You probably wouldn’t recognize him if you saw him on the street, nor would you likely even know his name if it came up in conversation, but you may have heard of his book, The Shack. William Paul Young shared the story behind the story of The Shack.
Hearing him speak helped me realize something more though. His intentions for writing the book were not to build a theology, rewrite biblical orthodoxy or challenge the status quo. He wrote The Shack out of his own experiences and for his own family (which includes 6 kids, 2 in-laws and 2 grandkids). He self-published it, spent less than $500 in ‘promotion and marketing’ (on a website) and the book has since become a New York Times Bestseller for the last 20+ weeks. I’m prone to believe him when he calls the whole experience a “God thing.”
He didn’t say anything too intense or weird, but just spoke from his heart about his relationship with Papa, and how we all have a “shack” that we hide things in – the very painful things that will only be overcome when they’re dealt with directly. When we wonder “where was God when this or that happened” we can know that He was there experiencing it with us. He hasn’t abandoned us but has embraced us – and often times we don’t even know it.
If you haven’t read the book, I encourage you to pick up a copy. It’s fiction so don’t read too much into it (as some have) but allow yourself to think differently about how God loves us and how He expresses that love.