Unexpected and fantastic read

UnknownI started Midnight Jesus with a bit of trepidation – I guess I was expecting one of those justice books that suggests that everyone should be just like the author.

Wow, is this not that.

Author Jamie Blaine is a musician, church psychotherapist, and assistant manager of a roller rink. He describes each of these parts of his life with a balance you rarely find, and it’s fantastic to watch how he wrestles with practical needs (like making a living) with the opportunities God presents (being the midnight psych ward crisis response guy, managing the roller rink). He somehow sews it together into a coherent whole, while remaining cognizant of what he’s missing out on by living such an unorthodox life.

But the heart of this book are the people Blaine meets – most of whom are at rock bottom. I’m not sure how to justice to how great his writing is here, how he shows respect for people without sugarcoating the depths of their despair. He doesn’t have answers. Let me repeat that: He doesn’t have answers. He shows, rather than tells how the story of Jesus intersects with the story of us, and it’s incredible.

It took me a few chapters to get into the book, because the tone and writing style (not to mention Blaine’s general approach to life) are pretty different. But this doesn’t seem like affect – one gets the sense that this is just who he is, rather than something he’s adopted to stand out in some way.If you’re looking for a good read, I highly recommend Midnight Jesus.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.