I have to admit, biographies are pretty hit or miss with me. Sometimes I love them and sometimes I wish I loved them.
My sister and I always read a book together. It’s our way of ensuring that we’re both still learning and growing. As we’re both voracious readers, it’s a really intentional way for us to connect with each other. The last book we read together was Bonhoeffer’s biography by Eric Metaxas. It was substantial in every way I can possibly think of: in size, history, story, and meaningfulness.
A few sentences wouldn’t begin to sum up 544 pages of this biography. It read like a really good novel, keeping my attention the whole time. When I ordered the brick of a book, I wondered how I’d stay engaged enough to finish, but I couldn’t put it down. I learned not just about Bonhoeffer, but about Germany, Hitler and World War II. It made me take an honest look at my theology and faith in a radical way that only one who has died for their faith and belief could cause me to do. Metaxas does a masterful job of weaving Bonhoeffer’s personal story and theology with the political history of Germany.
Bonhoeffer had an unwavering dedication to his belief system, and what he knew to be right. He wasn’t swayed by family, friends, or government. He held to what he viewed as being true, and although the payoff at the time seemed to be more costly than rewarding, for years after, he’s remembered for his courage, commitment, and pursuit of truth and freedom.
I definitely recommend this book if you have any interest in World War II history, if you’re in a position of having obstacles in your way threatening to keep you from what you know to be right, or if you love getting wrapped up in good story telling. You won’t be sorry you read it.
Have you read it? What did you think?
Are there other biographies you would recommend?
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