Wild at Heart

Last night it dawned on me I have yet to post about Wild at Heart by John Eldredge. I haven’t read the whole book now and it’s buried under a bunch of other books I want to read “next”.

When I first heard about this book I journaled my initial thoughts so I’ll look those up now and post what I wrote then.

Wow . . . that was back in October. Boy, time likes to fly.

I found out today Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret of a Man’s Soul by John Eldredge is a favorite book of a couple of my good friends. I was instantly curious what this book was about and since they both like it so much I wanted to read it too.

Before the book arrives from Amazon I decided to read a little about the author. He grew up with an alcoholic father and didn’t profess Christianity until his adult years. He’s worked for Focus on the Family, started Ransomed HeartMinistries and has written many books.

I saw somewhere that there has been much controversy over this book of his so I looked up articles critiquing it. Below are two of the best articles I read.

(I strongly suggest you read these articles if you’ve read books by the Eldredges or are planning to.)

I won’t go into what these articles say because they are so well written and concise it would be difficult to paraphrase them. If what these articles say about how and what Eldredge writes is true, the book sounds very misguiding which also makes the author so.

One point I will make however, is that Eldredge uses little scripture to back up his claims about human hearts and what he does use are bits and pieces of verses which have been re-worded to fit the meaning he needs to make his points. He does this a lot throughout the book and since the book’s publication and many critiques of it since he has had ample opportunity to correct these mistakes (if they are such) . . . which he hasn’t. So pretty clearly, Eldredge wants to conform what God says to Eldredge’s own thinking rather than conform his thinking to God’s.

Toward the end of one of these book reviews a topic was brought up I had thought of earlier. This book, Wild at Heart, has been a huge bestseller; since its publication over a million copies have sold. I am always wary of such instant bestsellers. Our culture today largely gravitates towards books not that lead to God and show humans as helpless sinners in need of a Savior but rather feel-good books which let us know “You’re okay, God understands you because he’s a lot like you, and it’s okay to sin” but this completely unbiblical message is masked in just enough scripture to disguise it to the untrained eye—and that’s what most Christians are today: untrained in the truth.

I hate that books like this have been published; they’re such an easy trap for young people to fall into. Young people today take things at face value and believe lies simply because they hear raving reviews about a book when instead they should be thinking hard, digging deeply and comparing closely to scripture to see if what they are reading is supported by truth.

In November, when I received this book and Captivating and took a look at each of them I wrote:

The Eldredge’s mentality is person centered. They try to make God’s character like theirs instead of the other way around. They grossly twist and misuse scripture to their own benefit.

If you’ve read Wild at Heart or were/are planning to I recommend you also read The Mark of a Man: Following Christ’s Example of Masculinity by Elisabeth Elliot.


2 responses to “Wild at Heart

  1. Hi Laurel, I’ve enjoyed looking over your blog. You’re a clear writer and thinker…which is a gift. My wife Amy is the same way.

    My wife read Captivating and loved it. She’s also been to one of Stasi Eldredge’s Captivating retreats and God used it to really set her free. I think if you actually read the book you might find that Stasi and you actually see eye to eye. I just read John’s new book Beautiful Outlaw (which is about Jesus) and I’ll be honest, I’m more in love with Jesus now because of that book than ever. It’s as if it pulled me in to falling in love with Jesus all over again.

    Anyway, keep up the good work…I’m sure you’ll be a published author some day.

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