Monday, July 27, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: "Breaking the Cycle of Offense" by Larry Ollison

Breaking the 
Cycle of Offense
- Larry Ollison -
Harrison House Publishers

Brick Heck is a lovable 10-year-
old nerd, seen weekly on the
wildly popular network sitcom,
the middle. One of Brick's
quirkiest qualities is that he
always has his nose buried in a
book — completely oblivious to
his surroundings. Oddly, when
it comes to consuming books by
Larry Ollison, I'm the same way.

Ever-engaging, Dr. Larry Ollison cuts to the chase in short order unpacking his message in his typical no-nonsense, conversational style.

"No matter where you go in life, you can meet someone who is upset and offended," Ollison writes in the opening to one of his most relevant faith-based life guides, Breaking the Cycle of Offense. "A simple decision to let go (of offense) brings life," he continues. "Anyone willing to make the decision to release offense can live in complete freedom." Hmm, and so it begins...

"Although you cannot stop people
from being offensive, you can
prevent them from offending you."
-Larry Ollison

Ollison's primary message is clear, compelling and broken down simply — grasping "offense" can kill. We need only to release it, or better yet, never take hold of it. Offering unique analogies, he compares the grip with which we hold on to offense to being like a monkey, trapped by hunters in the jungle while clinging to a "bait stick." No matter what, even to its death, the monkey simply won't release the bait.

Once again, Ollison stands on oodles of Scriptures to not only make his points regarding offense, but to also offer heartfelt encouragement regarding — forgiveness. You can do it, through Christ!

"When Jesus hung on the cross, He made
a most amazing statement regarding
forgiveness, He said, 'Father, forgive
them, for they do not know what they
do.' If Jesus didn't hold anything against
the people who were responsible for
His death, certainly you can release
those who have offended you. Make
the decision to release hurt today.
Make today the day you get set free."
-Larry Ollison

I've had coffee with Larry Ollison
nearly every morning for a year!
This is the fourth book from Ollison that I've devoured in just the last year — usually during my daily, early morning Starbucks devotions time. And although I'm impressed constantly by his seemingly limitless Bible knowledge, I'm more impressed by the wisdom he possesses in not "preaching" and not talking down to, or over his readers. Heck, any author / pastor who can effectively point to dirty socks and having a beer as a means of conveying his message is MY kind of author / pastor.

"One reason the things of God are
misunderstood is because religious
people have complicated the Word
of God, making it difficult to follow."
-Larry Ollison

Larry Ollison continues to speak to me — from the heart and from the Word of God. He truly is that laid back guy wearing the Hawaiian shirt, sitting at the end of the bar who you look forward to having coffee with every morning. And for me, his books (this one in particular) make for very unique and personal "small group" experiences.

-Christopher Long 
(July 2015)

Larry Ollison:
Breaking the
Cycle of Offense
Get it HERE



C'MON! -

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