Every year, I try to make a list of books I want to get read while I am on vacation. The list borrows from several genres so I don’t get weary in reading from a single genre. My “counseling” read for this year’s vacation was Shame Interrupted, by Ed Welch. I buy every book Welch writes, so I have read him before and once again I was not disappointed.
Welch’s writing style reads like he is conversing with you. You feel as though you are having a conversation with him. His counseling experience is so vast, his case history so detailed that it’s like he knows what questions people would ask if they were present in person; and so he answers them. Yet, despite Welch’s connection to his audience, that was not what set this book apart for me.
The best part of Welch’s book (and the section of the book that is a must read) is Welch’s interactions with Leviticus and Numbers and the idea of clean/unclean and holy/unholy. I found his thinking here to be sharp and precise. He parses out distinctions in obscure texts that suggest he has spent much time in meditation on these truths. Welch’s desire to bring the Bible to bear on human problems means that he doesn’t make the Bible say what he wants it to say, but he reads the bible with an eye to how it might help someone caught by shame.
This book is a great read, I highly recommend it. It’s longer than other books I have read by Welch (it’s 325 pages), but honestly, you won’t notice. You will be taken in by the scriptural insights and the godly counsel in such a way that your own soul will be encouraged and refreshed.
Get this book, read, and then share it with others. You’ll be glad you did (and so will those you share it with).