Book Review: Finding God In The Waves

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I am extremely happy to finally post my review about “Science Mike” McHargue’s new book, Finding God in the Waves: How I Lost My Faith And Found It Again Through Science. This book is easily near the top of my book recommendations for the year and one I have been excited about reading for months.

If you’re a regular reader here at Unboxing God, then conversations involving faith and doubt through a lens of modern science and history are not new to you.  But until recently, finding resources willing to discuss these ideas have resulted only in “pseudo-scientific” products focused more on twisting or discrediting science than dissecting the tenets of faith through it.  For those of you frustrated by this, Finding God in the Waves will be refreshing as it discusses God, faith, and modern Christianity through the lens of accepted scientific claims.  But this is no simple defense of orthodoxy.  Mike pulls no punches as he lays out both the claims of faith and the criticisms, side by side, examining both in a clear, concise, and easily readable manner. This is the single most important book on faith, doubt, and science that I have ever read.  Mike provides not only a rational understanding of God that works well within today’s understandings of science, but practical steps that anyone can implement to not only grow close to God, but to be transformed into what can only be described as the mind of Christ as well.

“This is the single most important book on faith, doubt, and science that I have ever read.  Mike provides not only a rational understanding of God that works well within today’s understandings of science, but practical steps that anyone can implement to not only grow close to God, but to be transformed into what can only be described as the mind of Christ as well.”

In Finding God In The Waves, Mike takes us on a journey that begins at what many would define as the pinnacle of success. As the youngest deacon in the history of his Southern Baptist church, a vice president of a highly successful ad agency, with a beautiful wife and two fantastic daughters, Mike had everything that he could ever ask for. Then it all came crashing down. It started when his Dad called a family meeting to announce that he had fallen in love with another woman, and that he was divorcing their mother.  In an effort to save his parents’ marriage, Mike dove headfirst into the scriptures, exploring deeper than he had ever attempted before. But instead of finding answers and solutions, he was surprised at the many contradictions, questions, and ethical quandaries. Rather than saving his parents’ marriage, his efforts at exploring the scriptures destroyed his faith, leaving him as a closeted atheist, afraid for the truth to get out.

Luckily for us, his story doesn’t end there.  Mike has always had an affinity for not only understanding science but explaining it in a way that people can easily understand.   With his faith shattered, Cosmology became his new passion, and he began to discuss and promote it online with as much energy as he once discussed his faith. Over time, his presence on social media grew to such a level that he received a personal invitation from NASA to tour and write about the Dryden Flight Research Center in California. Through an interesting chain of events, he also received an invitation to a conference in the same town and on the same weekend as his NASA tour, lead by one of the leading communicators in the American church at this time, Rob Bell.  In the hopes of learning communication tips that he could use at his job in Advertising, Mike agreed to attend.  It was there that he experienced an encounter with God that was so profound, and so transcendent, that he could only label it God.  But while his desire to know God returned, his ability to understand Him did not.

In Finding the God in the Waves, with keen insight and understanding, Mike shares his journey back to faith, not through apologetics but through science.  For those concerned, this is not another book attempting to twist the laws of physics to allow for a young Earth, to explain how Jonah could have survived in the belly of a whale, or how God could have possibly made the sun stand still for Joshua.  Instead, Mike dives head first into physics, cosmology, and even brain science in an effort to discover both how God can be experienced within our current age of understanding, but also the benefits of doing so.  In these pages, we learn how contemplating God affects the brain, how prayer that focuses on a loving God not only lowers blood pressure and stress, but actually increases the growth of healthy brain tissue, and how contemplation of an angry God does the reverse.  We discover real, proven practices that anyone can easily integrate into daily life that will allow them to easily experience and benefit from the love of God again.

“If you are someone who has found your faith eroding, or has lost it all together, then this book may provide the lifeline you need to not only believe in God again, but to truly experience His presence in your own life once more.”

I readily admit that this book may be challenging.  If you are content with your current traditional Christian faith and find yourself experiencing God and interacting with the world around you with love and committed service, then this book may not be for you. But if you are someone who has found your faith eroding, or has lost it all together, then this book may provide the lifeline you need to not only believe in God again, but to truly experience His presence in your own life once more.

-About “Science” Mike:
sciencemikeMike McHargue is a Christian turned atheist turned follower of Jesus who uses his story to help people know God in an age of science. Mike is the host and co-host of two podcasts – Ask Science Mike and The Liturgists Podcast – that have attracted a curious following among Christians, the spiritually interested, and the religiously unaffiliated. He is an in-demand speaker at conferences and churches around the country, and he writes for the Storyline blog and Sojourners and Relevant magazines.

You can learn more about the book at http://findinggodinthewaves.com/
You can listen to Ask Science Mike at http://mikemchargue.com/asksciencemike/
You can listen to The Liturgists Podcast at http://www.theliturgists.com/podcast/

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