Review: “A Call for Courage”

by ggeurs

This is a review of the book A Call for Courage by Michael Anthony.

Before I begin this review, I need to acknowledge I am not a huge fan of ultra-conservative-politics-masquerading-as-Judeo-Christian-values books. If one is going to right a book about conservative politics, call it as such. If one is going to write a book on Judeo-Christian apologetics, be up front about it. As I was reading A Call for Courage, this hang-up kept me from really getting engaged with the text.

To boil down Michael Anthony’s thesis, one could summarize it like this: Christians need to be lovingly and unwaveringly firm in what they believe, and take every opportunity to take a stand, while being kind about it. And in encouraging his readers to do so, he models it, both in the anecdotes and examples he shares with the reader, as well as the tone he uses in presenting his ideas to his readers. This book is very thoughtful in its presentation of each area in which those who hold traditional Judeo-Christian values (he uses this phrase a lot) should not hesitate to take a stand. I agree with this notion, am always looking for a way to do so, and enjoyed that the end of each chapter provided a one-page summary of tangible suggestions for how one could put into practice what Anthony is writing about.

Where I get caught in this book is the flow. It feels like Anthony is on a roll, building momentum as he addresses a point of Christian ethics (and I almost start pumping my fist in excitement), and then he takes a hard right into politics land. I understand as an engaged citizen that one cannot realistically divorce morality and political legislation, but in a book whose subtitle is “Living with Power, Truth, and Love in an Age of Intolerance and Fear” would focus way more on the living and interacting with people, and less about the dangers of a liberal majority in Congress. But someone who enjoys a book that politely takes shots at those who don’t hold to a conservative agenda wouldn’t be bothered.

In the end, A Call for Courage was okay. I would maybe recommend it to friends of mine who engage their faith through politics. But a book like this is definitely not for everyone.

I received my copy of this book for free through the BookLook Bloggers program in exchange for reviewing it. I was not obligated to publish a positive review; the opinions expressed are mine.

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