In Born to Be Born Again, husband and wife pastors John Thurston and Freddie Ruth Grier (aka, “Salt & Pepper”) explore spiritual patrimony, or what it means to be a true child of God. At the heart of this experience is conversion, a movement from what the authors call “sin nature” to a place of ultimate surrender to the will and desires of the Almighty. Although this idea is oft-repeated in many other titles, the authors’ bubbling personalities make this basic tenet seem fresh and vibrant.
John and Freddie focus much attention on the role of fatherlessness, not just the literal absence of a dad in the life of a child (an absence that can cause anger, fear and anxiety, and one the author himself experienced), but the understanding that no earthly father can take the place of one’s heavenly father. Earthly parents are important, they argue, but ultimately we must put God before all things. Other topics include living a life of faith not fear; how to embrace being a child of God; the benefits of confessing our sins and the power of baptism.
Impassioned in its message and loving in its approach Born to Be Born Again is simple to understand, and the personal stories interspersed throughout add a level of poignancy without ever becoming self-serving. These two have really struck a nice balance of knowing when to preach, when to advise, when to share, and when to stop and move on to the next topic.
Ultimately, Born to Be Born Again is about knowing what it means to be in an honest relationship with God. Though the prose could use some polishing and copyediting (e.g., “When a person becomes born again, they need to be instructed that they must begin to think differently by thinking the way Christ thinks”), the book itself is level-headed and Salt and Pepper’s insights offer hope for those desiring a closer relationship to their Father.
Also available in hardcover.