I just finished reading Matthew Paul Turner’s book, Churched. You’ll see him on my “Favorite Peeps” list as Jesus Needs New PR. Someone with a blog by that name has to be hilarious, and his writing does not disappoint.
As someone who spent many years attending a church every bit as wacky as the one Turner grew up in, I laughed out loud at the memories “Churched” resurrected. Turner’s descriptions of holy haircuts, church uniforms, and pastors who screamed until they were hoarse were all too familiar. I was a bit older than Turner when I had these experiences in church, so it was especially entertaining to read about them from the viewpoint of a small child.
On a serious note, I think the greatest value in Turner’s book is its ability to speak to those no longer interested in God due to the heavy spiritual oppression experienced in some of today’s churches. How we must sadden a God of love and grace when his people present him as harsh and punishing. Turner is proof that a loving, heavenly Father can still be found by all who seek Him—and that it’s OK to laugh at oneself along the way.
And hey, he also has a son named Elias. How cool is that?
(I have two copies of the book. If you’d like to borrow one, just let me know! It’s an easy, entertaining, thought-provoking read.)