Mark Buchanan believes we often miss the obvious teaching in Scripture because we are expecting something complicated or obscure whereas the path to a more fruitful satisfying Christian life is not hidden but obvious hence the title of his latest book: Hidden in plain sight : the secret of more (Thomas Nelson, 2007). Buchanan writes mostly about Peter using many incidents from the three years he spent with Jesus, along with the instructions in Peter’s letters. In particular he devotes a chapter to each of the seven virtues that Peter records in 2 Peter 1:5-7. These are goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and love. He expands on their meaning and includes other Scriptures to reinforce the teaching in these verses.

In the first few verses of Peter’s second letter he tells his readers we have “everything we need for life” therefore we ought to “make every effort to add to your faith” which may sound like a contradiction. However Buchanan explains it is like being given everything you need to build a house, that is all the materials and equipment, but you need to make an effort to actually build the house. Likewise God has given us everything we need but we are also required to make an effort.

I have enjoyed all of Buchanan’s books and this is no exception. He brings fresh insights and great stories to his writings.