Hello Mr. Anderson (a book review)

Rough Road to Freedom: A Memoir by Neil T. Anderson

I like to read lots of kinds of books, but I think one of my favorite genres is memoir. I love to read people’s’ stories and hear the types of things that shaped them socially, intellectually and emotionally. In Christian memoirs, you also get to hear about conversion and call,  the types of things that shaped a person’s convictions, and struggles along the way. Rough Road to Freedom is the story of Neil T. Anderson, best known in the Evangelical world for writing Victory Over the Darkness and The Bondage Breaker. Freedom in Christ Ministries, the ministry Anderson founded has helped people experience victory over demonic oppression and brought healing to their lives.

Anderson grew up on a farm and went on to serve in the US Navy and became an aeronautical engineer before feeling called to the ministry. He was a pastor and seminary professor (Talbot) before starting Freedom in Christ Ministries.  Along the way, Anderson shares how his theology of God’s kingdom (and that other kingdom) develops,  and  his experience in helping people confront the power of darkness in their lives.

I enjoyed this book. Anderson is a person of  integrity who has had his own struggles with bitterness and un-love, darkness and feelings of spiritual dryness,  difficult circumstances  and he has had to deal with his fair share of opposition.  I enjoyed reading how his theology developed and of the many people he has been able to walk alongside and helped experience Christ’s freedom. I appreciated his graciousness with his opponents.

I do not necessarily agree with Anderson’s theology on every point, but I like his story.  It also helps me contextualize some of his theological commitments. If you like Christian memoirs or are just interested in knowing more about this influential figure, this is a good book for you.  Because Anderson focuses on his theological development and ministry experience, some may find this book a little less story oriented and ‘preachier’ than your typical memoir. I think that is a fair critique,  but I liked it anyway (4 stars).

Thank you to Kregel Publications for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for this review.

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