Humble Roots: Book Recommendation
Humility. Oh man, that is something I want in my life. I am often looking for books to help me meditate on this quality that characterizes Jesus. I also appreciate the writings of Hannah Anderson as someone who thinks well about women and their calling. Thus, it’s no surprise that her book from last year, Humble Roots, was pre-ordered in my name a long time ago.
It was worth to wait; you’ll want to grab a copy of this book.
Humility from All the Angles
The subtitle for Humble Roots is “How Humility Grows and Nourishes Your Soul.” It is a great meditation for your contemplative reading. I depend on books that help me think and rethink through topics like humility, especially when I realize what is at stake. We need humility to thrive.
Anderson puts it this way in her introduction, “the humility that brings us rest is the humility that frees us to be the people God created us to be.” (11) Throughout the book, she beautifully weaves the illustrations she sees in horticulture with the biblical truths our souls require to grasp humility. With Scripture supporting each meditation, she doesn’t pull her punches. Just as we need it, she’s willing to challenge our worldview to help us see our blindness.
The book reminds us that we are not responsible for our own existence, bringing Andrew Murray’s book on humility to mind even before she quotes him. In her book, Anderson warns us against playing God and calls us to submission to Jesus. It is only in humility that we can find the rest that God wants for us. It is there we can remember who we are. Though we are not Jesus, Jesus came to restore us to good humble humanity.
In further chapters, the depths of our need for humility unfold. Humility frees us from shame. It frees us from Messiah-complexes. Humility frees us from being ruled by our emotions. Humility frees us from needing to know it all. Humility is bringing hope as we realign our perspective of ourselves.
In classic Hannah Anderson fashion, she brings us back to our identity and calling. We need humility to remind us of our dependence and of our purpose, we see in the last section. “So instead of asking ‘Do I deserve this gift?’ humility teaches us to ask, ‘What has God given and what responsibility do I have because of it?’ And by doing so, humility changes the frame of reference entirely. Suddenly, we are no longer at the center; God is. Suddenly our sense of entitlement or guilt no longer drives our choices. Suddenly everything is a gift and everything has a purpose.” (153) Humility helps us see rightly.
Don’t Write It Off
This isn’t a book for women. This isn’t a book for the extra-spiritual. This isn’t a book for those who read “theology.” This is a book for followers of Jesus. It’s for all of us to examine what we believe and what we are called to, with helpful analogies and vulnerable insight from another follower of Jesus.
Although I read this book months ago, I have returned to it several times. It is the kind of writing that stirs my heart to embrace the gospel truth and points me to the beauty of humility each time. Then it digs into my will as I consider how to apply this to the practical life in my day.
Side note: If you ever get headaches from the chemical smell of some newly printed books, as I do, Moody Publishers books (like this one) are ones you’ll want to buy on Kindle. These books don’t seem to air out quickly.