Concise and Relevant

Barbara Winters

4.5 Stars

February 14, 2012

Enemies of the Heart is a terrific book. Andy Stanley’s message is clear, concise and on-point for today’s society. New Christians, as well as seasoned, will learn something new by reading it.

Mr. Stanley believes there are “four primary enemies of the heart—four life-blocking agents that become lodged in the heart, poisoning our relationships, our faith, and our character.” (p. 47) These enemies are: guilt, anger, greed, and jealousy. Mr. Stanley explains that each of these forces is a result of believing there is a debt that needs paid. Which emotion surfaces depends on who we believe owes a debt and to whom the debt is owed. For example, “Guilt says, ‘I owe you.’ Guilt is the result of having done something we perceived as wrong.” (p. 53)

The author first explains each enemy of the heart and the debt associated with it. He delves into the root cause of the emotion so the reader can understand why he/she experiences it. Then the author helps the reader confront and defeat it.

I found the most eye-opening chapter to be “Confronting Jealousy.” Mr. Stanley describes jealousy as “God owes me.” He states, “. . . jealousy is just a manifestation of the fact that you aren’t getting what you want.” (p.172) Ouch. The solution to overcoming jealousy? In part, surprisingly, celebration. That’s right. Celebrate the success of others.

I highly recommend this book. I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.