Book Review: Real Church by Larry Crabb

“…God is a party happening… I’m invited to the party… church was designed by God to be the dance studio…”

For 155+ pages, Larry Crabb unpacks the idea that church should help usher us into the perichoretic (ooo, big word! thanks for that one Scot McKnight!) dance enjoyed by the Trinity where we gain a better view of grace and God’s joyous love for us and give that same grace and love to the world around us. Each chapter is an honest and vulnerable (on the part of Larry Crabb) exploration of questions Crabb poses about why he doesn’t like church, why some people do like going, what would make a church one Crabb would wholeheartedly attend, and what attitudes we should have when evaluating “real church.”

As I read through this book, I found myself resonating with much of what Crabb was questioning. At times, I wondered if Crabb were simply nitpicking at certain aspects of some churches (especially in his critique of emerging missional churches), but I found Crabb was quick to admit his perceived pettiness outright and give some straight answers.

Real Church is a relatively easy read with short chapters that bring you along Crabb’s thought processes in an easy to digest progression. Whether you agree with Crabb or not by the time you finish the book, you cannot deny the legitimacy of Crabb’s journey. I highly recommend this book, if not just to gain a better understanding of why previously committed church attenders are more and more tiring of “going to church.”


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