Tag Archives: Max Lucado

Book Review: Second Chances by Max Lucado

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Second Chances by Max Lucado is the latest compilation of stories from one of the great modern Christian story-tellers. Max this time ties all of his stories together under the theme that “God gives second chances”. He breaks that down into stories of the rebellious, regret-riddled, prideful, mistake-makers, those with a faltering faith, and those who have hurt us.

The first story is familiar to those who know the New Testament – the parable of the Prodigal Son, but told from the perspective of the son. He tells the story of someone who suddenly realizes how far he’s fallen and decides that it’s time to stop making excuses and pretending that he’s better off than he really is. That is followed by the story of a mother seeking her daughter who had run away to the big city. Another similar story tells of a father desperately reaching out to his daughter who had run away with a boy. In each story, the person who left home had to overcome their pride and accept the love freely offered to them back home.

Those who have regrets are addressed next – missed opportunities, squandered dreams, or drowning in sin. Max weaves stories of how there are second chances offered to everyone who looks for them and accepts God’s offer of forgiveness and love. One story tells of people carrying around sacks of rubbish that represents their sins. The only way to get rid of them is to let someone else who doesn’t have any rubbish take it from them.

We read stories of Paul, Jonah, Peter, Moses, and many other prominent figures in the Bible. Each is told in Max’s style. Of course, that means that Max takes some creative liberties with the stories. They’re all based on the Bible or themes that we see in the Bible, though few should be taken as exact translations.

My take: If you’ve read Max Lucado before and enjoyed his works, you’ll like this one. If you aren’t familiar with his writings, this is a good representation of his work and a great read. For those struggling with forgiveness, the stories in Second Chances will be helpful. I really liked the stories and readings. They make for quick reads, but give you quite a bit to think about.

Disclaimer: I was given a preview copy of this book with no expectations on the part of the publisher. The opinions expressed are my own and were not influenced by anyone else.

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Book Review: In the Manger by Max Lucado

In the Manger by Max Lucado is a set of 25 excerpts from Max’s books that form a set of readings for use during the 25 days leading up to Christmas. Each reading includes a Bible verse and a selection from one of Max’s books and focuses on an aspect of Jesus. Each day ends with a short prayer to help the reader focus on God becoming man, celebrating the miracle of Jesus coming into the world as a man.

Max Lucado writes in an easy to understand set of stories. If you’ve read his works in the past, these will be familiar to you. If you haven’t and are looking for a short devotional to help you focus on the Christ of Christmas, this set of readings is not a bad one to get you started. I appreciated Max’s speculations on what the prayers of Mary and Joseph might have been for this little baby destined for things beyond what they can understand, though he does show some of what we know will come that Mary and Joseph likely didn’t.

I can appreciate this set of readings in preparation for Christmas. The short stories and thoughts are just deep enough to give us something to ponder but are easy enough for a child to read along with the family. As these are stories and thoughts from Max Lucado, I’d caution the reader to not treat them as what actually happened, but as one author’s take on the way people could respond to the way God chose to send a baby into the world as part of His plan. Max ends with a prayer that we see Jesus the way Thomas did, proclaiming, “My Lord and my God.” With that end in mind, Max does a good job helping us to take our thoughts off of the typical busy-ness and distractions of the season and reminding us of the wonders of Christmas.

Disclaimer: I was provided with a preview copy of this book by the publisher with no expectations. This review was not influenced by the publisher in any way.

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