I do not typically reread books. The Shack is an exception. I think I could read this book once a year. This is a book that challenges my views and perceptions. This book makes me evaluate myself so in that regard, I should read it once a year.
The Shack is a fiction book with a lot of truth in it. Several times I asked myself is this a true story? I give credit to Young for writing a book that seems real enough that the reader has to remind herself it is fiction.
MacKenzie Allen Philips is a husband and father who experiences childhood abuse and the kidnapping and murder of his daughter. These circumstances leave Mack feeling distant from God. Mack is certain God is unloving and has left him to fend for himself in life until he receives a note in the mail.
After much deliberation, Mack returns to the shack where his daughter was killed to meet God. During his time there Mack’s world transformed, quite literally, into what God intended it to be. Mack learns to know and love Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit in ways he never imagined possible.
Through Mack’s adventure at the shack, the reader is presented with truth and theology in a way never read before. I enjoyed the conversations that read so real and genuine. This book made a lasting impression on my views and ideas of who God, Jesus and Holy Spirit are. Our ability to understand and fathom who God is barely begins to define His being. Reading another person’s experience and understanding broadens my view. Young describes the scene, feelings and emotion well. Readers are present and at ease in the story.
This book is fiction and should be read as fiction. Young explains it best, “I am sitting in Eagle Creek, in a rented house, writing a story for my kids. I am not writing a story that I intend or expect will be published. Actually the thought never even entered my mind. I was going to write this thing as a gift…. I wanted my kids to enjoy a story and through the story to understand there own father better and the God that their father is so in love with.”
Read The Shack for the creative writing it is and let it challenge and broaden your view of God but, don’t let it serve as your only resource. The Bible is our foundation of truth that everything should be held up against. Maybe God has a “shack” experience in store for you or maybe you’ll be a changed person after reading Mack’s story.
This book is an absolute "must read" and maybe it will become a yearly occurance for you too.