Book Review: Saturate by Jeff Vanderstelt
“What does it look like to live for Jesus in the everyday stuff of life?”
This quote, from the jacket of Saturate by Jeff Vanderstelt aptly summarizes the book. In this quick read, Vanderstelt talks about his experience leading a church to live missionally. He shares the personal stories of the people in his missional community and the ways in which they engaged their friends and community in tangible ways.
I enjoyed this book for several reasons. First, it was really easy to read. Vanderstelt doesn’t complicate his message. This book is simply him telling stories of real people living life together. Through the course of the book, the reader learns about several individuals who begin as skeptics and ultimately sign up for the idea of missional living. I appreciated that Vanderstelt talked about this process both for non-believers and for long-time believers who had never been exposed to the idea of living missionally, despite decades in the church. Second, Vanderstelt is very practical. He gives numerous doable examples of how to live missionally. The first time I was exposed to the term “missional community”, I didn’t really understand what it meant. Venderstelt’s account of his group makes it very clear what being a missional community is all about and his description is very accessible. As I read, I found myself thinking about several ways I could be more missional and how my own missional community could better work together in furthering the Gospel. Even better was that my ideas weren’t all that intimidating because as the quote above implies, Vanderstelt illustrates living for Jesus in the everyday stuff of life I would have been doing anyway. Finally, I liked that even though this book is really simple and straightforward, there was plenty of content to challenge people regardless of where they are in their walk with Christ. There was something for everyone to learn and grow from in this book, so groups including everyone from seasoned Christians to people only beginning to consider the faith could read this together and have good discussion.
All in all, this is a great book for groups and individuals. It’s a quick read, so it shouldn’t be difficult to get the reading done for a group discussion. It’s an enjoyable read that paints a picture of real people figuring out how to live life together on mission, and it’s a convicting read that challenges individuals to more fully incorporate Jesus into every part of their lives.
Find discussion questions here.