The Search for Reason by Michael E. Dreher


There are many things that are very good about this book. I think all Christians who have been believers for a while should read this book or at least one similar. We often take our faith for granted never doubting God's existence or His grace. But we do often doubt His mercy else why would we constantly beat our head against the walls for our past sins?

This is a refreshing walk down a path searching for faith in a very reasonable world. Everyone needs to remember what faith is all about, and to know that regardless of our beliefs God really does have our best interests at heart. He's real, and personal, and intimately involved in our lives. This book reminds us of those things, and that is a very good thing.

The beginning is done very well. We have a brief look at what Matthew's life is like; without graphics we get the picture. Then we slip into his thought processes as he muddles about trying to make sense of a gut wrenching blow to his equilibrium when his friend dies. Matt comes face to face with how God can change a person inside out. All this is written very well, and to the point. The character development is excellent, and he's fully believable as a 30-something.

The other characters are drawn with a deft pen as well... the bad influences are really bad, and the good ones are not preachy or prudes. They are just average Christians who have a noticeable heart for God, and are not ashamed of saying so. Michael makes good use of prayer as well.

There is a lot of background story that bogs down the story flow, though. The quest is all about Matthew, not the psychologist so we don't need to go down any side roads with him. That is very distracting and it does not move the story along. Although, the psychologist does help Matt to understand somethings, and Dreher uses that character to tackle some hard questions. The story would move along at a much better pace if all that back story was removed and used in a different book that tackled some of those things that long-time Christians face every day.

Another drawback is that the story is very wordy, and Dreher uses a lot of passive voice verbs instead of action verbs. In his next book, he needs to pay closer attention to verb tense as well. All that said, this is a good first endeavor for a new author. I look forward to more from him.

This book gets 3 stars out of 5. I liked it. If the writing were tightened up quite a bit, and some of the characters' back stories were trimmed, it could get 5 stars.


 Matthew Edwards thought he was living the dream. He was young, successful, and had his sights set on a bright future. Then, out of the blue he received a phone call that turned his world upside down. His childhood best-friend that he had not seen in 15 years, died suddenly, and the news rocked him to his core. After receiving the news, a series of “coincidences” had him searching for answers. Trying to deal with the death of a friend was hard enough, but then he found out that his job might be on the line, as well as the partnership he dreamed of. Nightmares of a faceless child haunted his sleep, and the peace he thought he had in his life had all but vanished. “How much could one person take,” he would wonder, as he tried to piece things together before his life fell apart.

After the funeral, the questions that plagued him left him restless and void. “What’s the reason to all of this? How could God allow this to happen? If he was a God of love, how come there is so much pain and suffering?” More and more, he tried to find the meaning in all of it. “I need to know,” he would think. So at the behest of his mother, he sought answers in a place that he never thought he would; a psychologist. While he found answers to some of his questions, he still felt as if he had a hole in his soul. Without knowing what to do next, or where to find the peace he so desperately needed, he took a step in the direction that he ran from many years before.

Will he be able to find the peace or reason he seeks?

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