L is for Lifestyle (Revised and Updated): Christian living that does not cost the earth – Ruth Valerio
IVP /186 pp /£8.99 / ISBN 978 1844743438
I remember writing a review for this book when it first came out 15 years ago, writes John Woods.
This is a substantial revision and update; when the original came out there were very few Christian voices talking about the issues raised by this book.
L is for Lifestyle is quite literally an A-Z of lifestyle. The articles deal with a variety of issues facing contemporary Christians in everyday life, and the book is like an ethical spring clean; it urges us to poke into the corners of our lives and clean out the junk. All too easily we can drift through life without really thinking about the implications of our choices and actions.
Author Ruth Valerio places our attitudes and actions under the microscope for some close scrutiny. She covers everything from the ecology of driving to the ethical implications of shopping, investments and tourism. Each section concludes with a useful set of action points, further reading, and the names of relevant organisations.
To me, Ruth still appears a little too earnest at times, but she does manage to navigate some tricky ethical waterways without sounding zany or descending into the widely impractical. On the contrary, this book contains some sane advice, based on biblical principles, about how the reader could make a practical difference in life.
It is good for us to be made to think about our lifestyles; this may help us be a little more careful about our choices. Every little bit helps!
John Woods is pastor of Lancing Tabernacle in West Sussex