Have you met the real Jesus - the One who is wild enough to set you free? Too many people settle for relating to Jesus merely as a comfortable friend and companion, when what we all need is an...
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Have you met the real Jesus - the One who is wild enough to set you free?
Too many people settle for relating to Jesus merely as a comfortable friend and companion, when what we all need is an untamed Savior, a fearless champion tough enough to conquer our shame and compelling enough for us to follow him without hesitation.
"I finally realized my caricature of Jesus wasn't big enough to calm my anxiety or heal my wounds or defeat the wickedness in our world. Pretending Jesus is less than He is resulted in someone I wasn't compelled to worship. So I began a journey to discover the whole Jesus - including the seemingly rough and wild parts - revealed in the Bible. And I found Him to be bigger and better than I ever dreamed."
- Lisa Harper
Through a powerful blend of storytelling and biblical insights, Lisa Harper invites you to engage with the Jesus of the gospels, a person so provocative that no one left an encounter with Him unchanged. Pharisees fumed, paralytics turned cartwheels, and pariahs found love and acceptance. Come meet the Jesus who is both safe and strong, and learn how this radical Redeemer can liberate you to live and love with abandon.
Includes questions for group discussion or personal reflection.
Praise for Untamed
"This book is an invitation you'll want to accept. Lisa Harper invites you to meet the Jesus she knows - and just as those who encountered Jesus centuries ago, you'll never be the same." - Max Lucado, New York Times best-selling author
"What an outrageous, uproarious, unexpected approach to Jesus. It made me laugh out loud and want to fling myself more wholeheartedly into my faith. Lisa's stories smack with humanity, and her insights burst open with divinity. What a wild combination! What an untamed adventure!"
- Patsy Clairmont, author of Kaleidoscope
"One of the things I love about Lisa Harper is her uncanny ability to teach us something and we don't even realize we are learning. As she takes the stories of her everyday life and weaves them into stories found throughout the Bible, I find myself drawn in. First, because she is real and honest about her own life and struggles. Second, because she reminds us that those great patrons of our faith found in the pages of God's Word had issues too. Lots of them. Most important, she offers hope - hope from her own journey and hope from God's promises."
- Sandi Patty, Grammy award-winning vocalist
"Lisa Harper is a wonderful storyteller, a brilliant scholar, and a dear friend. In this new book she challenges us with a picture of Christ that shows He is both fierce and fearless in His love. If you long for freedom and safety in Christ's arms, read on."
- Sheila Walsh, author of Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God
Praise for Untamed aThis book is an invitation youall want to accept. Lisa Harper invites you to meet the Jesus she knows-and just as those who encountered Jesus centuries ago, youall never be the same.a -Max Lucado, New York Timesbest-selling author aWhat an outrageous, uproarious, unexpected approach to Jesus. It made me laugh out loud and want to fling myself more wholeheartedly into my faith. Lisaas stories smack with humanity, and her insights burst open with divinity. What a wild combination! What an untamed adventure!a -Patsy Clairmont, author of Kaleidoscope aOne of the things I love about Lisa Harper is her uncanny ability to teach us something and we donat even realize we are learning. As she takes the stories of her everyday life and weaves them into stories found throughout the Bible, I find myself drawn in. First, because she is real and honest about her own life and struggles. Second, because she reminds us that those great patrons of our faith found in the pages of Godas Word had issues too. Lots of them. Most important, she offers hope-hope from her own journey and hope from Godas promises.a -Sandi Patty, Grammy awardaowinning vocalist aLisa Harper is a wonderful storyteller, a brilliant scholar, and a dear friend. In this new book she challenges us with a picture of Christ that shows He is both fierce and fearless in His love. If you long for freedom and safety in Christas arms, read on.a-Sheila Walsh, author of Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God aHereas what I like about this book: two stories intertwine-the authoras story of her relationship with the Savior and how He brought her to freedom in Himself andthe Savioras story of His incomparable attributes as He manifests them repeatedly in Lisaas life. By inference, we who know Christ personally have that same opportunity and privilege of seeing these attributes at work in our own lives. Lisa reminds us to stop, take notice, and give thanks for the fact that the Son has set us free so we are free indeed. Now, all we have to do is believe it&and enjoy it.a -Luci Swindoll, Women of Faith speaker and author aLisa Harper knocks me out! Untamed invites me to experience the wild side of Jesus without losing the gentle side of Jesus. The bookas wonderfully balanced perspective motivates me to pursue Him with new vigor.a -Marilyn Meberg, Women of Faith speaker and author of Tell Me Everything aRarely does a book merit the descriptions atransformativea and amind-altering,a but Lisa Harper earned both with Untamed.I was at once unsettled by her challenges to my mental images of Jesus and reminded that, while He walked this earth, He was both completely of this world and wholly otherworldly. Lisa Harperas writing invites you to view Jesus in a dangerously daring and honest way by placing spiritual 3-D glasses on your mind and heart.a -Anita Renfroe, comedian and author Praise for A Perfect Mess aLisa Harper knows life. And she knows Godas Word. I love how she intertwines the two, bringing hope to the hopeless and help to everyone whoas ever felt like a perfect mess. With fresh insight and poignant stories, Lisa reveals a God who brings order out of chaos with just a word&even the chaos of our lives.a -Joanna Weaver, author of Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World From the Trade Paperback edition.
Lisa Harper is the former director of Women's Outreach for Focus on the Family, and was the creator and driving force behind the organization's Renewing the Heart Conferences, which ministered to more than 200,000 women between 1997 and 1999. As a result of her ministry at Renewing the Heart events, Lisa is now a sought after speaker at women's retreats, conferences and other events around the country. Lisa's books,
Beauty on the Other Side of the Brink
I love pure speed and pristine mountains, and one of my favorite places to combine the two is Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Jackson Hole is a bit off the beaten path when it comes to snow-skiing resorts, so the town isn’t overdeveloped with fast-food restaurants, nor are the slopes jam-packed like a shopping mall on the day after Thanksgiving. It’s still a relatively unspoiled Eden, where the local elk population outnumbers the tourists.
One of my favorite ski runs at Jackson Hole is called Timbered Island. Just after you exit the lift, there’s a spot so steep it’s essentially a cliff face. As a matter of fact, if you stop on the catwalk and turn your skis downhill, the tips will jut out into thin air. However, that alarming pitch levels out into a gently sloped field flanked with towering pine trees.
Therefore, if you’re daring enough to go over the edge, you’re rewarded by the feeling of flying—of weightless freedom—followed by cruising into a soft playground of white crystals. It is absolutely exhilarating! Every time I’ve gasped in slightly terrified awe at the top, but I’ve ended up laughing in sheer delight while zooming to the bottom.
Yet despite the spine-tingling payoff, I’ve noticed that most skiers glide right past the precipice without stopping to consider the view, much less consider jumping off. Perhaps because the trail map designates Timbered Island as a “blue run” (which means the terrain is negotiable for skiers of average skill level), they’re seeking a cushy, nonjarring ride. Maybe they’ve become so accustomed to moderate inclines that they’re not even tempted to consider a riskier, more vertical route.
Choosing the safe but boring path is an apt metaphor for the years I spent rather numbly and halfheartedly pursuing God. As Francis Chan candidly describes in his book Crazy Love,
I called myself a Christian, was pretty involved in church, and tried to stay away from all of the things that “good Christians” avoid—drinking, drugs, sex, swearing. Christianity was simple: fight your desires in order to please God. Whenever I failed (which was often), I’d walk around feeling guilty and distant from God. In hindsight, I don’t think my church’s teachings were incorrect, just incomplete. My view of God was narrow and small.
Thankfully, I came to a spiritual cliff face that challenged my small, narrow view of God. I got to the edge of who I’d previously understood Jesus to be and risked going beyond it. And the reward has been much more liberating and exhilarating than anything I’ve ever experienced on skis. Choosing to explore past the boundaries of my incomplete perception has led me to a bigger and better view of our Redeemer. I’ve discovered Jesus to be much more confrontational and provocative than the pale imitation of Him I had settled for!
As we explore some of His wilder aspects for the next two hundred or so pages together, I really hope you’ll get a bigger and better view too. I hope you’ll sense the Holy Spirit drawing you into a riskier, more intimate, and less religious relationship with Jesus. I hope that it’ll reawaken the sense of adventure God hard-wired into your soul. That you’ll find yourself awed by His power and glory and laugh out loud with sheer delight over the fact that this majestically untamed Savior is madly in love with you!
Furthermore, although Untamed isn’t formatted like a traditional Bible study, I hope it will encourage you to experience Scripture in a fresh way. Each chapter includes an icebreaker question to prompt you to connect your own experience with the topic at hand. At the end of each chapter, you’ll also find questions in the “Living and Loving with Abandon” section geared toward helping you reflect on how the “wild side” of Jesus can impact your heart today. These questions are especially stimulating when discussed over coffee with friends! I believe you’ll find Untamed to be an interesting book-club selection, an engaging Sunday school curriculum, or even a useful tool to help your women’s Bible study group explore the life and ministry of Christ. I sincerely pray it’ll help you experience some of the same freedom God has been lavishing on me lately.
Most of all I pray it quickens your heart to wonder and worship over the mind-blowing miracle that King Jesus chooses us as the objects of His affection!