At the young age of 26, Trip Lee (born William Lee Barefield III) has been working hard, by God’s grace, to glorify Christ. Trip is signed to Reach Records, he has released four albums, he has been on multiple tours (US and overseas), and he has been a guest rapper on a slew of singles and albums – that’s just his music career. As a minister of the life changing gospel of Jesus Christ, Trip has been pursuing a Biblical and Theological Studies degree from Boyce College (the undergraduate school of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary), he has completed a Pastoral Internship with Capitol Hill Baptist Church, and he is a consistent speaker at some of the most biblically-centric conferences across the country. (I know I’m missing some other things God has allowed him to do.) Now, enter Trip Lee – the author.
The first thing I do when I pick up a book is take a look at the endorsements. If there are authors whom I read and opinions in respect, then the author has pretty much won me over. Granted, I usually read a few pages of the introduction or the first chapter, but endorsements by my favorite writers pretty much guarantees a sale. Trip Lee’s book, “The Good Life” shares its name with his most recently released studio album. (Which, by the way, is phenomenal. Get it here if you don’t have it yet.) To put it plainly, his book is about is about what it is titled as – the good life. Trip explains the good life as, “a life within our reach and yet beyond anything this world has to offer.”
Trip’s book consists of 12 short chapters divided into four easy to read sections. Although each section leads into the next, I believe that each section has the ability to stand on it’s own.
Section one introduces the reader to the good life. This section is three chapters of Trip comparing and contrasting what believers know to be the good life with what non-believers, i.e. the world, believes to be the good life. He slowly unpacks the three great liars in this life – “the world, the flesh and the Devil” (p.19) and lets the reader know how these lies have “promised the good life, but in reality they only kept us from it and leads us to death” (p.26). From this point, Trip beings to delve into the everlasting truths of the Savior.
Sections two and three are where Trip really starts to unpack the goodness of Christ. You can see from the chapter titles alone where he is taking the reader:
– Ch 4: The Good News
– Ch 5: The Good Book
– Ch 6: Good People
– Ch 7: Good Works
– Ch 8: Good Stuff
– Ch 9: Good Dreams
– Ch 10: Good Times
I appreciate how Trip is ever so careful to explain the gospel (what it is and the importance of it) and the scriptures. He is purposeful in the words he chooses and how he explains the concepts of repenting and being saved. But even further, he explains how there is nothing we, in and of ourselves, can do in our saving. He points the glory to whom rightfully deserves it – God. Even in his explaination of “how to live the good life” (section three), he is careful to give God the praise in his initiative of offering salvation to undeserving peoples.
The fourth and final section of the book is Trip explaining the good that comes from a good God. How we are called to have unwavering faith because “God has not promised to prosper, watch over, or bless those who rebel against Him” (p.141). He again encourages repentance and encourages the reader that no one, not even Satan himself, can hold your sins against you once you have submitted your life to the authority of Jesus Christ. He ends to book talking about the “forever good life” in heaven (p.152). An appropriate end to an encouraging book.
I particularly like he ends each chapter with an excerpt of the lyrics of a song from his album that relates to the subject matter of said chapter. Nice touch.
I believe Trip Lee has written an excellent book that I would feel comfortable recommending to believers and non-believers alike. I think it would be excellent to use in a teen study. I’ve thought about picking up another copy so that my daughter and I could go through it together. His writing is refreshing, energizing, and comfortable. A reader decently versed in theology could tell that he is tackling some deep truths, but in no way is he speaking over the head of the reader. At 26, I believe Trip has a platform to speak to teens and young adults in a way that meets them on their level of life experience, and he can relate the scriptures to them in a way to show how meaningful and relevant the Bible is to their day to day lives. On the other side, he writes with a maturity that an older crowd, well versed in life and scripture, would have no problem gleaning some nuggets of truth from book about living a good life. Bottom line – this is a well done book by a godly brother whose life is genuinely lost in Christ.
(This review was written on my own accord. I was not asked by anyone from Moody Publishing or Reach Records to write a favorable review of this book.)