Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Year of Living Like Jesus review

Jacket description:
"Evangelical pastor Ed Dobson chronicles his year of living like Jesus and obeying his teachings. Dobson’s transition from someone who follows Jesus to someone who lives like Jesus takes him into bars, inspires him to pick up hitchhikers, and deepens his understanding of suffering. As Dobson discovers, living like Jesus is quite different from what we imagine."

Inspired by A.J. Jacobs, author of The Year of Living Biblically, (which I reviewed back in May) Dobson has essentially tweaked the process Jacobs went through when he attempted to follow the Bible as literally as possible for one year, and decides to strictly live like Jesus. What happens is sometimes funny, sometimes emotionally riveting, and overall a really interesting experiment about a regular man attempting to live his life in a Jesus-like manner. It could not possibly have been an easy task to take on, but Dobson did so in a realistic manner, at times having to stray from his Jesus-like path to accommodate his daily life.

I felt the writing was choppy, although done in a journal-type style, so maybe the choppiness would work for some people. I was a bit put off by it in the beginning of the book, but slowly grew to appreciate Dobson's simplistic thoughts about his journey and note-jotting. We get a glimpse inside the world of this man, struggling to live with ALS, a degenerative illness, whose faith is astounding despite his self-proclaimed weaknesses.

The middle of the book is a bit history-heavy, filled with facts from the Jewish faith and the aspects of life in Jerusalem, as explained when Dobson leads a tour group. I found myself skimming a little here, but overall I really enjoyed reading Dobson's journey. His constant humility and humor was a great addition to the pages and I would have no problem handing both Christians and non-Christians the book. Either way, it's a good read.

The Year of Living Like Jesus: My Journey of Discovering What Jesus Would Really Do
Ed Dobson
304 pages
October 2009
Review copy received via Amazon Vine

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