Item description for My Beautiful Idol by Pete Gall...
Overview Idols are good for two things: making us feel important and making us feel loved. But the idols keep crashing?even when the author turns to his own Christian faith to construct an identity that will give him the life he craves. Through a variety of experiences?sublime and wretched, ego-building and humbling, joyous and painful?he learns the difference between pursuing ?holy hero status? and discovering the unpredictable and uncontrollable love of God.
Publishers Description The author of My Beautiful Idol is on a quest to be successful---in a lucrative job at an advertising agency, in ministry work, even in his relationships. And in a futile attempt to control the sources of love and security, he has turned these things into idols he can keep in his soul's back pocket. He pulls the idols out when he feels vulnerable and defenseless, and hides them again when things are going well. But the idols keep failing---even when he turns to his own Christian faith. In a creative narrative style rooted in raw honesty, My Beautiful Idol invites readers to identify with the young would-be Christian hero as he seeks God, and as he hides from God. Far from reducing complex matters to simplistic formulas, Pete Gall weaves together stories both sublime and wretched, ego-building and humbling, humorous and painful, and successfully celebrates the messiness of faith, the importance of validating truth, and the unscripted nature of experiencing a God who is intimately involved in all of life.
From Publishers Weekly At age 23 Gall walked away from a lucrative advertising job, determined to uphold his ethical standards while revolutionizing the world and the church. Five years later, after dropping out of seminary and quitting jobs with a rehab program, a community center, a home for developmentally disabled men, Bud's Warehouse and a plumbing distributor, he returned to his Midwestern family, musing, "What do you call someone who leaves the ordinary world on a hero's journey, but fails?" Like Rob Bell (Velvet Elvis) and Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz), Gall is edgy the evangelical way: he keeps sex and swearing mostly offstage, but, like other good guys, drinks, doubts and unleashes scathing sarcasm at the conservative Christian subculture.Now in his mid-30s, Gall mocks his younger self throughout: a "fat blond guy" with "no car, no cash, no direction, no prospects, no discipline." Relentlessly ironic, he may invite misunderstanding: do his harsh criticisms reflect his present view of evangelical reality, or are they meant to show his postadolescent pomposity?Nevertheless, his themes are clear: God doesn't need an image consultant; it is better to be authentic than great; and to achieve authenticity we must forsake "our deepest sin and our love for our most beautiful idol: to be our own god." (May) - Copyright 1997-2005 Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Citations And Professional Reviews My Beautiful Idol by Pete Gall has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Publishers Weekly - 03/10/2008 page 77
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Pete Gall is an author, speaker, freelance copywriter, brand strategist, and passion-driven gadfly whose clients range from Fortune 50 corporations to national denominations, tech start-ups, nonprofit organizations, and local churches. Pete and his amazing wife, Christine, live in Indianapolis with their two dogs.
Reviews - What do customers think about My Beautiful Idol?
A Open, Honest Journey of Man Searching For God May 3, 2010
Pete Gall is an excellent author who allows us to view his journey of finding God and learning how to live for God. He gives us a honest look into some of his most personal moments in his life to help readers handle their own realities and struggles. Whether you are looking for a great book for your next small group or a wonderful novel to read for yourself only, My Beautiful Idol is worth every penny and every second of your time. I promise you will not be able to put this book down, as you find yourself learning who you are and how important you are in God's eyes.
absolutely life-changing. Apr 6, 2010
The most wonderful, eye-opening book I've ever read. Pete is raw, honest, and true all the way through. Ten stars. :)
Honest but lacking Mar 9, 2010
I appreciate the level of honesty the author reflects in this book. It is very confessional and has a certain irreverance that can be endearing. I found myself identifying with several things the author shared in his own journey. The real issue with the book in my opinion is its choppiness. Transitioning from one chapter to the next, it can read like a fast clip tv show making it difficult to follow the author's train of thought or to maintain a consistent overall picture of the narrative. It reads more like a diary of one man's five year period through ministry attempts and life challenges. Its not that there is something wrong with that, it just leaves something to be desired by way of expectations for the progression of the story. It just kind of ends and some wise things were learned but I wonder if it had to take three hundred pages to get there.
Struggling with mixed motives Dec 5, 2009
When I do something good, am I doing it for pure motives, or am I doing it to impress others or attempt to "earn favour" with God? That is the type of question which Pete Gall keeps asking himself in this autobiographical book. The book tells the story of how Gall left his job with an advertising agency and subsequently worked with a rehabilitation agency, a community centre, a home for developmentally disabled men, and a business which employed ex-convicts.
In reading the book, it is hard to avoid alternating between on the one hand admiration for the author's raw honesty and the level of scrutiny to which he subjects his own motives, and on the other hand distaste for the way in which the author descends into a paralysis of cynicism and self-doubt. The "idol" from which the author is constantly fleeing is the idolatry of setting himself up in God's place.
The writing style is reminiscent of Donald Miller. The book is engaging and well written, although sometimes the author provides too much cringe-inducing detail for my liking. It will be helpful in encouraging readers to spend greater efforts questioning their own motives so that they can discover a greater level of humility, in a world in which the most superficial explanation is often accepted without question.
Blunt, But Vastly Overwritten Nov 13, 2009
It's commendable that Gall writes in such an authentic confessional style. Too many Christian books lack this type of reality. Unfortunately, this just is not a well-written book. Gall needed a much more aggressive editor. I wanted to like this book, as I am a big fan of Don Miller and heard about this book through the Internet Monk. This read like a serious of unfocused epiphanies without clarity, context, or memorable characters.