What if God doesn’t choose to save us in spite of our failures, losses, and embarrassments, but precisely through them? What if it is not avoiding falling that strengthens our faith, but the falling itself?
Jonathan Martin was the founding pastor of Renovatus Church in Charlotte, North Carolina. Was, being the key word in that sentence. He isn’t anymore.
His ministry, his marriage, his relationships, everything on the rocks. He was living a shadow of his life; there, but not actually present. Then it happened. His life, marriage, relationships, ministry, it all crashed. Martin was shipwrecked.
But a shipwreck doesn’t have to be the end of the story. A shipwreck doesn’t mean that the passengers all die. In some cases, a shipwreck is the very thing that saves a life.
How To Survive A Shipwreck is not a how to rebuild your life book. It isn’t a self help book when you feel like everything has fallen apart. There are plenty of books out there that will tell you how to lift yourself up by your bootstraps, with questionable success. How To Survive A Shipwreck is a heartbreaking personal story, illustrating the soul crushing and reviving truth that “Help Is On the Way and Love Is Already Here.“
Jonathan Martin walks through the terrible brokenness that he experienced, and is still healing from, and shares how being broken is not the end, but a kind of beginning. In the midst of our darkest hours, when our lives have crashed and fallen upon the raging sea, it is here that God is most present. It is in this place where the pieces are scattered, the assurance that we are loved and cared dwells in a miraculous way.
To those that are hurting, to those that are suffering, to those that feel broken in spirit, How To Survive A Shipwreck will be fresh air to your lungs. It will be strength to weak arms. It will be encouragement to a weary soul. Wherever you are, however bad the shipwreck of our life may be, this is not the end. This is a new beginning. You will survive.
Nobody survives a shipwreck on their own.
I can’t imagine what a marriage failing would do to a person. I have no idea what it is like to leave a church after you have poured your life into for years. I do not understand everything that Jonathan Martin has gone through. But I know what it is like to be broken. I know what it is like to be hurt, lost, and confused. And I know I’m not the only.
What Jonathan Martin has done with How To Survive A Shipwreck is nothing short of miraculous. In the midst of tremendous loss and uncertainty, he has put words to his pain and experience. He has clung to the written Word of God and discovered powerful truths, lights that shone in the darkness that he lived in.
And then he shared them with us, with me.
I didn’t realize how broken I was until I had the chance to really look at the scars of someone else. I knew that I wasn’t whole but Martin painted his painful experience in such vivid color that one can’t help but see how deeply wounded a person is. That is not a bad thing. It is a wonderfully helpful and heathy thing to realize how sick you are. And how reassuring to have Martin’s wise, experienced words to guide a person towards healing.
I don’t think that I could recommend this book enough. If you have ever been hurt, wronged, or felt that life was caving in around you, then this is a book for you. If you have ever felt deserted, overwhelmed by circumstances, and left weeping alone, then this book is for you.
Whatever the struggle, whatever the issue, How To Survive A Shipwreck will speak to your tattered soul, and fill with hope.
…the shipwreck that threatened to destroy you utterly may be the thing that save you yet. It may not drown you; it may transfigure you.
This book, How To Survive A Shipwreck, is going to reach deep into your soul, and turn it inside out. The powerful imagery, the heart breaking story and journey of Jonathan Martin will encourage you in your lowest points, and give you strength to move on past them. I give this book an overwhelming 5 star rating. This book is phenomenal, raw, and exactly what so many Christians need to hear.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> 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 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”