One of the best ways I’ve found to learn about Christ is by reading about the lives of others. The biographies of great Christian men and women can sometimes speak more to our lives than any other books. Reading of the faith of men and women who lived before our time, or even our contemporaries, can convey spiritual truths that are hard to gain from almost any other source.
So when I received a copy of the Bitesize Biographies book on John Newton, I was pretty excited to delve into it. Of course, I had heard of Newton, who wrote the hymn Amazing Grace and many others, but I didn’t know much about his life and faith.
What I read was simply incredible. Newton was very rebellious as a young man, leading a life of such sin that he wondered how God’s grace could ever cover his failures. Participating in the slave trade in the mid 1700s, Newton flirted with death several times, only to be saved time after time. God had a plan for his life.
After a major storm convinced him that his life was completely out of step with God, he made a complete turnaround, ending up an ordained minister of one of the most influential churches in England.
His letters and hymns have touch lives for generations, bringing hope and encouragement that God can and will use anyone who opens their lives to his leadership.
This is a very short biography, and is quick and easy to read. But even though it covers many of the important events in Newton’s life, the author, John Crotts, still finds the room to insert chapters dedicated to some of Newton’s most famous hymns, and several key passages from his many letters.
I gained a much greater perspective on both Newton’s life and ministry as well as God’s amazing grace from this bite size biographical sketch. Newton’s life, and what God did though him, brings an inspiring message that many of today need to hear, even more than two hundred and fifty years later.
I’ll be watching for the opportunity to read more Bitesize Biographies.
Do you read biographies? If so, what life or lives have you enjoyed reading about most? You can leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
Disclosure of Material Connection:
I received this book free from Cross Focused Media as part of their Cross Focused Reviews blogger review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Also, some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links”. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. 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.“