Friday, November 18, 2011
Who Is McKenzie? by Peter Stanway
Reviewed by ~Mary
Not long ago, I made a conscious decision to wipe the invisible religious slate clean and start from scratch. As the daughter of a minister, I began questioning some of the doctrines associated with our church. I had religious answers burned into my mind, but I didn’t want that kind of experience. I was searching for an experience that was authentic and came from within. I didn’t want to act and react due to head knowledge, but out of a driving passion from my heart.
As a book reviewer and editor, I was privileged to have the best in written philosophies at my disposal. I became immersed and consumed with finding out who this mysterious Heavenly Father truly is. Interviewing a diverse group of individuals and hearing their personal stories for my radio broadcast has also helped to unwrap the great mystery. And, on occasion, my path would intersect with flesh and blood mirror images of who I longed to be-that individual who totally understood who God was apart from legislated rules.
Late one Sunday afternoon in Atlanta, Georgia at the World Congress Center, Peter Stanway and I crossed paths. Nothing about his appearance or our initial conversation screamed that our meeting was destiny, but it would prove to be. He beamed with a passion that was bigger than any room he stepped into. He has a palpable compassion for people that are lost in a maze of questions that never seem to get resolved. Although a gifted minister, I believe him to be a 21st century healer.
When Jesus performed miracles, opening deaf ears and blind eyes was only part of his ministry. There was always a deeper meaning of reconciliation with society and with God our Father at work. Peter’s ministry is much the same. He is driven to remove the errors in religious thinking and restore our relationship with God.
As you read of McKenzie’s adventures, don’t be surprised if some of his wonderings and emotional struggles look familiar. That is because McKenzie is each of us, wrapped in a different outer shell, but tormented by the same spiritual issues we all deal with. Without having to dress in your Sunday best, fight traffic, race for your favorite pew in your own synagogue, it is possible to hear the truth in a non-confrontational but personal way. It is conceivable to settle our own questions by voyeuristically shadowing McKenzie and learning as he learns. It is probable that you will wipe a tear or two from your cheek as the realization of the depth, yet simplicity of His love, finally comes to rest within you. There is no greater sermon or more profound message to be shared except that He is real and always obtainable. No religious doctrine necessary.
Several years ago, a military drama premiered on the silver screen in which one line has become notorious for making the movie. In the famous courtroom scene, a lawyer slams his fist on the table while yelling at the defendant, “I want the truth.” In much the same way, I see believers around the world slamming their spiritual fist on a table demanding to know the truth. I know because I was one of them. I grew up in church but failed to know, really know, God. It is my prayer that as you read Who Is McKenzie?, your eyes will be opened, the truth revealed, and for the impact of that truth to reach forward into generations to come. Whether you need to wipe your slate clean as I did, or to hear the message for the first time, I believe Peter will profoundly affect the way you view God. For those that want to know Him and bypass the doctrinal sludge that tends to weigh us down, McKenzie is perfect.
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