There is nothing new in this book.
If you’re looking from some new word, some fancy new idea, or a new angle you are looking in the wrong place. This book is not filled with new revelations. Instead, they are filled with fresh words about an old idea.
There is one thing that Brennan Manning focused on, one thing that drove his words, his books, his speaking engagements and retreats. That one thing is the heart of this book: God loves you exactly as you are. You might think that this topic would get exhausted after a few treatments. But no. There is always more to say, to reiterate, to explore and we plant this truth deep, deep, deep into our hearts, into our identities, into our soul.
The Furious Longing of God is another wading into the love of god in all its reckless abandon and furiousness. I could spend the next few hundred words telling you about the book, trying to convince you to go read it. But I won’t. Instead, I’m going to invite you to stop and listen to a song. This song is the soundtrack to this book in my head. It was written years ago, yet it is perfectly descriptive of this book, this invitation to enter into union with Christ and experience his love in such a way that it causes true prayer to erupt from your lips, healing and accepting embraces from your body, and (above all) give you an abiding sense if identity that cannot be shaken.
Stop and listen.
Did you hear it? The reckless raging fury that they call the love of God? Did you hear it calling to you, wanting to overpower you, overshadow you?
That is what this book is. The Furious Longing of God is Brennan once again preaching the gospel to himself even as he soothes our hearts with the truth. In it, he told me that God the Father loves me as much as he loves Jesus. I am blown away at that thought. This entire book is a humble invitation through stories and poetic prose to experience the love of God that will decimate you, undo you, and make you into the person you were created to be. It’s an invitation to accept the name beloved.
These words came to me at a time in my life when I feel unlovable. These words fell on a hard heart. But slowly, slowly they are sinking in. Slowly, slowly I am daring to hope to believe that God may actually love me as I am right now without any dressing up, cleaning up, or making up. I don’t quite believe those words right now, but I am enticed to lose myself in the raging storm that is the love of God.
This book pulls no punches. While Brennan is easy to read, it is not a simple book to read. You will feel. You will be confronted with lies you didn’t know you believed. You will be invited to expand your imagination and begin to believe that the mystics may be onto something, that union with Christ is not only possible but desired by the Father.
If you have never read Brennan before, this is a great place to start. If you have read his other works, you will find the same message presented with new words in this book, but it is an inexhaustible message we need to hear time and time and time again and again and again.
Just go read the book. Listen to the song. Hear the invitation to believe, to be embraced, to be loved.