The thing is, Kent actually has been bitten by a camel. It’s not a metaphor. Even though it is. And that’s the brilliance of this book: Kent has done the hard work of becoming a particular kind of person-honest, open, following the questions wherever they lead. This book comes out of that pursuit-out of kind of life-and it’s really, really inspiring. Kent has been this kind of friend-and teacher-to me for almost 20 and I’m thrilled that’s captured so much of who he is and where he’s been in this book. And you don’t even have to be bitten by a camel.
This is a beautiful, honest, wise and liberating book that reflects the soul of its author. Anyone would enjoy Bitten by a Camel for its pitch-perfect prose and humane honesty, but people from the Evangelical background Kent and I share will find it more than enjoyable. For them, it will feel like a lifeboat after a shipwreck, a cure for a chronic disease, or a path through a forest where you’ve been lost for a long time.
Brian D. McLaren
Like all the best spiritual memoirs, this book is more about mystery than certainty, more about unknowing than driving stakes into the ground. If you’re in the aching, foggy middle of a spiritual transformation, I think this beautiful book might be good company along the way. I appreciate my friend Kent’s wisdom, bravery and honesty in the pages, and I believe you will, too.
If the term “religious experience” is to mean anything at all, it must refer, not to an experience of something, but to an event that transforms how we experience everything. With a subtle blend of honesty, humor and personal insight, Kent Dobson has crafted a work that invites the reader into such an experience. He has wrought lessons from his own life and presented them in a way that will help the reader encounter a new depth and density to life. Revealing a hope and joy that is anything but shallow or one-dimensional.
Bitten by a Camel is an honest, thoughtful, unfiltered look at one man’s very human pilgrimage up the mountain of faith, as he encounters doubt, failure and a host of unmet expectations. It’s just as likely to offend you as it is to heal you. I suppose which perspective you take will depend on how much of the mountain you have tumbled down yourself. I found myself laughing aloud at times and tearing up at others as Kent gave words to my own fantastic ride down the “slippery slope”. For those who are tired of hearing how beautiful the emperor’s new clothes are, Kent’s confessional storytelling will leave you feeling less alone, partially sane, and more hopeful for what lies ahead.
The NIV First Century Study Bible is a labor of love. For four years, I had the good fortune of working with a team to produce a unique study Bible. It combines cultural background data, rabbinic interpretations, word studies and occasional insights from the church fathers. The notes and articles invite the reader into a conversation. My hope is that you will hear some new voices around the table of Biblical interpretation and be inspired to read with new eyes the ancient stories in all their richness.