By Vibha Sazawal
It’s important not to judge this book by its cover. With its title “Gospel Memories“, you might think this book is about quaint gospel sermons told to a child. There’s nothing quaint, though, about this book by Episcopal Bishop Jake Owensby. Bishop Owensby has lived a hard life. His mom survived the Nazi concentration camp Mauthausen. His father was abusive. He lived in a car for a while. He had a cleft palate and couldn’t speak well; this conditioned is treatable but he didn’t get it treated until he was an adult. Chapter 1 talks about how life isn’t fair. Bishop Owensby doesn’t think that his past shapes his future. Instead, he argues that his future is actually reshaping his past. This sounds crazy but give him some time to explain. Our future is defined by God’s grace, not our past. And God uses our life experiences to transform us into our new lives in Christ. We can use the Gospel as a guide to understand what’s happened to us and how it helps us achieve a new life in Jesus. In the book, Bishop Owensby explains how Bible verses can be used to interpret and understand his life. If you are experiencing painful life experiences, or you have experienced them in the past, perhaps the Gospel also includes stories that can help you understand and overcome them.