The Nature of God by Mona Hanna

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. - Romans 8:35-39.

In her book, The Nature of God, author Mona Hanna explores the limitless depths of God's love and acceptance.  She details the nature of God by describing His mercy, forgiveness, patience and grace.  Each of the fifty short devotions delves into a deeper understanding of the attributes of God.  We are reminded that even when we feel unlovable, God is there.  His love in unending.  His mercies are new every morning.  His faithfulness is without end.

The book is well-written, and the structure allows for the reader to begin each day with one of the short devotions.  What better way to start each day than with a reminder of God's love!

Doctrinally, the book had a few areas that troubled me.  There were a couple of topics on which the line between truth and error was blurred.  For example, many times God's acceptance is described in such a way that it seems God accepts our sins as well as ourselves.  I Peter 1:16 says, "Be ye holy; for I am holy."  It does not say, "Do the best you can, and that will be good enough for God."  Yes, God accepts us as we are, but He loves us too much to leave us that way.  He longs for us to grow in Him.  He will forgive our sins, but He will not accept them or excuse them.

Another area that brought me grief was how the author made the relationship between God and the Christian seem like a one-sided arrangement.  From what I read, I inferred that Christians can live their lives as they see fit, and as long as their happy, God is happy.  They are not required to be separate from the world and do "Christian" things.  I disagree.  I Corinthians 10:31 says, "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God."  The word "Christian" means "Christ-like".  Everything a Christian does should be Christ-like and for the glory of God.  Yes, God wants us to be happy, but He also wants us to follow His plan for our lives.

Whether or not these blurred lines were intentional, I do not know.  I may have totally misunderstood what the author was trying to say, but if that is the case, there needs to be more clarity. For stronger Christians who have studied the Bible and are firmly grounded in their faith, this book might be a beneficial addition to their libraries.  For weaker Christians, I fear there are too many gray areas for me to recommend it.