Blessed Are The Misfits by Brant Hansen
This book. I laughed out loud so many times because I could relate SO much. Welcome to the mind of someone who is looking around at Western Church culture and trying to figure out if there’s something wrong with them. The answer? No, there isn’t. And you’re not the only one who wonders.
If you find yourself (like me) asking questions like these:
What if I just don’t connect as well with emotion-driven worship?
What if I’ve never “literally felt God’s loving arms around me” or heard the unmistakable, audible voice of God?
What if I’m not fully “content with my relationship with God” right here and now on this earth while I live my life because I can’t ignore the fact that we are actually still here on earth while God is, well, not?
What if my prayers don’t sound like everyone else’s?
What if I don’t have any super cool supernatural/spiritual stories?
This is a book for you.
It’s a shout out to all the others who feel like misfits spiritually due to some of the more popular church trends, and I’m shooting my hand up as high as it will go. He gives you a seat at the table, quotes The Lord of the Rings, references U2 and Grease, and lets so many people know that they aren’t alone.
It’s a real, honest, funny, refreshing read.
I took extensive pages of notes from this book, and there is no way I could fit every single quote in or each topic that he covers, which means that you will have to pick it up and read it yourself.
A couple of quotes that I found wonderful:
“Our feelings have nothing to do with whether God loves us or is still involved in our lives.”
“We’re surrounded in Christian culture with songs and messages that promote the idea that we have found our complete satisfaction in our relationship with God. But what if we’re supposed to yearn for something more? What if an aching dissatisfaction, even frustration, might be evidence of a right relationship with God?”
“Maybe it will dawn on us that we were not only invited, we’re the reason for the party. This is our feast. We won’t be beating ourselves up for feeling, in the long interim, that we were “missing something,” because we WERE missing something. Of course we were lonely for God. We knew Him, but not like this, not even close. There will be no more “together, yet apart.” We will be only — and at last — simply together, in God’s Kingdom.”
“If unity is such a big deal to Jesus, it simply makes no sense for me to call myself his follower while remaining independent.”
I know right?! He knows. I originally found it at my library, but I loved it so much that I have to buy my own copy so that I can underline, well, all of it.
If you give Blessed Are the Misfits a read, and I really really hope you do, let me know! I’d love to chat more about it with you and hear your thoughts.
Sneaky second recommendation:
Brant Hansen has also written a book called Unoffendable (Premise: What if I don’t have a right to my own offense? What if Christians are supposed to be the least offendable people on the planet?). I have just finished reading it this past weekend and it was just as good as Blessed Are the Misfits. He addresses the myth of “righteous anger”, letting go of offenses, and resting/thriving in forgiveness. It is wonderful, and convicting in the best way. I highly recommend checking out that one too.