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Wild At Heart 20th May, 2009

Posted by Scotty in Books.

wild_at_heartSo, this semester Joe and I following on what has become our usually pattern decided to read through a book together.  To save some money we decided to find a book that we both had on our bookshelf which we hadn’t read yet, and ended up decided on Wild At Heart by John Eldredge.

It only took me a chapter or two to develop some skepticism about the book.  I wasn’t too impressed early on with the way Eldredge handles the Scripture quotations he has in the book.  Although I enjoy the content of the book and value the validity of what he discusses, he often reads his theory into the Scripture passages rather than allowing the passage to speak for itself.  This is my main criticism of his book… and now that I have that out the way, I can focus on what I did like about the book.

This book does a good job of tugging at the heart strings of men.  His simple axiom that every man needs “a Battle to Fight, and a Beauty to Rescue, and an Adventure to Live ” reveals the success of every story we read and movie we watch.  These elements they tug at the core of who we are as men.

I think where he really hits the nail on the head is his description of the wound that men receive at the hands of their fathers.  The world is currently filled with so much brokenness and dysfunction in families.  Across the board we are hearing of the implications of what has been called the “fatherless generation”.  So many men live lies that try to fill the gap left by and absent father (whether absent physically, emotionally, or spiritually).  I too have been deeply affected by this wound and only in recent years have I realized it and seen healing.

Since giving myself wholly to God I have been living the most incredible adventure, travelling around the world in pursuit of him.  I stand on the front lines of a spiritual battle that has been raging since Creation, fighting against the forces of darkness.  And, to my great delight, I have found my beauty and am in the process of rescuing her and inviting her to join me on this adventure.

I can’t wait to see what is around the corner.



1. Tyler - 22nd May, 2009

This book is definitely a classic even though it hasn’t been around too long. I love how John develops what makes a man tic.

2. Andrew - 21st September, 2009

Two comments about the “beauty to rescue.”
1. In my opinion, Eldredge is unclear as to what we’re actually rescuing her from. If you picked up on that, please, enlighten me.
2. Eldredge posits this as a necessary aspect of true manhood. But what about single men? Am I somehow 2/3 of a man because I don’t have a “beauty” in my life? Were Joseph, Daniel, Elijah, John the Baptist, Jesus, and Paul all somehow not manly because they weren’t married?

3. Scotty - 1st October, 2009

Hey Andrew. I agree with your words. I have a deep sorrow at the way singleness is viewed in the world today, and how a book like this can easily overlook those people who are currently single, or feel called to a life of singleness. I think community/fellowship is the 3rd of the elements… we all need community, not necessarily to be in a relationship with a woman.

In answer to your other point, I agree that he is vague on that. My understanding of what Eldridge is saying is that it is our job to rescue women from themselves! He talks about them being freed from what he calls “Eve’s Wound”, the false beliefs about themselves, the lies regarding personal identity that a woman feels. By pursuing them the way God intended, we rescue them from those lies.

The same issue arises here though, that some women are called to a life of singleness and so don’t need “rescuing”. To not be rescued would make them 2/3 of a woman.

Ultimately Christ is the rescuer. Both men and women are the ones needing rescued.

You bring up good points…

4. exxie - 17th December, 2009

I’m not finished reading the book, but my thoughts is that if you are called to a life of being single, then maybe God already filled that “need” you have of being rescued (as a woman) or pursue and rescue (men).
This book aims towards the way most people live, or want to live, with a companion through life.
But maybe John should have mentioned that in the book.
That he doesn’t write to those who have chosen a life of being single.

I don’t agree with John in everything, but the main idea and especially the part about the wound I can relate to. (To the men around me).
Even as a women it’s helpful to read a book like this, it helps to understand some things about men.

Good review Scotty!

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