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Dare to Drop the Pose: Ten Things Christians…

Dare to Drop the Pose: Ten Things Christians Think but Are Afraid to Say (2010)

by Craig Groeschel

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This book openly reveals the secret that most Christians want to conceal--we are not perfect. But while not perfect, we are forgiven. Christians, like non-christians, face a multitude of problems and short-comings this this world. The author exposes just a few...and there are many. ( )
  george1295 | Dec 24, 2011 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Author and preacher Craig Groeschel endorses authenticity in Christian community with powerful tool: example. In his re-release of "Dare to Drop the Pose: Ten Things Christians Think but Are Afraid to Say" (previously published as "Confessions of a Pastor"), Groeschel vulnerably exposes in himself some of his―and our―greatest weaknesses, areas of temptation, and battles with sin. His writing style is gritty, honest, and culturally relevant as he confesses his struggle to stay sexually pure, his deep fear of failure, and the overwhelming loneliness from which he suffers. Other topics he covers are: personal dislike for other Christians, prayer meetings, and criticism; the tendency to worry; doubt in God; and feelings of inadequacy. Along with his series of confessions, Groeschel offers biblical guidance for navigating through the pitfalls he can so identify with.

His musings on loneliness and isolation struck a very personal chord as I have walked through a particularly painful year…a year which has left me more and more running for the “safety” of distance and shallow relationships. Countless Christian writers wax on the importance of relationship with other Believers. But, Groeschel’s words felt especially timely. In his personal confession, he reflected my own heart in such a profound way. And the line that caught my attention: “When we front a fiction, we are destined for loneliness.” He goes on to describe the risk it took for David to trust Jonathan (I Samuel 23) and the blessings God is waiting to pour on us through our fellow sojourners.

The Chapter “Sometimes I Doubt God” had some wise nuggets, as well. I enjoyed this author’s perspective on faith, questions, and God’s ability to handle our weakness. Using Thomas as an example (John 20), Groeschel ponders Jesus’ response to his disciple’s skepticism: He answered the question and welcomed the pursuit of Truth. “Faith grows when we seek answers to the right questions. We find answers through passionately pursuing Truth.”

One of this author’s examples did leave me scratching my head, as often happens when someone quotes an “expert” or an “experiment” without a source. In his chapter on the fear of failure, Groeschel cites an experiment in which monkeys are “taught to fail” in their attempts to reach some bananas. While the description of the monkeys’ response made sense in light of the author’s points, it felt like cheesy “literary license”.

This book would be a great encouragement to a newer or younger Christian. Groeschel is “hip”, even mentioning “Undoing bras or zippers” in the first fifty pages. His candor pulled me in, and I kept thinking of my twenty-something adult children. His doctrine is sound, if simplistic, and his love for Jesus apparent. ( )
  jpogue | Nov 21, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Review of Dare to Drop the Pose by Craig Groeschel
By A. Michael Cole

Groeschel’s 202 page book is a popularly written self-disclosure that intends to motivate its readers to “get real.” Multnomah published Dare to Drop the Pose in 2010, but its original title in 2006 was Confessions of a Pastor.

Groeschell’s goal is to be honest about 9 topics Christians are reluctant to be open and honest about: Christian unity, sexual purity, loneliness, prayer meetings, anxiety, doubt, inadequacy, handling criticism, and failure.

The book is an easy read. Quick readers could read it in an evening sitting. While Groeschell is open, he doesn’t drag his readers through the nasty details of his sins (thankfully). A couple of sections were very helpful to me. First, in the introduction he highlights the danger and error of the “pastoral mystique” view of the pastorate. Second, his section on learning to love other believers had some very helpful tips. Third, his chapter on loneliness has some good insights. He gives three “seclusion conclusions” that contribute loneliness: 1) “I have to perform for people,” 2) “to survive in life, you can’t trust anyone,” and 3) “people don’t really care about us (65-69). This was perhaps the most helpful section me.

Overall, this is a good, helpful book. I don’t think I’d recommend it as a must-read, but if you have some time and own the book you won’t regret reading it. ( )
  AMCole | Nov 3, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Craig Groeschel's /Dare to Drop the Pose/ was originally released as /Confessions of a Pastor/ and feel that this latter was definitely a more appropriate title than it's re-released title. The book is organized into 10 mostly unrelated areas where Groeschel feels he either has struggled in the past or, in many cases, still struggles. These topics are:

1. I Can't Stand A Lot of Christians
2. I Have to Work Hard to Stay Sexually Pure
3. Most of the Time I feel Incredibly Lonely
4. I Hate Prayer Meetings
5. I Worry Almost All the Time
6. Sometimes I Doubt God
7. I Feel Completely Inadequate
8. I Stink at Handling Criticism
9. I'm Afraid of Failure
10. One Last Confession

There is much to commend in this book, especially the courage behind it. I think the greatest strength is that Groeschel identifies many areas that a lot of Christians struggle with. I feel like many of these areas will be a sigh of relief for many who read it. And he goes a long way to let people know that it's okay to struggle with these things - the Bible is full of people who do, and God redeems their weaknesses and turns them to strengths. People will do well to really use this book to help diagnose whether they are "posing" in their own Christian lives.

However, I feel that Groeschel's greatest weakness is that he tries to give answers in such a short book. Because of this, the answers seem to leave you hanging since there is simply not enough room to do it justice, or he resorts to cliches and simplistic statements. Surely there is much more to "getting over" your worrying than just realizing that God is in control. Yeah, but, how do you "realize" that God is in control? What are practical ways to help in this? Groeschel just doesn't seem to go there nearly enough. The format of the book is great for diagnosing the problem, but not for supplying helpful solutions.

Overall, it is worth the read, if only to remind you that you are not alone in your struggles for the faith. But once I've done that, I would recommend many other resources to help get stronger in each of the areas Groeschel addresses. ( )
  jaredbyas | Nov 1, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is a great, easy-to-read, basic introduction to the areas in which Christians tend to hide their true natures/feelings. The text flows easily, so you can breeze through it, but I'd advise against that: you can learn a lot about yourself by actually applying Groeschel's questions to your life. Most importantly, this book will encourage people who worry that Christianity just doesn't come as easily to them as it seems to come to other people. Also, books like this are the first step in Christians dealing with claims of hypocrisy -- unless we are willing to admit our failings, we will be at risk of appearing shallow and unappealing to others.

This ain't grand theology, and Groeschel isn't Niebuhr, Tillich or even Lewis, but that's a good thing in this case. ( )
  epivet | Oct 29, 2010 |
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