David Powlinson is a teacher, a counselor and the executive director of the Christian Counseling and Educational Foundation. Gary Shultz has reviewed Good & Angry also by David Powlinson. He has become one of the more authoritative voices in the Christian Counseling discipline.
At only 108 pages of text divided over 9 chapters, Powlinson offers an excellent introduction to the healing process for those who have sinned sexually. He first orients the reader to the biblical view of sex before showing how the renewal process is personal. This personal renewal is the core of the book as the next six chapters deal explicitly with renewal.
Chapter three, on of the longest chapters in the book offers a discussion on renewing all things that darkens sex. Chapters four through six explain that renewal is a lifelong, wider and deeper battle than we ever imagined. Chapter seven is the longest chapter appropriately as it explains how sexual renewal for the sexually broken will be an increasingly subtle struggle.
Chapter eight and nine help you to remember the goal of renewal and engaging the daily skirmishes that weaken or strengthen you.
Sadly, most everyone today needs this book. Whether it is through our own sinfulness (how many of us have wrestled with pornography?!) or the sinfulness of others, I cannot think of a time when someone has not been affected by pornography or sexual sin.
As one who was saved later in life (age 23) and having served in the military, I was steeped in sexual sin. I have an entire book shelf of dealing with porn, lust, sexual immorality, and the like and still I struggle. Powlinson offers the greatest hope for those who are struggling. It is not his experience or his wisdom. Rather the hope he offers is in the Person of Jesus Christ. He makes it abundantly clear that this will be one of, if not the, hardest battles every believer will engage during their lifetime.
He makes it clear that you are not alone in your struggle but also that a support group really is limited in how it will help you. Sure, accountability is key, but the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit is more so. He never removes the responsibility from the self, but does explain how living in a fallen world will set us up for failure more than it will help us succeed. In other words, we must always be on our guard.
For me personally, the money quote came on page 68 when he writes, “[Jesus] has staked his glory on the completion of that work [sanctification].” Yes, we are responsible for our sinful actions and thoughts, but Jesus will complete the work He began in you and that is the gospel truth.
As one who has been defeated in the past by sexual sin, I understand how depressing and wounded one can become when wrestling against this terrible sin. David Powlinson has written a sweet healing balm rooted deeply in Scripture to encourage and equip the believer to engage the battle of an already defeated enemy. I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone wanting to better slay the dragon of sexual immorality.