Unleashed: Release the Untamed Faith Within

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Overview

Two thousand years later the call to follow Christ has been repacked to be smooth and trouble-free, filled with opportunity and promise but lacking risk, passion, and sacrifice. Is this really what Jesus died for? If He chose the way of the cross, where would He hesitate leading us? Is it possible that to follow Jesus is to live your life completely unleashed?

Jesus never made a pristine call to a proper or safe religion. Jesus beckons His followers to a path that is far from ...

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Overview

Two thousand years later the call to follow Christ has been repacked to be smooth and trouble-free, filled with opportunity and promise but lacking risk, passion, and sacrifice. Is this really what Jesus died for? If He chose the way of the cross, where would He hesitate leading us? Is it possible that to follow Jesus is to live your life completely unleashed?

Jesus never made a pristine call to a proper or safe religion. Jesus beckons His followers to a path that is far from the easy road. It is a path filled with adventure, uncertainty, and unlimited possibilities- the only path that can fulfill the deepest longings and desires of your heart.

This is the barbarian way: to give your heart to the only One who can make you fully alive. To love Him with simplicity and intensity. To unleash the untamed faith within. To be consumed by the presence of a passionate and compassionate God. To go where He sends you, no matter the cost.

Previously released as The Barbarian Way

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400202546
  • Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/3/2011
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 1,087,931
  • Product dimensions: 4.90 (w) x 6.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Erwin R. McManus (BA, University of North Carolina; MDiv, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary) serves as lead pastor and cultural architect of Mosaic, a diverse, multi-ethnic church based in Los Angeles, California. As founder of Awaken, an entrepreneurial community, Erwin collaborates with a team of dreamers and innovators who specialize in the field of developing and unleashing personal and organizational creativity. A national and international consultant on culture, change, leadership, and creativity, he partners with Bethel Theological Seminary as a futurist and distinguished lecturer. He is the author of the ECPA Silver Medallion Award-winning book, An Unstoppable Force, and Seizing Your Divine Moment, Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul, and The Barbarian Way.

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Read an Excerpt

The barbarian way

UNLEASHED THE UNTAMED FAITH WITHIN
By ERWIN RAPHAEL McMANUS

Thomas Nelson

Copyright © 2011 Erwin Raphael McManus
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4002-0254-6


Chapter One

THE BARBARIAN INVASION

Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty man of valor, but he was the son of a harlot; and Gilead begot Jephthah. Gilead's wife bore sons; and when his wife's sons grew up, they drove Jephthah out, and said to him, "You shall have no inheritance in our father's house, for you are the son of another woman." Then Jephthah fled from his brothers and dwelt in the land of Tob; and worthless men banded together with Jephthah and went out raiding with him.

It came to pass after a time that the people of Ammon made war against Israel. And so it was, when the people of Ammon made war against Israel, that the elders of Gilead went to get Jephthah from the land of Tob. Then they said to Jephthah, "Come and be our commander, that we may fight against the people of Ammon."

So Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, "Did you not hate me, and expel me from my father's house? Why have you come to me now when you are in distress?"

And the elders of Gilead said to Jephthah, "That is why we have turned again to you now, that you may go with us and fight against the people of Ammon, and be our head over all the inhabitants of Gilead."

So Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, "If you take me back home to fight against the people of Ammon, and the LORD delivers them to me, shall I be your head?"

And the elders of Gilead said to Jephthah, "The LORD will be a witness between us, if we do not do according to your words." Then Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him head and commander over them. (Judges 11:1–11 NKJV, italics added)

On our way to Belfast, Northern Ireland, we made a stop in Paisley, Scotland. My wife, Kim, my twelve-year-old daughter, Mariah, and I were on a Hollywood version of a spiritual pilgrimage. (If you walk into our living room, you will find hanging as a centerpiece an exact replica of the sword that William Wallace made famous to the non-Scottish masses through Mel Gibson's Braveheart.) I was standing in the middle of the Paisley Abbey where Wallace was educated as a boy. I took my time as I looked reverently at the stained glass that remains a memorial to Wallace's heroics (he didn't look anything like Mel Gibson), yet it was a story about Robert the Bruce that struck me most and has stayed with me ever since.

Robert the Bruce was the Scottish noble whose character is most remembered for betraying Wallace, but he later rose up to lead Scotland to freedom after Wallace's execution. While we were standing in the abbey, Scottish pastor James Pettigrew shared a tale of Robert the Bruce that is a mixture of history and legend.

He died in 1329 at the age of fifty-four. Shortly before his death, Robert the Bruce requested that his heart be removed from his body and taken on crusade by a worthy knight. James Douglas, one of his closest friends, was at his bedside and took on the responsibility. The heart of Robert the Bruce was embalmed and placed in a small container that Douglas carried around his neck. In every battle that Douglas fought, he literally carried the heart of his king pressed against his chest.

In the early spring of 1330, Douglas sailed from Scotland to Granada, Spain, and engaged in a campaign against the Moors. In an ill-fated battle, Douglas found himself surrounded, and in this situation death was both certain and imminent. In that moment Douglas reached for the heart strapped around his neck, flung the heart into the enemy's midst, and cried out, "Fight for the heart of your king!" One historian quoted Douglas as shouting, "Forward, brave heart, as ever thou were wont to do, and Douglas will follow his king's heart or die!" The motto of the Douglas clan to which the present duke belongs is even to this day simply, "Forward."

A TRIBE CALLED FORWARD

Although anyone who understands the heart of God knows that the Crusades were a tragic lesson in missing the point, the power of this story awakens within me a primal longing that I am convinced waits to be unleashed within everyone who is a follower of Jesus Christ. To belong to God is to belong to His heart. If we have responded to the call of Jesus to leave everything and follow Him, then there is a voice within us crying out, "Fight for the heart of your King!"

Yet Christianity over the past two thousand years has moved from a tribe of renegades to a religion of conformists. Those who choose to follow Jesus become participants in an insurrection. To claim we believe is simply not enough. The call of Jesus is one that demands action. Jesus began His public ministry with a simple invitation: "Come, follow Me." His closing instructions to His disciples can be summarized in one word, "Go!" A quick survey of the modern church would lead you to believe His invitation was "Come, and listen," and His closing mandate would be summarized in the one word "No!" The tribe of Jesus, above all people, should rightly carry the banner, "Forward."

I know the imagery of this story is nothing less than barbaric, but maybe that's the point. The invitation of Jesus is a revolutionary call to fight for the heart of humanity. We are called to an unconventional war using only the weapons of faith, hope, and love. Nevertheless, this war is no less dangerous than any war ever fought. And for those of us who embrace the cause of Christ, the cost to participate in the mission of God is nothing less than everything we are and everything we have.

Strangely enough, though, some who come to Jesus Christ seem to immediately and fully embrace this barbarian way. They live their lives with every step moving forward and with every fiber of their being fighting for the heart of their King. Jesus Christ has become the all-consuming passion of their lives. They are not about religion or position. They have little patience for institutions or bureaucracies. Their lack of respect for tradition or ritual makes them seem uncivilized to those who love religion. When asked if they are Christians, their answer might surprisingly be no, they are passionate followers of Jesus Christ. They see Christianity as a world religion, in many ways no different from any other religious system. Whether Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, or Christianity, they're not about religion; they're about advancing the revolution Jesus started two thousand years ago.

This is the simplicity of the barbarian way. If you are a follower of Christ, then you are called to fight for the heart of your King. It is a life fueled by passion—a passion for God and a passion for people. The psalmist tells us to delight ourselves in the Lord, and He will give us the desires of our hearts (Psalm 37:4). When Christianity becomes just another religion, it focuses on requirements. Just to keep people in line, we build our own Christian civilization and then demand that everyone who believes in Jesus become a good citizen.

It's hard to imagine that Jesus would endure the agony of the Cross just to keep us in line. Jesus began a revolution to secure our freedom. The new covenant that He established puts its trust not in the law, but in the transforming power of God's Spirit living within us. The revolution of the human heart would fuel the life and vitality of this movement. We would delight in God, and He would give us the desires of our hearts. With our hearts burning for God, we would move forward with the freedom to pursue the passions burning within us.

RAW LOVE

My daughter, Mariah, and I were eating Thai food in San Diego. We were getting some important dad-and-daughter time. There's nothing like one-on-one to create an environment for some real heart-to-heart conversation. After she reminded me that I was the only one between the two of us who liked Thai, she began to open her heart and bring me into her dreams.

"Daddy, one day I want to make a billion dollars, and I want to give it all away. I want to help the poor; I want to help the needy. I want to make a billion dollars, and I don't care if I have nothing, but I want to give it all to help people."

As I was listening to her dream, I thought, I can fix this. Because the dream was almost right.

But she kept saying, "I want to make a billion dollars and give it away and help the poor, and I don't care if I'm homeless or have nothing. I just want to give it away to help people."

I said, "Mariah, I want you to make a billion dollars and give to the poor and the needy, but it's not a good idea that you have nothing. Then you would be needy and somebody would have to take care of you and you wouldn't be responsible."

"I don't care if I don't have anything, Daddy," Mariah responded. "I just want to make a billion dollars and give it away. I don't care if I'm homeless. I don't care if I have nothing."

"But if you're homeless, our taxes would have to pay for you."

Looking at me as if to say, Daddy, you just don't understand, she continued, "I don't care if I have nothing. I just want to make a billion dollars and give it all away. I don't care if I have nothing."

I thought, Okay, I'm not really helping here. I was trying to help her understand that she needed to keep something, restructure it, and reinvest it so that she could make another billion and help another group of people. I just wasn't able to help her with her dream. And I thought, A metaphor—that will help.

"Honey, let's say you're a large tree bearing fruit for people to eat because they are hungry, and you want to give all your fruit away because you want to feed everyone, care for everyone. But because of that, you didn't care about your roots, and so you said, 'I'm going to uproot myself. Who cares about the soil and the water? I just want to bear all the fruit I can.' And then you will die. Then the next year you won't be able to bear fruit. It's better to take care of your roots, too, so that you can keep bearing fruit year after year after year."

She said, "Daddy, what in the world do roots have to do with this?"

I knew I wasn't making progress. We left the place and went to the car. I unlocked it, and she got into the car quickly. By the time I slid into the driver's seat, she was sobbing, and I didn't know what was going on. I asked, "Mariah, are you okay?"

Just drenched in tears, she looked at me and said, "Daddy, I want to change the world, but you can't appreciate my dream. I want to change the world." She continued, "I didn't say I would be homeless; I said I didn't care if I became homeless. I want to change the world. Can't you just hear my dream?"

I realized that instead of nurturing and unleashing the dream being born out of her heart for God, I was domesticating her dream and trying to civilize her raw and untamed faith, which was ironic since I was so excited that this was her heart.

"Well, honey, I am excited about your dream," I said. "Don't you think that we were a small part of trying to nurture your heart to have that dream?"

She said, "Yeah, but I don't think you're getting it."

I said, "Well, I get it now. I get it now."

It took me a little while, but suddenly I saw it clearly. I was experiencing a barbarian invasion. Mariah's heart was beating to the rhythm of the heart of God. And her dreams were way too raw for me. I didn't see it initially, but I was trying to civilize her instead of unleashing the untamed faith within her. After all, I am her dad. It's okay if I live a life of irrational faith and breathtaking adventure. I want something different for her. I want her to have security and safety—you know, a predictable, boring, mundane life where I never have to worry about her again. In that moment I realized Mariah would have none of that. For her there is only one path. Even at twelve she has already committed to it. Be still my heart, but my daughter has chosen the barbarian way out of civilization. And it's for this simple reason that this book is dedicated to her.

OF WIND AND FIRE

Twenty-five years ago I was a part of the barbarian invasion. I knew little about God, but I wanted to know nothing else but God. I was overwhelmed that Someone as extraordinary as Jesus of Nazareth would have any interest or desire to embrace someone like me. Even before I knew what was written on the pages of the sacred text that we know as the Bible, I knew that I would give my heart fully to whatever I would learn was on God's heart. I was a follower of Jesus, and for me there was no turning back.

Over the years I have met perhaps thousands who have been a part of this barbarian invasion. From my brother, Alex, who swore allegiance to Christ, even though he had no idea that heaven existed; to my wife, Kim, who as a child growing up in a foster home cried out to Jesus that she would go anywhere He wanted and do anything He wanted her to do. In their unique voices they were committing to move forward and fight for the heart of their King.

Perhaps the tragedy of our time is that such an overwhelming number of us who declare Jesus as Lord have become domesticated—or, if you will, civilized. We have lost the simplicity of our early faith. Beyond that, we have lost the passion and power of that raw, untamed, and primal faith. Maybe John was alluding to that in the Apocalypse when he told the church of Ephesus that they had lost their first love (Revelation 2:1–4). God's command to Israel was simply, "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts" (Deuteronomy 6:5–6). And when Jesus was asked, "What is the greatest of all the commandments?" and "How do I inherit eternal life?" His answer was the same, except to add that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves (Mark 10:17–19; 12:28–31).

The barbarian way is about love, intimacy, passion, and sacrifice. Barbarians love to live and live to love. For them God is life, and their mission is to reconnect humanity to Him. Their passion is that each of us might live in intimate communion with Him who died for us. The barbarian way is a path of both spirit and truth. The soul of the barbarian is made alive by the presence of Jesus.

As John the Baptist reminded us, the evidence that Jesus is the Christ is that He baptizes us in both Spirit and fire. Barbarians are guided by the wind of God and ignited by the fire of God. The way of the barbarian can be found only by listening to the voice of the Spirit. The barbarian way can be known only by those who have the heart of God. The steps of the barbarian are guided by the footprints of Jesus. Barbarians see the invisible and hear the inaudible because their souls are alive to God.

If I know nothing else about you, if you are a follower of Jesus Christ, I know this without question: there is within you a raw and untamed faith waiting to be unleashed. When we come to the living God, He consumes who we are and gives us life that is fueled by His presence. You have been recreated to live in a raw and primal spirituality. Jesus came to ignite a fire within you that would consume you and ignite you. Jesus the King came to fight for your heart. If He has won your heart, then to follow your heart will always lead you to follow the heart of God. He will always lead you to advance forward behind enemy lines to win the hearts of those who do not yet know Him or love Him.

A FASHIONABLE FIGHT

One of my favorite characters in Braveheart was the Irish guy who joined William Wallace in his crusade. Remember him, the crazy guy who talked to God? Appropriately his name was Stephen. His most memorable quote was this: "The Almighty says this must be a fashionable fight. It draws the finest people." Of course, any civilized Christian knows why he's crazy. Every devout believer—in fact, any person of faith from any religious persuasion, whether Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, or whatever—believes in prayer, but we all know prayer is supposed to be us talking to God. We get a little nervous when someone starts hearing from God. What has the Almighty been saying to you lately? And when was the last time He called you to participate in a fashionable fight?

(Continues...)



Excerpted from The barbarian way by ERWIN RAPHAEL McMANUS Copyright © 2011 by Erwin Raphael McManus. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction....................xi
1. The Barbarian Invasion....................1
2. The Barbarian Call....................19
3. The Barbarian Tribe....................57
4. The Barbarian Revolt....................107
Acknowledgments....................143
About the Author....................145
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Customer Reviews

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  • Posted May 23, 2012

    "Unleashed" is about having a barbarian faith - a fait

    "Unleashed" is about having a barbarian faith - a faith that isn't tame or something easily contained. Those who are barbarians have a faith in God that may seem to go against the norm - it's a big faith. We can look to the Bible for examples of barbarians: "God would continually call them to believe things they could not see, become someone they were not, accomplish feats that were clearly beyond their abilities, and then hold them accountable for it."

    This book is about encouraging you in your faith. It's about stirring you up to want more of God. I've read Erwin's book Soul Cravings was excited to read Unleashed! I liked that it's a short read so I could definitely pick it up and read it again when I wanted a quick read. Overall a good book. I felt at times that he was repeating himself in the point he was trying to make but it worked. I liked the touches of humor he added through out and the genuineness from which he spoke. It all came together nicely for a decent read.

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  • Posted March 16, 2012

    In Unleashed, Erwin McManus reiterates that being Christian is n

    In Unleashed, Erwin McManus reiterates that being Christian is not synonymous to being safe or civilized. According to the book, followers of Christ are meant to live life on the edge -- as barbarians.

    This seems to be one of the central themes in most of his books.

    Previously released as The Barbarian Way, Unleashed gets the point across with a series of anecdotes about McManus’ wife, children, church members and even about himself.

    Being a huge fan, I enjoyed McManus’ prose (as always) and since I had already read The Barbarian Way, this book was a timely reminder that Christianity is not as ritualistic and bureaucratic as it sometimes seems to be.

    The book was especially pertinent to me as I have always felt stifled in church.

    It was a simple book with a simple theme and this was a good thing. Although I did find myself wanting to read something more in-depth, this book had a message and it was best communicated this way.

    While the book made me feel good, it is far from being a feel-good book. It reminded me that truly following Christ will never be easy but that’s okay because it wasn’t meant to be.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted May 31, 2011

    The Barbarian Way.

    I just finished reading a book titled "Unleashed" by Erwin Raphael McManus. I have to admit that in the beginning, the book didn't seem to catch my attention. The author seem to be we writing in circles around what he was really trying to get at. But then I realized that I needed to pay closer attention to what I was reading.
    This book, which was previously released as "The Barbarian Way", is a book about living the way God intended us to live. Our society tends to offer Christians a nice and easy, safe and carefree way of living. McManus points out that the Bible doesn't and never has called us to that. In fact, the bible calls us to be Christ followers, which means trusting in God ALWAYS, even when we don't know where He is leading us, or what His plans are. 'Unleashed' is about finding your inner barbarian and going against what this society says we should do but seeking Christ instead.
    McManus offers a simple read with challenging content in his book. He urges and encourages us to change our hearts and mindset to that of the barbarian way. If you are looking for a life changing book that can make you feel more alive*, I would recommend this book for you.

    *You must decide and commit to the change before it can actually take place in your life. The way to do that is to commit EVERYTHING to God, and to follow Him fully, no matter the cost.

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  • Posted May 31, 2011

    The way of the barbarian...

    Unleashed by Erwin Raphael McManus offers a biographical narrative of spiritual seeking alongside powerful theological and philosophical ponderance... in only 146 pages.

    "This is the barbarian way: to give your heart to the only One who can make you fully alive. To love Him with simplicity and intensity. To unleash the untamed faith within. To be consumed by the presence of a passionate and compassionate God. To go where He sends you, no matter the cost." - Unleashed, McManus, back cover

    This is the story of a seeker desiring to be fearless in Christ. This is the story of a parent as McManus recounts all he learned by watching his bold and faithful daughter doing dangerous things for God. This is a story of the complexity in answering the simple call of "Come, follow Me."

    "A quick survey of the modern church would lead you to believe His invitation was "Come, and listen," and His closing mandate would be summarized in the one word 'No!' The tribe of Jesus, above all people, should rightly carry the banner, 'Forward.'" - Unleashed, McManus, p. 5

    Welcome to the way of the barbarian; McManus' handbook to radically following Christ in pure exhilaration.

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  • Posted May 16, 2011

    Unleashed: Release the Untamed Faith Within by Erwin McManus

    Erwin McManus challenges the all too popular safe Christianity with a call to "Unleash: Release the Untamed Faith Within." McManus uses the life of a barbarian (based on his previous book) as a metaphor for Christian living. A barbarian lives is not tame, but rather takes risk. McManus applies this to the everyday life and appeals for Christians to do the same. He invites the reader to a life away from mediocrity and safety into a life of God's leading which includes risk and possibly even danger.

    This is an easy read that made me think about my life and if I am living out my Christian faith safely, or if I am following the Spirit's leading despite the risk. I believe McManus did a great job at challenging the struggles of today's Christian faith. All too often we begin our Christian walk passionate and willing to do whatever it takes to spread the good news, but end up falling back into a dispassionate and halfhearted faith. McManus seems to place some blame on the "culture of safety." We are brought up to always be safe, rather than adventurous and risk-taking, which the latter is seen as a common theme within Scripture.

    One hesitation I have with the book is the barbarian metaphor and sometimes the way it is communicated. I like the metaphor, but would be careful with extending it too far. I also found myself initially disagreeing with some of the polarizations that he used. Some of the ideas (like routine, tradition, ritual) he attributed to the "civilized Christian" are not necessarily bad, but it is placing them over the Lord's leading that we should stray away from.


    I received this book free from the publisher through BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted May 11, 2011

    A Way to Live a Life for God

    Previously released as The Barbarian Way, Unleashed is about showing the individual the way to live life "the barbarian way." Erwin Raphael McManus shows the way to give your complete life to God, thus fulfilling everything your heart has ever desired in a relationship with God. It may not be the easiest way but it is the way that we need to be in our relationship with God and Jesus. My Thoughts- I had a difficult time getting into this book. I thought the book was well written, but the flow and writing style was not enough to capture my undivided attention. The message of the book is very important though, because we do need to live a life "the barbarian way." It has been for far too many years that we as Christian people in industrialized nations have chosen to live a safe Christian life. We do need to live for God the way he would like us to live and follow him, not our way. I do think that everyone should try this book, because we need to change our way of thinking about our relationship with God. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.

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  • Posted April 20, 2011

    Unleashed by Erwin Raphael McManus ~ Book Review

    The call of Jesus is a call to live in the world as citizens of an entirely different kingdom. In its primitive state, the good news could never be separated from the invitation of Jesus to "Come, follow Me." He never lied about the danger or cost associated with becoming His follower. He told them up front, "I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves." (Matthew 10:16) ~ Erwin Raphael McManus There is a rumbling in the body of Christ, among those truly following Jesus, to cast off anything hindering their relationship with Him, and follow Jesus as the original twelve. It is a desire to follow Christ with simplicity, untamed, and intensity, consumed by the presence of God, willing to go where He sends you: the barbarian way. Unleashed by Erwin Raphael McManus, previously released as The Barbarian Way, is an invitation to live as Jesus, on the unpaved, uncertain road, in total obedience to Him. The author, through personal illustrations, often humorous, shows the clarity, uncomplicated original call of Jesus to Follow Me. God desires us to surrender our lives to Him in the unknown, even if it means a life of suffering, hardship, and disappointment. He states, The church today has become so civilized that the benefits of our faith have become more precious and more valuable to us that the Benefactor of our faith. Every person in Scripture who accomplished great things for God had this untamed, radical, barbarian way. They were willing to go anywhere and do anything God asked. Total surrender. The author powerfully states toward the end of Unleashed, Domesticated Christians are far too willing to abdicate the battle for the soul of the world.We build churches that become nothing more than hiding places for the faithful while pretending that our actions are for the good of the world..In contrast Jesus calls us to a different way. He tells is this is a battle of kingdoms. He insists that if we are His followers, we must not live in a world defined only by the material. This little but mighty book is not for the faint of heart. It is written to followers of Jesus, any age, who desire to be more like The Master, following Him in word, deed, and philosophy. This book returns to the original church, those who were willing to be persecuted and even killed for their faith. Are you sold out to Jesus enough to follow Him completely? Are you willing to peel away the world to be in it but not of it? Read this book to energize your walk with the Lord and inspire you to go where He sends you, no matter what the cost.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2011

    Unleashed by Erwind Raphael McManus

    Hi there! I just got an awesome new book from booksneeze- "Unleashed" by Erwin Raphael McManus. Before I start in, I have to let you know that I received this book for free through Thomas Nelson publisher's Booksneeze program. (It's some law thing) Anyway, I really like this book. It's a book about living your faith passionately. The thing that plagues a lot of Christians (especially American ones) is that they live quiet faiths- silent, no real connection to Jesus. They're "Christians" so that they can say they have a religion. American Christians have no passion for God, no real commitment. But as Mr. McManus says in his book (or rather, on the back of it:)) "Two thousand years later the call to follow Christ has been repackaged to be smooth and trouble-free, filled with opportunity and promise but lacking risk, passion, and sacrifice. Jesus never made a pristine call to a proper or safe religion. Jesus beckons His followers to a path that is far from the easy road. It is a path filled with adventure, uncertainty, and unlimited possibilities- the only path that can fulfill the deepest longings and desiers of your heart." I agree wholeheartedly with Mr. McManus. Be forwarned- this book may cause convictions, commitments, and maybe just a little craziness (for Jesus:)). I definitely give this book five out of five stars.

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  • Posted April 17, 2011

    Inspiring!

    Rather than living a long life, are you willing to live a life worth living? Are you willing to lose everything on God's behalf to gain everything He desires for you? Erwin Raphael McManus presents these and other thought-provoking questions in his book Unleashed: Release the Untamed Faith Within. Using the biblical examples of John the Baptist and Peter, and the ultimate example of Jesus, he shows what it means to live the barbarian life. He sprinkles the book with illustrations about his daughter Mariah, who is a full-fledged barbarian of beauty (displayed on the cover of the book exhibiting the essence of the title). The author, a first-generation Christian who wasn't raised according to all the 'rules', fights the Christian cliché "the safest place to be is in the center of God's will." Instead, he argues that it is a dangerous and costly place to be. God's will for us is not about our comfort. Nor is it a cattle call for us to live the same kind of life as everyone else. His desire is not to conform us but transform us, not to make us compliant but to make us creative, and not to domesticate us but to liberate us. The "civilized" faith is ritualistic, safe, reasonable, routine, stable, follows requirements, keeps people in line, focuses on being a good citizen, and follows the letter of the law. The barbarian life is courageous, sacrificial, visionary, intimate, passionate, loving, challenging, mysterious, risky, listens to the voice of the Spirit, experiences God, focuses on a mission, and lives the spirit of the law. All that we are meant to do is through the outward flowing of faith, hope and love. For me, this book was refreshing, revitalizing, and inspiring! It is thought-provoking as well as entertaining and easy to read in a sitting or two. After reading this book, I found it easier to embrace my quirky self and to stop trying to be what everyone else wants or expects me to be. Instead my focus is to be guided by the footprints of Jesus. We are supposed to do whatever Jesus calls us to do the moment it is clear to us. I want to be a barbarian!

    To comply with regulations by the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR Part 255, I am disclosing that BookSneeze® provided me a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

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  • Posted April 16, 2011

    Living a life UNLEASHED

    "Unleashed" written by Erwin McManus inspires readers to live a life that follows Christ with reckless abandon or to live the "Barbarian" way. Mc Manus states, the "Barbarian way" is to give your heart to God, who can make you fully alive, with an untamed faith. He describes this as a narrow journey that only few will take, but it will lead you to a life completely unleashed. This book is a very quick read and easily can be read in one sitting. One of my favorite quotes " the driving purpose behind this barbarian revolt is to liberate every person who longs to find freedom in God." How many of us long to find freedom in God? We must remove all the junk that keeps us from God in order to do so. Television, internet, inappropriate movies, language, lust, it all keeps us from living a life unleashed, we must remove every obstacle that hinders us.

    This book gave me a good dose of reality and helped me looked at areas in my life where I need to remove obstacles because they are hindrance. I recommend this book to anyone who is trying to live faith out in a different way or to anyone who is seeking of living the cookie cutter Christian life. This will change your entire perspective. It won't be easy to live a life like this and Jesus doesn't promise any easy life, but an abundant one, unleashed.



    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising

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  • Posted April 15, 2011

    Good Book

    Unleashed is a short, quick read about releasing the untamed faith within and choosing the barbarian way. You might be thinking, "Barbarian way? What is that?"




    Simply put, it is to give your heart to the Only one who can make you fully alive.




    It was an interesting concept that I enjoyed reading about. I agree, it's very common now a days for Christians to fall into a lull and forget their first love, their passion, their fire. In fact, it's even dangerous.




    I loved all the stories about his daughter Mariah, his big mouth at church meetings, him letting his son jump off the roof (all I can say on that one is...read the book!), the miracle about God sending snow to just let someone know that He loves them, and much, much more.




    Plus, I really liked the cover of this book and the title. I don't know why, but as soon as I saw that cover, I knew it was the author's daughter, Mariah, on the front. He described her so well, with her passion to help people, that her picture on the front really sums up the whole book. Free and unleashed.




    I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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