by Caleb Kaltenbach
Foreword by Kyle Idleman
WaterBrook Press, 2015
Review by Tijuana L. Canders
Feb 19, 2017
Author Caleb Kaltenbach speaks openly about his experience of having gay parents, coming to Christ, subsiding stereotypes, and loving others. Kaltenbach talks about a messy grace, which is ‘tension’ between grace and truth. The Author’s message inspires readers to lessen these tensions, find common ground with the LGBT community, and let others know that the Church needs to be a place where you can ‘belong before you believe.’
If we have a Church filled with people who are honest and vulnerable about their shortcomings, then the gospel will know no boundaries. Showing grace and truth to people in the LGBT community is crucial. If we don’t have churches that also know how to show grace and truth, we’ll never fundamentally overcome the hostility between the Christian community and the LGBT community. Messy Grace brings a message to communities not to be afraid of people who are different. Reaching others is hard when you’re trying to ‘run’ from them.
Caleb Kaltenbach says the Christian community needs to own the fact that people are deep, struggles are real, and people are working through them. Most importantly, Christians need to stop trying to convert people’s sexuality. It isn’t their job to change someone’s sexual orientation. You and I are not called by God to make gay people straight. People in the LGBT community can go from being ‘them’ to being our friends. As a Christian myself, I am not saying it is Biblical to be gay, but I am saying it is a Biblical commandment to agape love the gay community as individuals.
Messy Grace is a twelve chapter book with subtitles, reflection and discussion questions to engage the reader. I would recommend this book for small groups, colleges, churches, youth camps and for personal reading. Caleb Kaltenbach is ever so brave and gracious to bring his life into the lives of others in order to positively impact communities to address their fear of differences and the unknown.
© 2017 Tijuana L.Canders