October 14, 2013 by eneubauer
Living by Faith, Dwelling in Doubt has got to be one of the best books I have read this year. In all honesty, I have been following Kyle R. Cupp on Vox Nova (Blog), Facebook and anywhere else I can catch his perspective on life. In addition, I was so interested in his writing and perspective that I asked to meet with him to get a better understanding of his story and the circumstances that brought him to write this book.
Kudos to Loyola Press for signing this author and sharing his story. Let me begin by saying, no spoilers! However, if you are interested in faith, the journey of faith and God (whatever you understand Him to be) this is a must read book.
First, it is rare that an individual (much less an author or public figure) will actually share honest insights about life, the personal journey of faith, and the struggles that accompany us all in this present age. Kyle does a masterful job at telling or retelling his own, personal story – detailing the stumbling blocks and stepping stones that make life what it actually is. From childhood, through his years growing up in a home with a Catholic mom and Buddhist dad and then into the present day – Kyle details his story. His ability to share his journey and keep the reader hooked is unbelievable. In addition, he does this in only 120 pages. Having been required to write in grad school I know just how tough it is to tell your story and all the details in such a concise manner – but Kyle manages to do it. Wonderful.
Second, in addition to his refreshingly honest style, that was not manufactured, he also talks about the details of his faith and sometimes not so much faith journey. What makes this book different from the others – the brutal honesty and emotional vulnerability. His story isn’t necessarily about lowly beginnings and the ascent to triumph but about the reality of consistent struggle, finding ones way through life to faith in the midst of so much uncertainty and in a world that offers a multiplicity of faith and non-faith options.
The facts are that all of us, Christian and non-Christian, come face to face with a ongoing series of life situations, ideas and / or concepts that shake our collective presuppositions to the ground. Kyle invites the reader in to take a first hand look at his own questioning, construction, deconstruction and rebuilding in a shaky and uncertain world. He details his own life situations, many of which the reader has experienced and some that you have not, that challenged him through out his life. What is most interesting is that, in the midst of it all, he has lived to tell the story. He has made it through the madness only to share and invite us in to walk with him in the uncertainty of our present reality. He not only invites us in but joins us on the journey!
Enjoy the book and don’t forget to share your thoughts.