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Drops Like Stars

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  1,864 ratings  ·  152 reviews
We plot. We plan. We assume things are going to go a certain way. And when they don't, we find ourselves in a new place---a place we haven't been before, a place we never would have imagined on our own.It is the difficult and the unexpected, and maybe even the tragic, that opens us up and frees us to see things in new ways.Many of the most significant moments in our lives ...more
Hardcover, 147 pages
Published July 28th 2009 by Zondervan (first published July 9th 2009)
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Community Reviews

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Apr 30, 2012 Trevor rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
First, I read the book in 25 minutes. The bulk of the pages are filled with photographs or one sentence paragraphs. I didn't feel like the photography added anything to the "experience" of reading the book - but I'm mostly a left-brained thinker with occasional (short-lived) jolts of right-brained creativity, so maybe I didn't appreciate the art like someone else would. Basically, if Rob Bell had a blog then the content of this book would only amount to a few posts.

Second, the content that IS in
The topic of this book is how suffering can enhance creativity. Not that the author puts it so directly. Instead he looks at scenarios of joy and grief, of life and death, both from Scripture and from contemporary times. He demonstrates how God can use our suffering to create something of beauty.

Rob Bell also talks about art in its many forms and shows how it is often able to speak more clearly to its audience when the composer has suffered and struggled, both in the production of the work and
Short and to the point, yet Bell somehow manages to remain inspirational. Great read, wish it were longer.
If I had read this book a decade ago, I would have thought it was absolutely brilliant, but I can no longer say that.

I liked the concept and the artistic nature of it. I liked a lot of the photography. I especially liked the bit about the experiment in the sculpture class in which students had to focus on either quantity or quality of works produced. That was brilliant.

However, one of the primary themes of this book no longer jibes with me. Yes, it is true that pain, suffering, and heartache are
Read this short coffee table book in about 30 minutes at Books-A-Million. I was hoping for more content, but from what I'd heard I wasn't expecting much more than what I got.

The quick read was enjoyable, thought-provoking (wouldn't expect anything from Rob that wasn't), simple, yet profound. In writing this brief review what comes to mind are those little signs that you see in random stores that say "Simplify" (which in a way is somewhat contradictory to its message seeing that you have to add
I like Rob Bell, I say, having read this and Sex God. Might call this a kaleidoscope of ideas, or what's that other thing? A collage. Thoughtful profundities in an elaborate, over-sized, colorful, image-driven, text-light book. It's like 12" x 14."

So I liked it and the art of it and the power of the minimal text on the gigantic page and most of all the reminders of the truths that matter, but I was definitely glad the library had a copy.

My favorite snippets are these:
1. From Art and Fear by B
Kelsey Whing
Rob Bell’s novel Drops Like Stars: A Few Thoughts on Creativity and Suffering is considered a coffee table book by trade, but it is not the usual large, spatial investment with pictures created to captivate and ensnare. He seeks to discover the art in the agony, and give the audience, “a few thoughts on suffering and creativity.” In his book, Bell explains in a raw and compelling fashion the six different “art forms” that suffering creates in a person. They are the arts of disruption, honesty, t ...more
Ben Zajdel
Rob Bell has written a book about creativity and suffering. And it is probably one of the most creative books on the market. Those familiar with Bell's writing style won't be surprised much by Drops Like Stars. It's the same streaming thought, minimalistic writing that one has come to expect from the Mars Hill pastor. But the new twist is photography. This book is filled with amazing photographs and has a very original design.

The message of the book isn't bad, either. The book centers on suffer
I like rob bell regardless of the fact that we disagree on everything important and metaphysical. This book is beautiful,it isn't pushy, and it goes against the normal "Christian" explanation of suffering. I was impressed, although it seem a bit f a waste of paper seeing how it doesn't have so many words.
Rob Bell is so cool! I like the creative presentation, and the content was enlightening and fun to read.
Tim Beck
Drops like Stars is not like many books on anyone's bookshelf. as a matter of fact - it's dimensions make it difficult to literally fit on my bookshelf. it's more of a coffee table type book.
filled with creative art and stunning photography with words sprinkled throughout, Drops Like Stars is author Rob Bell's attempt to connect creativity and suffering.

in fact, the tag line says that: A Few Thoughts on Creativity and Suffering.

that's just what it is... a few thoughts... stories... anecdotes.
Nov 24, 2009 Alison rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Alison by: RELEVANT podcast
Shelves: non-fiction, religion
Wow. What an incredible book.

Rob Bell has a way of getting to the heart of the matter and presenting in such a way that you just know it to be the truth.

His topic this time is creativity and suffering. He never states a clear thesis but this book is more art and poetry than academic tome.

The section where he speaks on the prodigal son was really powerful to me, as was the discussion on boxes (in the box, out of the box, having your boxes destroyed).

Rob Bell brings to the table a version of Chris
2 stars = "it was okay."

First, I read the book in 25 minutes. The bulk of the pages are filled with photographs or one sentence paragraphs. I didn't feel like the photography added anything to the "experience" of reading the book - but I'm mostly a left brain thinker, so I could be biased. If Rob Bell had a blog then the content of this book would only amount to a few posts.

Second, the content that IS in the book isn't really that great/helpful/eye-opening/insightful/etc. (insert your own adject
Bell's ruminations on the connection between creativity and suffering is not so much a "book" as it is a collection of short meditations, anecdotes, and photographs about that link. It's certainly not a theological text, nor is it as wordy as his previous efforts, which are still more stylized and terse than even many of his peers. Drops Like Stars is the kind of reflection that can be read almost in one sitting, though some of the ideas presented will need time to sink in. It seems that its use ...more
Masterj22 issues we all need
I got this For Christmas and finished it the next day. i do not do that. Words are hard for me. Reading is hard. books... even simple ones often take at least a month. so what does that say about this book? a couple things. One being that this is not a word heavy book, there are words but it is not your normal 130 page book. every word is not just picked for a reason but the size shape color are all picked for a reason. the second thing me finishing this book so quickly says is just how engaging ...more
Peter Tang
Jul 23, 2009 Peter Tang is currently reading it
Recommends it for: All People
“Drops like Stars” is Rob Bell’s newest book. It’s the biggest, heaviest, but the shortest read compared to his other books. This is not a book to rush but to sit and think.

Rob has caused people to question his theology. And it’s a valid thing to discuss but if you are reading this in order to prove Rob to be a heretic then I suggest you don’t read this. Because you will simply take art theory out of context and be making useless arguments that doesn’t do anything. We must remember that were no
Hansen Wendlandt
I tend to doubt that preachers today are all that unique in their attempts to get us to think differently about God. Christians anytime and anywhere do well to quote Jesus’ favorite phrase: “You have heard it said… but I tell you…” Bell’s proto-hipster attempts to reform cultural ideas about God do, however, stand out for their liberal evangelism, distinctive narrative styling, and artistic imagination. Consider how few preachers could seamlessly include Hugh Gallagher’s brilliant and sadistic c ...more
Joshua Skogerboe
Drops Like Stars is brilliant. As an artist and a Pastor (and an Arts Pastor), Rob inspired me to think again about the significance of creative endeavor. He stirred me again to consider the importance of suffering. As a gift. And God meets us in the suffering and He is reflected through us in our creative endeavor. It is one of the most physically beautiful books I've ever held, and the design compliments, illustrates, and propels these themes with a genius use of white space and well chosen co ...more
I went to Rob Bell's conference, "Drops Like Stars" in November 2009. It was another wonderful and enlightening session that always leaves me with a fresh perspective on not only religion, but life... though ultimately the two are forever connected since "everything is spiritual." This book is a wonderful "highlight" of that session as it captures all of the main points, ancedotes, images, and questions from his teaching. Ultimately, the main focus is that suffering unites us. And he shows this ...more
I really liked this book. It was simple and to the point. It wasn't my favorite of his (So far that would have to be ("What we talk about when we talk about God")
My favorite quote from the book was this one and I couldn't agree more.

"Sometimes what happens to us when we suffer is that we become open to the mercy and grace and gratitude and gift and appreciation and joy that are always around us all the time, even in a sandwich."

I have to admit, that quote is pretty true to my experience.

A fascinating and unique book that is hard to describe. It's a book that has more art and pictures than it does words, and if you're not familiar with or appreciative of the postmodern artistic spirit, it may not make much sense. In this book, Rob Bell addresses the age old question of "theodicy" - how can a good God exist when there's suffering. Or, at least, what is the meaning or redemptive quality of suffering? What makes this book outstanding is that he addresses the issue not with the abst ...more
Emily Timbol
I picked this us casually at a Barnes & Noble, and couldn't tear my eyes off of it until I finished it one hour later. Very fews books I've read have drawn me in like this one did, and created such a strong emotional reaction.

Bell uses a unique technique with this book, it's large like a coffee table book, he only put a few words on every page in many cases, there were beautiful or hauntingly simple illustrations throughout, and he made it very short. I think the length was one of the thing
Sean McBride
Mr. Bell some very erudite points to bear in this short, but poignant book. It is purely an inspirational book, meant to make the brain stretch that extra inch to, for lack of a better term (sorry Mr. Bell) think outside the box. He brings questions to bear in such a beautiful, melodic and poetic way that it's hard to put the book down as he gently shifts from one point to the next (and this edition has some great photography to go along with it. I hate to say it, but the Zondervan edition is mu ...more
I have not read this book of Bell's so I will not attempt comment on how he dealt with suffering from a biblical standpoint. But I will sound a warning bell that Bell dances precariously close to heresy in many of his eisegetical positions dealing with biblical issues and doctrine. His views align closely to emotive conjecture rather than a clear exegetical interpretation of Scripture.

Having read other works by Bell, and listened to him speak, he comes across with passion and strong empathy, bu
I read this short book in the bookstore. It is a artistic book about the hard parts of life. I admire people who don't shy away or veil the sheer hurt of the human experience. This book has beautiful pictures and beautiful thoughts. Even if you don't like Christianity or Rob Bell, this is still a good read.
Lee Harmon
Here's a short little booklet you can read over your lunch hour. Rob Bell, the controversial emergent mega-church pastor and best-selling author of Love Wins, tackles the subject of grief.

Bell is a minister, but doesn't turn this into a book about God. It's not tough love and it's not sappy sentiment. Just words to think about and draw inspiration from.

If you're thinking about buying this as a gift book, I wouldn't say that it's appropriate for the deep-in-grief stage, but rather the help-me-st
Maddie Hewitt
I read this book in about 30 minutes. It really wasn't what I was expecting with only a few words or sentences on each page. Disappointing as I loved Rob's book Velvet Elvis and was expecting much more from it.
Josh Shepherd
I like Rob, and I like coffee table books. I just don't like them THAT much. Rob's art by elimination sometimes strikes me as contextual, less often as slightly annoying. He has more in common with the poet than the academic. I'm down with both, but I don't think they should be judged by each other's standards. I also think Rob tastes saltier and spreads more light than most of his critics. As a follower of Christ, I take these to be valid measuring sticks, however uncomfortable subjective measu ...more
OB Oechsle
This book is an amazingly unique and unconventional piece of literature that relays incredible and thought-provoking messages. Bell taps into so many spiritual truths that you have to read this book multiple times to catch all of them. Bell uses visual and written examples (sometimes both) to tap into these spiritual truths, making the book and the messages that much more meaningful and easy to understand. One of my favorite examples of this is the quote by Warren Zevon, a musician recently diag ...more
(Non-Fiction, Spiritual Living) I like Rob Bell. His books read like a message, like a conversation with someone, giving them an intimate feeling. This book has the same tone, but it is massive and includes many really cool photographs. It’s been awhile since I read all of Bell’s books, so I’m not sure where I would place this one in the lineup, but I definitely liked it. Of course, I liked the graphics, but I loved all the anecdotes about suffering and living a life despite suffering and hardsh ...more
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Rob Bell is the founding pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is the author of the bestselling Velvet Elvis, Sex God, Jesus Wants to Save Christians, and Drops Like Stars. A graduate of Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois, and Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, Bell speaks to large crowds around the world and has appeared in a pioneering series of short ...more
More about Rob Bell...
Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality Jesus Wants to Save Christians: A Manifesto for the Church in Exile What We Talk about When We Talk about God

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“May you see drops like stars.” 2 likes
“It’s in that place that we’re reminded that true life comes when we’re willing to admit that we’ve reached the end of ourselves, we’ve given up, we’ve let go, we’re willing to die to all of our desires to figure it out and be in control. We lose our life, only to find it.” 2 likes
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