Companion Book Briefs: Crazy Shepherd/Crazy Sheep, Beyond Belief, Graduation: ‘So What Just Happened?’

By Megan Herrold

CHICAGO, IL (September 19, 2014) — Book Briefs is an online feature of the Covenant Companionthat highlights new releases by Covenant authors. These reviews will supplement those provided in the magazine and are available on both Covenant Newswire and the Companion website. Both books reviewed below are available for purchase at

Crazy Shepherd / Crazy Sheep by Ronald C. Gelaude (CreateSpace)

Retired Covenant minister and church planter Ron Gelaude shares his spiritual travels in this presentation of life on the crazy side. He writes, “Jesus was considered crazy by many of the religious leaders gathered around him….So if the shepherd is considered stark, raving mad, what does that say about the sheep that follow him?” In fact, Gelaude writes, they come up with some ridiculous-sounding ideas as well—from showing “crazy love” to those the world may consider hard to accept, to having “crazy hope” in the power of God to redeem us and the world around us. Chapters also focus on “crazy dreamers,” “crazy peace,” and “crazy life.” Gelaude writes for those who wonder how to live a life following Jesus every day.


Beyond Belief by Don Lindman (CreateSpace)

In his third book, Don Lindman shares his faith journey, from fundamentalist Christian who thought he had all the answers, into his life and calling as a Covenant pastor. Lindman writes honestly about his questions and doubts, his struggles and his belief. His memoir features both humorous and poignant insights into ministry, as well as stories of real people and their spiritual growth. Beyond Belief is the story of how he began to let go of his doctrinal certainty and learned to say “I could be wrong” without losing his faith.


Graduation: “So, What Just Happened?” by Tom Swanson (Simple Faith Books)

North Park graduate, teacher, coach, and long-time Covenanter, Tom Swanson shares wisdom and advice gathered from a lifetime of working with youth. His advice is presented in a series of folksy “one-liners,” phrases that have helped Swanson teach in a way that sticks with students. He supplements that wisdom with his own engaging and highly readable reflections. Some phrases will be familiar, and some are more eclectic. Swanson’s aim is to encourage high school graduates through these one-liners, which have provided a road map for his own life.


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