I am not a huge fan of fiction writing, but I read this book about a year ago and truly enjoyed it. I took it with me on a trip for Rainbow Resource and found myself reading every chance I could. I had never read a book quite like this one.
"The Shack" is about one man's struggle with understanding his life and the role of God. As he wrestled with the questions, I found myself looking with a new perspective at some of the attributes of God. The main character, Mack, has suffered tragedy in the loss of his youngest daughter and can't seem to get out of the funk. One day he receives a strange message inviting him to 'the shack' the place his daughter was killed. The note was signed 'Papa,' his wife's pet name for God. Mack decides to go to 'the shack' just to see what kind of person would toy with another's emotions in such a way, only to meet and spend the weekend with the Holy Trinity.
It took me a bit to wrap my head around the characters as described in the book, because I had just never thought about them in the way described. How do I picture God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit? If I could give them character qualities, what would they be, and what would they be like? These questions have sparked some great conversation and further Bible study. It is important to remember that this book is fiction, and the author's goal wasn't to be 'theologically correct.' The author of this book, Wm. Paul Young, has had seminary training, but at this time in his life has no affiliation with organized religion. He wrote this book for his children to help explain some of the characteristics and mysteries of God.
'The Shack' describes the Trinity in human terms that might make God more reachable to some; and even if you don't agree with the theology of the book, it will cause you to think about what you do believe, and maybe think about God in a different way. ~ Donna