Book Review | Rethinking Sexuality, God’s Design and Why it Matters by Juli Slattery

rethinking sexuality

Book Description:

Sexual abuse, sex addiction, gender confusion, brokenness, and shame plague today’s world, and people are seeking clarity and hope. By contesting long-held cultural paradigms, this book equips you to see how sexuality is rooted in the broader context of God’s heart and His work for us on earth. It provides a framework from which to understand the big picture of sexual challenges and wholeness, and helps you recognize that every sexual question is ultimately a spiritual one. It shifts the paradigm from combating sexual problems to confidently proclaiming and modeling the road to sacred sexuality.
Instead of arguing with the world about what’s right and wrong about sexual choices, this practical resource equips you to share the love and grace of Jesus as you encounter the pain of sexual brokenness–your own or someone else’s.

I loved this book. Not only do I know Juli Slattery from Authentic Intimacy (, but I’ve heard her countless times on Christian radio.  She is a professional who speaks truth. And sex needs to be talked about.

This timely book starts out strong, “Although sexuality presents an enormous challenge to Christians and the world at large, it is not a problem to be solved but a territory to be reclaimed.” Bold, yet truthful! She provides stats and research regarding the epidemic of discounting the importance of sexual purity, but also recounts the harmful effects of sex outside of the God-given boundaries.

She is also clear to point out, “The world is watching and laughing at Christians who worship the same God and read the same Bible can’t agree on God’s intention for sexuality. We can’t guide others if we ourselves are lost.” Amid the confusion of today, she’s got some answers, with glaring totality. The world can provide sexual answers, or we can go back to God, the originator of the Design and seek His will above the noise.

As the world pushes more toward postmodernism and humanism, we are sucked into the mindset that there are no standards of right and wrong, no moral compass.  But is this actually true?  When did what God said about the beauty and gift of sexuality become something we had the ability to define? “The transgender movement is the ultimate expression of postmodern thought, denying even the biological constraints of male and female. Gender becomes something we create in our own thoughts instead of a physical reality to which we must adjust our thinking.” There has to be a movement back to the basics, back to reality where we let God speak about what He’s created, instead of letting our sinful nature draw us away from the One who designed us intimately.

So why does purity matter?  Why should sex be confined to the marital bed and not out in the streets where lust takes control of us? Why does this all matter?  Because we can teach the next generation about the discipleship of sexuality.  “…if the church were using a discipleship model to teach about sexuality, these young people would understand the underlying spiritual importance and implications of their sexuality…they would also know how to apply the broader message of the gospel (Jesus’s love and redemption, the power of the Holy Spirit’s indwelling) to their lives in all circumstances.”

It’s that important.  I applaud Dr. Slattery for being bold enough to speak out about the dangers of misusing our sexuality, mislabeling and giving into sin, instead of seeking the One who gave us the gift of gender and sexuality.  We all need the Living Water.

Check out the website above. She has provided many resources for education, and check out the podcast “Java with Juli” for more of her content.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NetGalley and Waterbrook & Multnomah.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions expressed are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 ( “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Book Review | Scary Close: Dropping the Act and Finding True Intimacy by Donald Miller

scary close coverDonald Miller is on a search again for deepening human value and connection.  In his newest read, he readily admitted he had issues within himself that were preventing him from connecting with others in a beneficial way.  This book expounds on the journey he took to answer some deep questions about his struggle, and how he came to process his need to just live instead of pleasing everyone.  Through counseling with trusted friends, observing interactions between other friends and their home lives, and a program through Onsite (, he was able to identify some clear reasons with his inability to connect.

One thing he said that really hit me, was “Grace only sticks to our imperfections. Those who can’t accept their imperfections can’t accept grace either.”  To me, it was pretty clear-cut and profound, but I’m not sure even Donald realized how close to his sharing of the gospel he came!  Donald made a remark that should simply point us to the cross, and then to the saving grace of Jesus and why we extend that same grace to others.

Prior to this revelation, he was unable to receive love from his new fiance, Betsy, and his rejection of her attempts was proof of him wearing a mask that was shown for the purpose of keeping his true self safe.  He couldn’t be vulnerable.  I can’t say why, as that would be a breach of your reason to read the book.  But what I can say is that there is a part of us all that can identify with wearing masks to stay safe in front of people we think have expectations for us.  And instead of outward approval, we just need grace.

This book reads as a philosophical memoir, as Donald shares personal conversations, interactions and revelations.  He admits to some insights coming from his faith and the Bible, but predominantly he comes to conclusions based on books he’s read that describe theories from other men in the same emotional mature state.

It left me wanting to sit down with Donald myself.  I would love to share that while I appreciated his growth stages, and I loved that he was finally able to take off the mask to be exposed for the man he really is, I want to share with him who Jesus really is.  It seems like some of the roadblocks he was encountering could simply be changed by deepening his reading of the Word, and trusting in God instead of feeling like he has to have a plan for everything.  Then again, maybe Donald hasn’t had his light bulb a-ha moment yet.  Maybe he’s wading into the water with this book, which ends on his wedding day, and now, God will be tugging on his heart as he seeks to serve his wife in a godly manner.  Maybe Donald will begin to seek God differently and realize that worldly wisdom, though helpful at times, will always leave us wanting something even deeper than counseling sessions and ninety-day business plans.  Overall, I appreciate his honesty, simple insights, basic truths and his ability to be transparent in his journey.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers ( book review bloggers program.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions expressed are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 ( “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”