A Look at A Book
Norman Grubb’s books are no longer being published, so if you have any, be sure to keep them in circulation by lending them out to your friends. The days are coming to a close when someone browsing the Christian book-store can light upon a catchy title like Who Am I? and decide to give it a try. I know of several people whose lives have been forever changed from just such a “chance meeting” with Norman.
Speaking of Who Am I?-let me entice you to reread it or order it from the Intercessor and get it off our shelf and into circulation. Who Am I? is often overlooked in favor of Yes I Am, Norman’s latest book, or one of his ear-her books-The Liberating Secret, The Law of Faith, The Spontaneous You, etc.,-considered vintage Norman. Who Am I? is sort of like the middle child-often slighted and neglected, but what a gem it is!
In his characteristically succinct style, Norman covers the meaning of the universe and what it is to be a per-son in 150 pages-what the world’s great philosophers have taken volumes to cover! And the best is that the chapters are short-four or five pages each-perfect for use as five minute daily devotional reading with your morning coffee, or to be kept on your bedside table for reading just before bed. At a chapter a day, you’d finish the book in less than a month. And listen to the intriguing chapter titles: “What is a Person?,” “The Origin of Evil,” “What is God’s Wrath?,” “The Self Can’t Be Improved,” “Have We Two Natures?.” And “God Determines, Not Permits.” Norman is not afraid to tackle the most challenging of questions!
Hear how he tells us to handle tragedy, need, disease–even lost keys: “Say a thing is just some small house-hold or business problem, or some major world situation. I start by the way I am looking at it, for this is our whole first point, that we are inner people and are controlled by the way we inwardly see a thing, in other words by our believing. Now I always am meant, as a practical human, to start seeing it as it outwardly appears. I have mislaid something. There is a financial need. There is a relationship problem. There is sickness or tragedy. Of course I begin by believing it as it appears to be. That means I am bound by a sense of helplessness, or a drive to try somehow to clear it; but my spirit is clouded by my negative outlook; of course in a thousand things it never even occurs to me that there could be another way of looking at it. What is more, I am confirming and strengthening the condition that is bothering me by my attitude of believing in it as it is. This is our whole realm of outlook on all life, and any other outlook is merely phony.
“Nut now, supposing the real truth is that this outward situation is only an outward appearance. Really only a shadow. Suppose the real fact is that, as there is only God in the universe, this situation is God in disguise. It is He in some outer clothing of need, tragedy, problem. They are the distortions of God’s perfect world, but they are only distortions. God’s perfection is the only reality, and, as He did by Jesus, by the authority of the faith of His believing sons, He manifests Himself today in His perfection through the outer appearances of imperfection.
“So we are daringly saying that wherever there is a need, small or great, wherever there is a disturbed or tragic situation, God is not just looking on and to be called upon to intervene. No, God is the Real One right in the situation, and it is only His distorted clothing; and we preserve the clothing by believing it to be the real.
“Now in utmost simplicity, without changing an outward thing, let us transfer our believings. That’s all. Let us deliberately affirm, against all appearance, that this is not the difficulty it appears to be. Instead of looking at the situation, let us look through-to God, again not afar off, but the very situation being He in disguise. He with supply, He with solution, He with change, where we only see the opposite.”
That’s a long quote, but I wanted you to catch the transforming power of Norman’s uncompromising faith stance. I can’t think of a better way to start the day than with a chapter from Who Am I? Though it was written 20 years ago, you’ll find it pertinent, practical, and encouraging.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 10 No 5
- God’s Tight Corners
- Postscript to Yes I Am
- Editor’s Note
- Off With The Grave Clothes
- A New Creation
- Excerpt from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- Moments with Meryl
- To Think About
- The Letter to the Romans
- Questions & Answers
- Life Out of Death
- The Mailbox
- New Light on the Twelve Steps
- A Look at A Book
- Words to Live By