Book Review: Don’t Give the Enemy a Seat at Your Table by Louie Giglio
Louie Giglio is a pastor and speaker and the author of many good books. I find his teaching to be approachable, sometimes even simple, but deep and helpful. He writes and speaks in insightful ways and gives clear application to life. My one concern with Giglio is how he can use one sentence from scripture to make his arguments, sometimes without much other biblical support. While I find most of his teaching convincing and orthodox, I would hope for deeper biblical explanation to show the biblical basis and truth of his teaching.
Don’t Give the Enemy a Seat at Your Table is true to form in this way. Giglio’s point in this book is fantastic. He uses Psalm 23:5a (“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies”) to talk about how God has prepared a table for us, just the two of us, to eat and fellowship. Unfortunately, our enemy often tries to sit down at the table with us and interrupt and distract and draw us away from God. I think Giglio is absolutely right that the devil tries to infiltrate our minds and make us doubt and worry and turn away from our good and faithful God who is desiring our full attention and love. Throughout the book I hoped for a deeper analysis of the whole of Psalm 23 and of the connection of this line to other parts of the Bible, but the book was helpful nonetheless.
In the most helpful part of the book Giglio gets practical on how unhealthy thoughts invade our minds and how we can counteract them. Some parts are a bit over simplified, but he uses his own story to illustrate the efficacy of practices like memorizing scripture, rejecting the lies we tell ourselves, and proactively determining our thoughts.
Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone (probably high school age and up) who is working to win the battle for their mind. As someone who has struggled with intrusive negative thoughts, I found it helpful to hear from another Christian who has also struggled with this and who has some helpful techniques for leaning on God’s grace and walking with the Holy Spirit to renew my mind. To be clear, this book is not for those who deal with clinical anxiety or depression. These techniques might still be helpful, but overall this book is for those who deal with typical worries and struggles and I would recommend other resources for those with clinical diagnoses.
- Pastor Bryan