Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Book Review: Blessed are the Balanced: A Seminarian’s Guide to Following Jesus in the Academy
By Paul E. Pettit and R. Todd Mangum
Many students seeking an academic degree in theology are not blessed, like me, with a wife that constantly and lovingly reminds him that there should be a daily time when the books are put on hold in order to have some family time (or you have dismissed the importance of her gentle nagging). This book will fill that need in your life. Not only does it remind us of the need to give our minds some rest, and our hearts some nurturing in the presence of our beloved families; but most importantly, it helps us bring to mind the whole reason we are pursuing academic excellence: to glorify Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Keeping our personal relationship with God aflame with passion, as we seek to know His Word better through academic learning, is something that should not be forgotten; otherwise, we will doom our very souls.
The book engages your attention, by appealing to your keen mind (especially if you’ve already learned some Greek and Hebrew); it also gives real-life illustrations to drive a point home. The authors do not forget to remind us of the beauty of humility, and the value of having a servant’s heart.
I know you are busy, but trust me: you want to read this book. It is brief, pulls no punches, and goes directly to the point. Take it with you to a park early on Saturday, read it, and come home with a fresh perspective on your calling to the higher learning endeavor.
Disclosure: The book was received for free from Kregel Academic book review program. The program does not require a positive review, only an unbiased one.