I remember waiting with baited breath for my copy of Stovall Weems’ book to arrive. I had read the synopsis and editorial reviews for his book and felt that “the answers” would be found between the covers. I stood with my nose pressed against the glass of my front door waiting for the brown truck to arrive carrying the package containing what I needed to “awaken” my spiritual desire and breath life into my relationship with God. What I found when it arrived was not quite the sledgehammer-effect I had envisioned. Awakening did not inspire me to stay awake late at night to delve deeper into the book.
WAIT! Ok so it did not hit me like a sledgehammer but it was a good read. I learned what a fast was, why it is important, what side-effects there were to fasting, and how to increase my learning from the fast. Stovall’s love for God’s Word is amazing. As a reader, I could sense his love and intense desire to show the amazing relationship with God that everyone can have. I was able to follow the author’s thinking when he aligned the Scripture with his “aha” moments. Knowing that Stovall was not the went-to-church-and-got-the-answers kind of guy helped me since I am still searching for the answers and I go to church a lot.
So what did I “get” from Awakening? Reading the book helped to awaken my hunger for a BFF-type of relationship with God. I got down-to-earth not earth-shattering insight into this relationship using Scripture, journaling, and fasting. I learned that fasting is not about giving up chocolate for Lent and then going back to status quo the day after Easter. I learned that a fast can be an in-depth measure to unplug from the world and plug into the Word. I learned about agreeing with God’s Word, aligning with Christ, and accepting the assignment that God gives to me – that assignment that is special to me in ways that may not give someone else an “aha” moment.
Now that caveat is that the devotional is at the end of the book along with a study guide for groups to use. I would suggest that other readers either read the book and then start over with the devotional and study guide or else just begin there. Also remember that you can plug in anytime to God with fasting. It is not for just Lent or only on Fridays. Stovall begins his fast on January 1 so that he begins his year on the right path. Are you ready to AWAKEN?
I received this book from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for review.
You can purchase this book from www.praisesonline.com.