The Good and Beautiful Life: Putting on the Character of Christ by James Bryan Smith

Review by Keith Robinson, July 2020

This is the second book in the series of three, and explores putting on the character of Christ. How could we (should we?) be living life in modern time to imitate Christ? James explores hospitality, play, connection with God, Sabbath, media (and the need to fast from it), silence, service, de-accumulation, prayer, temptation of gossip, day by day living. The reflections are based on Colossians 3:1-10. 

The book is written to appeal to evangelical Christians who may have no experience of spiritual discipline or reflective practices, and as such, James avoids a lot of the jargon that is inevitable with any particular branch of Christianity. I have done the study three times in three different groups and each time it has challenged my spiritual walk with the Lord.

At one point we stopped leading a church housegroup after three years, and asked each person to bring some reflection of the past three years in the group to share at the final meeting. Each person came back to how they had been challenged to the “Good and Beautiful” series. Each person had found some of the soul exercises easy and some a real challenge, and it was in the exercises that they had grown.  

Buy it here on amazon