I got the privilege of reviewing Joshua Becker’s new book Living With Less this month. It was released last Wednesday Aug 15.
It was not my intent to turn this blog into a bunch of reviews and now I am doing 2 in one month. Trust me, this is not going to be the new norm 🙂 Just a coincidence that 2 of my favorite bloggers happen to be publishing in the same month.
For full disclosure I received a free digital copy of this book. Joshua had a post up on his site asking for bloggers to review and I applied to be a reviewer in exchange for a book (a pretty cool perk of blogging). I am not being paid in any other way. I agreed to post about the book, but this is my honest review of the book.
I enjoyed this book. It is a shorter book but it covers the topic well. It has everything I love – minimalism, Christianity, and personal story all wrapped up into one.
Joshua, author of Becoming Minimalist (a great minimalist blog if you haven’t found him already) has tried to keep his blog just minimalism and not mix in religion. However, his day job is a pastor and he is more than qualified to write on the subject of Minimalism and Christianity.
I feel I can connect with Joshua’s minimalism more than other minimalists I read about on the internet. He is a family guy and really takes the idea of minimalism beyond actual material possessions. It isn’t about the stuff. Material stuff is a barrier and removing it isn’t what life is about. What life is about is something we can seek better when we aren’t bogged down and busy with so much stuff.
The book is written to Christian teens. He has a passion for helping them understand minimalism at a young age and that life isn’t about just collecting things. He does a great job in that. The book is short, easy to understand, clearly connects minimalist concepts and the Bible, and has great age appropriate examples. It is a great book to give to a teen in your life.
However, these are big and hard concepts. … I mean they are simple, but they seem to go against everything we see everywhere. To tell a kid they don’t need to graduate from college, get married, get as big a house as they can afford, new cars, a few kids and keep climbing the corporate ladder so they can keep upgrading this lifestyle through the eternity of their lives is a lot like speaking Chinese to a Nebraskan farm kid (no offence to either).
Those of us who are just learning some of these ideas mid life wish we could have learned them sooner, and want to tell our younger selves. I believe we should try and tell kids, but I think everyone matures in some of these ways at different rates.
That being said, I think this is a great book to give to teens, but I think the book is just as relevant to any age starting to look at minimalism and simplicity. I think as Christians we know in our heart we aren’t supposed to be living out materialistic lives but we also aren’t sure about what leaving that would mean.
Not so great a book if you don’t want to read about religion. This book is very Biblically based. Check it out on Amazon here.
I read his Inside-Out Simplicity book earlier this year and it was very good as well.