Learning to Soar by Avery and Matt Willis

December 29, 2009 | By | Add a Comment

Like an eagle that stirs up its nest,
That hovers over its young,
He spread His wings and caught them,
He carried them on His pinions.

Deuteronomy 32:11, NASB

Learning to Soar is based off of Deuteronomy 32:11 and has four parts. The first part is how God uses hardships to move a person to a place where he or she is willing to change and align with God’s purposes (God stirring the nest). Part two is about having patience in the presence of God while He works out His plan (God hovering over the nest). Part three is about putting faith in action (attempting to fly) and part four is about fulfilling your God-given potential (learning to soar).

This is a joint effort between a grandfather and twenty-something year old grandson. Most of the writing belong to the grandfather, with short anecdotes by the grandson interspersed every few pages. The authors have done a lot of work with missions and this clearly influences their writing.

This book has quite a buildup. First off, there are four pages of testimonials. After the dedication and table of contents, there is a foreword written by Rick Warren. Next, there is a preface written by Henry Blackaby. This is followed by a note from the authors, acknowledgments and an introduction. The thrust is about 120 pages. Discussion questions, notes and the appendix take up the final quarter of this 186 page book.

Positives: I learned a great deal about eagles and this book gave me a fresh appreciation and much deeper understanding of the above scripture from which this book is based. I also liked how the authors emphasized that it is okay to fail – so long as you are trying. Finally, the book is full of interesting stories, especially pertaining to missions.

Negatives: With all the internal hype, I was expecting more out of this book. Also, at times I felt like the authors reached to fit what they wanted to say with the eagle theme. The insertion of the grandson’s stories added to the discussion, but sometimes interrupted the flow.

Summary: With a heavy emphasis on questions for personal and group reflection, this book is best suited to be read and discussed as part of a small group. There is a guide with eight sessions at the back, so it would take about eight weeks to go through this book at the rate of one session per week.

Rating: 4/5 (Best for small groups.)

This book was provided for review by NavPress. To learn more or to purchase this book on Amazon, click here. For further information, check out the book’s website at learningtosoar.org.

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anais Nin

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