For the past 20 years I have ranked every book I’ve read from one to four stars. The Contrarian’s Guide To Knowing God is definitely a four star book.

In his book, Larry Osborne writes, “Contrarian thinking at its best simply asks, Is this really true? It speaks up when the politically correct answer or conventional wisdom doesn’t match reality–when things simply don’t work the way everyone says they should.”

With that introduction, Larry examines most aspects of what many of us have been taught about growing in our relationship with God. I found his insights both troubling and encouraging.

Here are some gems:

“The best way to produce the kind of spiritual growth you are looking for is to hang around those who are already experiencing it. It’s a law of human nature. Over time, we start to think, act, and live like those we spend significant time with.”

“I pray the Prayer of Permission. ‘Lord, I know what you want me to do, but I don’t want to do it. I’m giving you full permission to change the way I feel and think about it.'”

“At the church I lead, we make every effort to avoid presenting cultural values, traditions, and extra-biblical rules and regulations as if they’re on par with Scripture.”

“Another problem with the quest to use all our gifts and fulfill all our promise, no matter what, is that it sets us up for the heartache known as Destination Sickness. There’s nothing worse than arriving where you wanted to go, only to realize you don’t want to be there. We’ve all experienced it at some level–having left something good for what we thought was much better; only to find that the greener grass was painted concrete. But perhaps the saddest part of the journey to bogus greener grass is that it almost always leaves behind broken relationships. Co-workers, family members, friends, and those who depend on us are devastated to discover that our deepest loyalty is not to them, but to ourselves and our potential.”

Pick this one up! It is well worth your time and energy.