cover image Stumbling Toward Eternity: Losing and Finding Ourselves in the Cross of Jesus

Stumbling Toward Eternity: Losing and Finding Ourselves in the Cross of Jesus

Josh White. Multnomah, $17 (224p) ISBN 978-0-593-19393-8

Pastor and recording artist White invites Christians to rediscover the significance of the cross in this enlightening debut. Reaching beyond its “sanitized” public symbolism, White contends the cross signals humility and true vulnerability—a locus where human brokenness is transformed by the love of God, who “interprets our stories and infuses them with the meaning we long for.” In seven chapters, one for each of Jesus’s final words, scriptural musings and memoir fragments depict different facets of faith. “The Cross of Division and Acceptance” includes the author’s thoughts about his later-in-life reunions with his formerly absent, drug-addicted father, underlining the need to bridge divides through God’s love, while in “The Cross of Abandonment and Communion,” White recalls the night his mother fled an abusive partner, with him and his brother in tow: in Christianity, too, he writes, “comfort is found in the struggle.” Throughout, White contrasts the love and redemption of surrender to Christ with the unfulfillment of “ladder theology” (the belief “if I achieve A, B, and C, then I will be accepted and satisfied”). White delivers personal and theological insight with unflinching honesty—there’s a rawness to his tone that makes clear he, too, is “stumbling” through a faith journey, not delivering insight from on high. This modern take on Christianity’s oldest symbol will appeal to many believers. (Feb.)