It's just one of the soul-searching questions posed by bestselling author Brennan Manning, who confesses he has been "John the beloved, Peter the coward, and Thomas the doubter all before the waitress brought the check."
The NIV Ragamuffin Bible offers a collection of Manning's raw, painfully honest, yet grace-filled devotions, meditations, and reflections of his journey limping back to—like the prodigal son—his overjoyed father. When you journey through this Bible, you will likewise find yourself returning to your heavenly Father, basking in the knowledge that God not only loves you, he delights in you.
- an introduction by Brennan Manning, the “original ragamuffin”
- the complete text of the Holy Bible, New International Version
- 104 devotions that guide the reader into a deeper connection to God and His word
- 250 reflections that help the reader understand what it means to be a child of God
- quotes that offer the reader thoughtful insights into God’s kingdom
My take: Prior to getting this Bible, I'd never read anything by the late Brennan Manning. I'd heard a lot about him—some good and some bad—but all I really knew about him was that he'd profoundly influenced Rich Mullins, one of my favorite singer-songwriters in college. (Let me note that Mullins had already passed away by the time I was in college, but college is when I really connected with his music. I don't want you to think I'm older than I am!)
I opened the NIV Ragamuffin Bible not knowing what to expect. The actual text of the Bible I had full confidence in, but I wasn't sure what I'd find in Manning's reflections and devotions. What I read were deep, thought-provoking passages and engaging stories. I especially enjoyed the shorter reflections, all of which directly correspond to a passage of scripture.
The acknowledgments at the back of the Bible list the sources for each of the devotions and reflections, so if someone wants to read more on a particular topic, they can find where exactly Manning wrote about it.
I begin each year with grand plans to read through the entire Bible. Each year, I fail miserably. So I don't know if I will succeed in this, but I plan to begin my 2014 Bible read-through using this Bible.
My rating: 5 stars
Watch the book trailer.
Buy the book.
Download a sample (Psalms & Matthew).
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from The B&B Media Group. 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."