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Monday, August 27, 2012

The Grace Effect: How the Power of One Life Can Reverse the Corruption of Unbelief by Larry Alex Taunton

The Grace Effect is not only an encouraging read for Christians, especially those battling atheists and secularism, but it is actually an account of how God intervenes and creates opportunities to work with God. The author does not characterize his book as such an account, but I couldn't help but notice the evidence of it. The book starts with a casual debate with Christopher Hitchens, a popular atheist, on Christianity, God, and God's relevance today. The author then begins his detailed account of his experience of adopting a ten year old girl from Ukraine. The author also explains Ukraine's history and how Christianity became suppressed for many decades. At first, I didn't realize where the author was going with this, but it became a real life, true example of how Christianity, or the lack of it, affects people and culture. The author provides an evidentiary account of how true Christianity, the only religion that is based on Grace, influences society and creates what the author calls the Grace effect. Through the author's experience of the adoption process in Ukraine, a country where Christianity has been absent for many decades, the reader can see just how true Christianity affects society, even in secularism. The adoption process in Ukraine was full of corruption, bribes and clearly did not have the child's best interests at heart. The author's interactions with citizens further illustrate how calloused and uncaring the people of Ukraine are. By explaining the history of Ukraine, with it's socialist and communist foundation, the reader clearly sees what happens to a society that is not influenced by Christianity. This is wake up call as to the dangers of the atheist movement and the damage atheism can cause to society. It is important to note that socialists and communists are atheists, which the author explains in his book. The author makes a very good point, that atheists who live in a country influenced by Christianity are not comparable to the atheists who have not been influenced by Christianity. The lack of moral conscience in Ukraine validates this point. How Sasha's (the ten year old adoptee) life has now been affected by Christianity drives the point home. Sasha is a real life example of the Grace Effect. I highly recommend this book for everyone, both Christian and non-Christian alike. It is an eye opener as to what will happen to a society that has been devoid of the Christian influence. After the adoption proceess, the author publically debated Christopher Hitchens, and the author's real life experience of interactions in a country that has been devoid of Christianity for many decades only strengthened the author's ability to successfully debate a prominent atheist. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."