Monday, October 16, 2017

Win a Copy of "A Small Book About a BIG Problem" by Ed Welch

Ed Welch is one of my greatest mentors in both life and ministry. His teaching, example, writing, and personal interactions have had an outsized influence on me for which I am truly grateful.

Ed understands how people tick. He knows how people feel, think, and behave and why people feel, think, and behave as they do. He even knows how people change. And he's good at talking about it! Ed has a way of boiling down complex ideas of the inner-workings of the human heart and the intersection of the human heart with God's Word into cogent, concise, and relatable language. So when I saw that Ed had written a short book on anger, I jumped at the chance to read it. I wasn't disappointed.

My Biggest Problem With This Book Is a Small One.

First, the critique.

I hate the title. It's accurate because the book is small (the 185 pages are only 4"x6"!) and the problem it talks about is big and affects us all, but you can't tell from the name what the book is actually about. The small print subtitle helps a little: Meditations on Anger, Patience, and Peace. I like the simplicity and color-scheme of the cover, but it also doesn't signal what is inside. Most of Ed's titles are timeless classics--Blame It on the Brain?, Running Scared, Shame Interrupted, When People Are Big and God Is Small, Side by Side--so this one is a bit of a let-down.

The Biggest Strength of This Book Is Not a Small One.

Okay. Glad I got that off my chest. I really don't have any other criticism to offer. This is a great book! The genius of it is how Ed crams 50 pungent meditations into such a small space and at a perfect pace.

Ed hasn't written a bunch of "devotional nuggets" with flowery, mystical, syrupy thoughts. He has distilled the dynamics of human anger and found 50 helpful ways to approach the problem biblically. Reading it is like having a really good conversation with a really good counselor. But a purposeful conversation. Ed doesn't waste time or words to get to the heart of things. For example, Day 41 begins, "If you want to know what you really think about the Lord, watch how you live." And he ends most of the short chapters with a searching question or two for application. It's really powerful stuff.

And it's funny, too. Day 36 begins, "You usually don't want to mess with raccoons, but this one was extreme." You know you want to read that chapter! The humor is often self-deprecatingly disarming and, before you know it, you see yourself (and your own hang-ups) in the mirror.

When I first started reading it, I said this on social media:
This book is small like a "ghost pepper" is small.
I expect that this small book will have big impact in people's lives.

Win Your Own Copy

Starting today, I'm offering a contest to win a copy of A Small Book About a BIG Problem. The good folks at New Growth Press will send a copy to the winner picked at random.

Entering this contest is very simple:

1. Leave a comment on this post (either here or on Facebook) with your name on it.

2. Wait to see if you win. I'll be drawing the names out of a hat. It's that easy! (Don't forget to check back or subscribe to updates to find out if you win--I'll need your mailing address if you do.)

You can also increase your chances of winning by posting about this contest on your social media page (FB, Twitter, Blog, Pinterest, etc.). Just send me an email or leave a comment with the link so that I know that you've expanded the reach of the contest. For each time you link to the contest, you get your name added to the hat one more time (limit of 7 chances, the contest ends at 11:59pm EST on Thursday night, October 19th).

I'll announce the winner on Friday.

Can't Wait Till Friday?

Buy your own copy now. [Amazon, New Growth Press, Westminster Bookstore]

And one for a friend. Ed recently wrote a humorous post about whether or not it is impolite to buy a book on anger for someone else. I thought his answer was not just funny but really loving, too.

Walk Through the Ideas with Ed

Want more?

CCEF is offering an 8 week video series with Ed directly delivered to your inbox.

By the way, Ed's book would make a great companion to David Powlison's Good and Angry which I reviewed last year. They are good friends, and their insights into anger are compatible and mutually support each other. David's writing is more essay-like, expansive and comprehensive. Ed's writing is more staccato and direct.

Thanks to Litfuse Publicty for the review copy of A Small Book About a BIG Problem.


Thanks for sharing your thoughts!!

I'd like a chance to win this book.

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Thanks, Paul! You have been entered 4 times!