Having read books on toxic faith in years past, I was excited to read this book. I was disappointed, however, that the title does not describe the contents of the book. This book is more about a physical body cleanse than it is about correcting toxic faith.
Smith says of her book, “This book is about assessing the current condition of your faith and being honest about it with yourself and God to ensure that your faith is in optimal health and ready to greet the greatness He has for you.” (14) That statement is a clue the book is more about believing with a view to receiving than it is about doctrine.
She writes, “...faith is the science of three components: spirit, mind and body.” (15) She argues that food and thoughts are connected. If what you eat affects what you think and if what you think affects your faith, “then it can be said that what you are eating is currently affecting your faith.” (35) “Detoxing and cleansing the stomach results in clearer thinking and sharper faith.” (36) The book is not so much about correct belief as it is a physical cleanse of the body.
Smith does address faith issues in each of the thirty day writings. These issues are usually ones of behavior or feelings, such as dealing with negative emotions from a church split, seeing Christian stars fall, being rejected by others, emotions after natural disasters, not tithing, not stepping out in faith, and getting rid of “stuff.” She also writes about dealing with toxic ideas coming in and recommends a media fast. She writes about breaking soul ties and about the spiritual toxin of not owning one's own home. Smith is full gospel and one of the toxins is unfulfilled (personal) prophecy.
I felt Smith did not really address many issues of fundamental toxic belief. She doesn't deal with harmful concepts such as thinking we must work for God's love and acceptance. I thought the most interesting section was about the misinterpretation of Paul's thorn in the flesh. “It is clear that the thorn in Paul's flesh was persecution.” (161) I wish there had more of this type of instruction about our faith in God, how we view Him, etc.
Early on Smith writes, “Because physical detoxification might be the most challenging component of our thirty days together...” (20) I think correcting toxic belief is many times harder than following prescribed smoothies or veggie and fruit mixtures.
If you are looking for a book truly on correcting toxic faith (in the sense of belief), this may not be the book for you. If you are looking for a book dealing with a body cleanse written in a Christian context and from a charismatic and full gospel viewpoint, this would be a good one.
My rating: 3/5 stars.
Laura Harris Smith is a certified nutritional counselor. She and her husband founded and pastor Eastgate Creative Christian Fellowship in Nashville, Tennessee. You can find out more at http://www.lauraharrissmith.com/home.html.
Chosen, 256 pages.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.