When Sarah and I were out to lunch last Tuesday, I was telling her about several portions of the book Hear No Evil,* by Matthew Paul Turner, that I felt I related to. I talked a lot about how I felt in my youth group growing up, because I happened to enjoy music that didn’t put me to sleep, and how I hated feeling judged for that by many of my youth leaders. After talking back and forth for ten minutes about different chapters in the book, a lady apologized for eavesdropping and invited us to give her church a chance. I smiled and politely told her that I was actually a youth and children’s pastor. She seemed a little surprised, I guess. I thought, “Wow! Am I really that far gone? Have I changed that much from when I was a super religious Christian?” Then I thanked God that it seemed to be the case. We chatted a little bit about church, and then she went back to listening to my conversation with Sarah.
It had been a very long time since I’ve read a book in two days. Then I received Hear No Evil in the mail last Monday. Before I went to bed Tuesday, the roughly 230 pages in the book had been read. I read it in most of my free time, and when I wasn’t reading it, I was telling Sarah about what I had read and how much I identified with it. It is Matthew’s story of growing up in a strict Baptist environment, the musical boundaries that exist in such an environment, and his growing through those times, with the help of the Holy Spirit and music, into who he is now.
I really enjoyed the book. I really encourage anyone to read it. I have never enjoyed a non-fiction book so much. If you have come from a conservative religious background, and you now feel more free in Christ than ever before, I really encourage you to read it. If for nothing else, so that you can be reminded of where you came from. It is being released today. To order your copy, click the link at the top of this post. Tell them Jeff Selph sent you. It won’t do you any good, but it sounds cool to me.
* This book was provided for review by the WatterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group.