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Reborn on the Fourth of July; The Challenge of Faith, Patriotism & Conscience

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4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  54 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
For decades now, the United States has proudly claimed the mantle of "the world's only superpower" based on military might and the scope of military interventions throughout the world. As a result, whole generations are growing up with the understanding that war is the norm, that perpetual conflict is a way of life. But is it the way of Christ? Logan Mehl-Laituri grew up i ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published July 4th 2012 by InterVarsity Press (first published June 1st 2012)
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Angela
Apr 27, 2012 Angela rated it it was amazing
In Reborn on the Fourth of July, Logan Mehl-Laituri speaks truthfully about his experience of war in the midst of a cultural climate that often turns a deaf ear to the reality of war and the lives of veterans. In contrast to the simplistic platitudes which surround conversations about war and military service, Mehl-Laituri throws open the doors to his own experience and invites the reader into a complex picture of what it might mean to truly struggle with questions of war, violence, patriotism, ...more
JR. Forasteros
Jul 04, 2012 JR. Forasteros rated it it was amazing
Is it ever appropriate for Christians to kill in the name of Jesus?

Church history has a long tradition of debating this, with everyone agreeing that mostly the answer is No. We diverge at the question of war: many Christians ascribe to some version of Augustine’s Just War theory, which claims that under some circumstances, war may be necessary and good (hence “Just”). Many other Christians follow the more ancient tradition of the earliest Christians in confessing Pacifism. Pacifism holds that it
...more
Mark Wilson
Jul 08, 2012 Mark Wilson rated it it was amazing
The subtitle of Logan Mehl-Laituri's newly published Reborn on the Fourth of July is: The Challenge of Faith, Patriotism, and Conscience. Throughout his gripping account of his journey from patriotic combatant in Iraq to conscientious objector, the roles played by faith, patriotism, and conscience intertwine; but it is faith that ignites Mehl-Laituri's evolution and determines the balance between patriotism and conscience.

In his "Epilogue" the author speaks of learning to "inhabit the middle gro
...more
Jeff Porter
Mar 29, 2015 Jeff Porter rated it it was amazing
This is not just an excellent read and a page turner (even though I needed to wake up early the next morning, I couldn’t go to bed while finishing the last 3rd of the book), it is also an important book. In an era when Christianity is deeply intertwined with right wing politics and when it seems patriotism cannot be divorced from supporting military campaigns, narratives by Christians on the front lines are all the more important. The author’s goal is not to convince the reader to think one way ...more
Carrie
Jul 03, 2012 Carrie rated it really liked it
Shelves: theology, biographies
Important read for Christians in America. To consider the experience of those who have served, who also identify as Christian, to consider the individuals and their humanity, I'm not sure how often this happens, especially in the church.

Patriotism is more than gleefully funding the military industrial complex and flying flags. And, Christianity is more than going to church and driving a car with a fish symbol stuck on the trunk. How do we care for those who serve their country, beyond sending m
...more
Brian Murphy
Aug 06, 2012 Brian Murphy rated it it was amazing
Wow. This was so good. Logan is a friend of mine and sent me an advance screener copy of the book. I went into it thinking "I pretty much know Logan's story and it'll be cool to see it written down." What I found blew all of my expectations out of the water. Amazingly powerful story and expertly crafted. Shook me to my core. I want to say "If you are..." or "If you care about..." but I could list pretty much everything.

I recommend this to everyone. My favorite book in years.
Kate Robertson
Aug 02, 2012 Kate Robertson rated it it was amazing
I am still reading this awesome book! His wording is simply poetic. I have the pleasure of working with the author's sister, and she lent me the book to read. I keep reading out loud passages that I love! Right now my favorite one is: "I found that the thin red line between sinner and saint is not always so easy to discern, that the violence in the world is directly correlative to the violence in each of us."

I am looking forward to reading the rest of it!
Mike
Aug 09, 2012 Mike rated it it was amazing
Wow - eye opening and paradigm busting book. "in 2009 and 2010 alike, the raw number of suicides among active duty service members outnumbers the amount of combat fatalities in Iraq and Afghanistan combined. Then, upon discharge, the proportions skyrocket: over seventeen veterans end their own lives every day."
Dave McNeely
Jun 26, 2012 Dave McNeely rated it really liked it
Very insightful and poignant memoir of a Christian who felt compelled to no longer take up arms yet wished to remain faithful to his service in the military. Raises provocative theological questions with a very practical and compelling first-person account.
Eric
Ran out of time with this one. Message and story were quite good, the writing didn't pull me in so much which explains why my time with it from the library ran out. Would highly recommend this book for any military personnel who are considering becoming conscientious objectors.
Rick
Jan 09, 2013 Rick rated it really liked it
I've never been a soldier, so I knew little of what they go through. I was intrigued and inspired by this book as it recounts the author's crisis of conscience which led him to apply for conscientious objector status while he was in the military, after he was in combat in Iraq. Very well done.
Maria Longley
Jan 18, 2013 Maria Longley rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, ma, 2012
Powerful memoir of Mehl-Laituri's experience of being a soldier in the US army and becoming a conscientious objector while still in service. It's also a very heart-moving plea to support veterans.
Dani
Jul 30, 2013 Dani rated it it was amazing
Being the daughter of a Vietnam veteran, who many decades after the war took his life, I long for access to his journal (he didn't keep one). He never shared about his experience in Vietnam as a Marine on the front lines, and I knew not to ask. Reading Reborn on the Fourth of July was like reading a mash up my dad and my journals. This book is an example of why I love reading: access to the seeming inaccessible. Mehl-Laituri does not shy away from sharing honestly and whole-heartedly. From chapt ...more
Karl Mitchell
Jan 02, 2016 Karl Mitchell rated it it was amazing
While I've read many accounts from non-passive pacifists regarding the biblical reasoning for nonviolence, it was good to finally read a book by a modern soldier turned nonviolent activist. Very good read and very helpful resources!
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Logan M. Isaac, MTS, M.Litt is an Iraq veteran who has been writing the wake of war as an author, advocate, and academic since his honorable but reluctant discharge from the Army in 2006 as a Noncommissioned Officer. Before graduating magna cum laude from the largest private university in Hawaii, Logan became the first prior infantryman of the Global War on Terror to to return to their former comb ...more
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