If you’ve been paying attention to anything at all lately, you’ve already heard about Pastrix, written by my friend Nadia Bolz-Weber, which has skyrocketed to the New York Times bestseller list and currently ranks as the top book in addiction recovery, the 5th book in religious memoirs, and the 8th in Christian living, which is to say: AWESOME. Nadia is the founding pastor of House for All Sinners and Saints in Denver. She is also an unbelievably gifted writer, which you may know if you’ve read her sermons on her blog, but which are on even sharper display here in the book. Look- I love books. You know this. I fawn over well-written words. And I just can’t tell you how beautifully written this is: it’s SO LOVELY. Funny, and authentic, and deeply true in that part of your gut that most needs and craves the deeply true. It was an absolute delight to read.

What you may not know about Nadia is that she can bench press me. We haven’t tried this yet but it is theoretically true because I know how much she can bench and it is the weight of an entire human being of my size, for the love of all things. In retrospect, we should have done this in addition to her ham raffle when she was in Dallas for her book tour last week. (Why didn’t I think of this earlier???) So yes, she is very tall, and she can lift heavy things, and she used to be a stand up comic, and she is a gifted writer and she preaches like a boss, and she cusses like a sailor, and I don’t know how anyone couldn’t like Nadia. You can disagree with her if you want, but I dare you not to like her.

What you may also find amusing and unexpected is that she is far more conservative than I am in many respects, particularly on matters of ecclesiology. (Such a Lutheran! ;) ) But I will give her this: she knows her Luther, and she will do a very good job of convincing you that you should, too. She’s a Lutheran evangelist is what she is. Many places in the book soar with the lovely truth that Luther wanted all of us to know: that God loves us, unconditionally, despite the fact that we are a mess, and that being a Christian means accepting that grace and realizing it’s there all the time, just waiting.

So go get the book, and be ready to laugh and cry and smile and feel that life is beautiful, because that’s what good books do. They remind us that life is beautiful. This one reminds us that God is beautiful, too, and how I wish the world would be flooded with books like that.

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