Book cover: The Heavens of Idolatry, Shedding the Gods of Perfectionism

The Heavens of Idolatry, Shedding the Gods of Perfectionism

by Lisa Stough


I'm sure I'm not the only one who thought being a perfectionist was a good thing. And it is, if you are talking about a person who is aiming for excellence. A mediocre concert pianist isn't likely to be placed on the theater bill. If we pay a house painter to paint our house, we want the paint to last a reasonable number of years and not be peeling off in a year.

The perfectionism the author, Lisa Stough, discusses in The Heavens of Idolatry has a totally different meaning. In the author's words, "I am approaching the subject from the viewpoint that perfectionism is the pursuit of one's own perfection and righteousness--perhaps having the same expectations of others—apart from Jesus Christ or even in relationship with Him. In any case, it is often due to a skewed understanding of God’s love, personality and omnipotence. Furthermore, perfectionism is the point at which a focus on performance consumes the person it plagues."

The author Lisa Stough has researched the topic thoroughly and does not rely simply on her own experience. She does include her own experience which brings a personal warmth and realism to it. She has an extensive bibliography so the reader can explore the topic further.

The book is short enough I was able to read it in a few hours, and she includes some exercises for the reader to do for self examination and self understanding. She includes many scripture references as well.

Perfectionism, as the author defines it, affects one's thinking in such a way as to discourage real spiritual growth and can in fact hinder that growth. This is a common problem which goes unrecognized and is often encouraged as a "false humility." Sometimes we can get so discouraged we quit. I loved her list of questions she wrote for her daughter to determine if she had done a good job. I plan to copy that list to read when I get discouraged.

The Heavens of Idolatry is available as hard copy, paperback or eBook.

Book Review
By Scarlett Stough

Title: The Heavens of Idolatry, Shedding the Gods of Perfectionism
Author: Lisa Stough Copyright 2015
Publisher: WestBow Press, a Division of Thomas Nelson & Zondervan
ISBN: 0-89109-940-9

Editor's note: Lisa Stough is the daughter-in-law of Scarlett Stough. The Heavens of Idolatry is Lisa’s second published book.

Volume 14 Issue 06 | Notes from Nancy | Women in Christ Commentary | Bible Study Guide | Abundance of the Heart | Exhortation | Book Review

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