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Embracing Obscurity: Becoming Nothing in Light of God’s Everything

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  496 ratings  ·  105 reviews
No matter how famous someone might be, the fact remains; most of the other seven billion people on Earth wouldn’t know him or her from the next person. Add this reality to one’s shrinking recognizability among the multiple billions down through history, and the worldly emphasis on standing out really falls flat; we’re all in this obscurity thing together.

Ironically, the tr
Paperback, 192 pages
Published October 1st 2012 by B Books (first published September 20th 2012)
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David Morton
Nov 28, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
Good message, too long.

I abandoned this book. Unfortunately, as is the case with many Christian Living books, this book takes a particular message and bests it into oblivion with an abundance of words. The message isn't bad. Put simply, the book says that the world isn't all about you, and it's actually all about God, so you should stop worrying about your achievements, the number of likes on your Facebook status or the number of people who heart or retweet your Twitter posts. Find your signific
Joseph McBee
Oct 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
"Will you walk worthy of the glorious gospel--even if no one ever knows your name?"

This quote from EMBRACING OBSCURITY is really what the whole book is about. On each page, the author shows us the excellencies of God and reminds us that we are called to make much of Jesus, not ourselves.

This powerful and convicting book strikes right at the heart of pride and stereotypical American Christianity. The Church today worships at the altar of celebrity and does so in the name of God.

This book is a pow
Gabrielle W.
Sep 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
First, yes you read that right, the book is by Anonymous.

"Choosing to reaming anonymous is not some ploy or gimmick to generate book sales.......I can only answer that I've come to realize embracing obscurity is not about wiping ourselves from existence but rather, voluntarily becoming nothing in the light of everything God is and has promised us. Why? So we can bring Him greater glory. It's about making Him, not ourselves, look good."

On my advance reading copy, some of the back cover reads (and
Oct 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those books I definitely read at the right time. Ironically, I started the book thinking I had a good grasp of living in obscurity. With every word I read, I winced. Ouch! My pride!

This book recalibrated my understanding of pride and obscurity. I love that it deals with the opposite as well - what do we do when we do find ourselves in the spotlight for a season?

I read it as I'm mentally preparing for some major life changes, some which will redefine my identity and others which w
Jul 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Embracing Obscurity....not seeking the pleasures of this world (ie fame, fortune, etc.) but seeking to praise God knowing your riches will come in the next life. Good, solid biblical book that I would recommend.
Saralyn Olson
Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book has been so helpful in my process of learning about obscurity. The author, who embraces obscurity by not giving their name, does an excellent job of using relatable language, hypothetical and true stories, and most importantly, scripture. It is both convicting and hopeful. I highly recommend this book.
Jul 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It gets better as the book progresses. Chapters 8 and 9 are fantastic. Highlights everywhere. Very practical for Christians at any point in their walk. It is not about us.
Greg Wilson
Sep 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I received an advanced reader copy of this book. The book’s marketer found me through my book review blog. I was sent a copy before it was made available to the public. I am proud that as a reviewer I received this book before anyone else.

The above statement makes me exactly the type of person who needs to read this book. It is about overcoming our pride problem. We all have one and this book will help you see that and hopefully overcome it by “Embracing Obscurity.”

The author confronts us with
Brenda Huntsman
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I will pick up again. Need to be reminded that this walk is not about me.
Lindsey Smith
This book is very unique as 1) it has yet to be released and 2) it was written by an anonymous author. I had a friend go to a conference with her husband and they received two advance copies of this book. Since she knows that I am an avid reader, she asked if I wanted to read this book with her and meet once a week to discuss it.

The entire point of this book is that we are nothing in light of our glorious God. It talks about our pride, our need for entitlement, and our need for recognition and r
Loraine Alcorn
Oct 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
This was a really great devotional and a helpful book for me to read. I really liked it. It was easy to read and I could agree with most everything the unknown author had to say. I think this message needed to be said and I do try to comply with most of his suggestions. That being said Im not sure everyone will. I am not rich my any means and I am just a homemaker and blogger in no danger of becoming famous or even well known. The thing is I do try to keep humble and though I could go for for th ...more
Amy Clark
Jan 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
"As you read these words [Phil. 2:5-10], marvel at the majesty and splendor of a God who would create innumerable species with a word, a God who knows trillions of stars by name yet would choose to become "relatively unknown" for your sake and mine." Anonymous - Embracing Obscurity

More than your average book on humility, the author actually practices what he preaches by remaining anonymous! Some of the material was very thought-provoking, some maybe a little contrived. He gives multiple hypothet
K Terreson
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"To my Humble King, who has ever taught by example. And to all those, who like me, have clamored long enough."

Clamor is such a good word for the sounds of our hearts when we actually listen to our hang ups, which the anonymous author of this book is faithful and gentle to point out. Our demand for our own recognition and praise is discordant, loud and sounds nothing like our King.

This book prods in the self-centered sins we hold dear, and the hang ups that keep us from following Chri
A counter-cultural look at significance from a Biblical perspective that is well researched and lived out by the anonymous author. Each chapter includes strong Scriptural references/ passages and discussion questions. Highly recommended for individual or group study.
Lauren Carnahan
May 28, 2018 rated it it was ok
I had a hard time finishing this book. The concept was interesting, but it seems to just go on and on and on, sharing concepts that all seemed similar to me. I liked some of the aspects, but to me it negates all of the amazing things people accomplished for God who weren’t in obscurity. God has a large track record with plucking people from obscurity and pushing them into the spotlight for his glory, with people like Moses, Esther, and King David being amazing examples. I also don’t believe that ...more
Jul 28, 2018 rated it liked it
The most unique thing about this book is the absence of a name. Just the fact that the author refused to give his name is thought-inspiring: that model resonates more than some of the content of the book. The book essentially challenges the business driven model of self-promotion endemic to American church life. Should we embracing the spotlight or embracing obscurity. The author does a good job of unpacking the biblical precedent for little earthly praise or recognition. A possible flaw in the ...more
Lexie Darce
Jan 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I read a ton of books, but very rarely do I read one that changes my life and my perspective as much as this book has. I emphatically give it 5 stars. After reading it, I want to personally hand out copies to all of my brothers and sisters in Christ.

The book impossible to describe in its entirety- you simply have to read it. The author- who, true to his book’s message, remains anonymous- does an incredible job of explaining exactly what it entails to become nothing so that God can become everyt
Kev Willoughby
Oct 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you were to pick this book up in a bookstore and just preview it by reading the one chapter on embracing servanthood, you will buy the book. And you will be glad that you did.

This book will help you to take an honest look at your motivations for the things that you do. One of the many statements that spoke to me was on the topic of the difficulty of true service. As Christians, we may not think twice about volunteering to go halfway around the world on a mission trip to a third-world country
Ryan Hawkins
Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
On the one hand, the writing was a little light. The Scripture was from the NLT and so not too deep, and the chapters were nothing profoundly fancy. And yet, it was an extremely refreshing read—a needed and helpful read, for me and I’m sure for many others. Moreover, the fact the he did write it anonymously does help ground the creditability and prove the truthfulness of the content.

Some chapters were much better than others, but particularly the first few chapters and then the last two were my
Bob Hayton
Oct 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
I don’t remember the last time I saw a recently published book with the author’s name given as Anonymous. In Christian circles as much as in your average secular bookstore or website, nothing seems to be as prominent as the author’s name. The more well known the author, the larger space is devoted to his or her name on the book cover. But with a title like "Embracing Obscurity: Becoming Nothing in Light of God’s Everything," the absence of an author name seems appropriate. Still, I searched thro ...more
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
A very good book. I love the fact that the author is "anonymous", thus demonstrating the theme of the book. Overall, the book seemed to be slow at first and somewhat a basic read for the first couple of chapters, but about the third or fourth chapter, it really challenged my own thinking and heart attitude. I give this book a high recommendation for discipleship relationships, believing that it will both challenge and encourage the reader to faithful walk with Christ. ...more
Daniel Addo
Nov 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Painful, honest, liberating truth

This book is a painful look into our relative insignificance. Perhaps the authors anonymity allows him to be more honest about the difficult facts of life like suffering. Yet, this book is liberating because the author calls us to abandon sand castles for eternal mansions. This is a good deal!
Jun 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The truths discussed in this book will challenge you to evaluate your perspective of the Christian life. Humility in the likeness of Christ is explained and exhorted in an attempt to get the Christian to 'embrace' it rather than extol it.
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! Great take on humility!

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for success. This will help redefine what success actually means & prioritize your life accordingly.
Elisha Lawrence
Feb 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Easy read yet crucial for every Christian. Invest in the next life, embrace humility
So good! This is the type of book to read over a period of time and really absorb the message. Every Christian needs to read this!!
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
A very challenging but great book! It will call you out of so many things and leave you examining so much but really changes your perspective on a lot.
Samantha Lambert
Jul 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Chris French
Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christianity
Would you be okay with people 100 years from now not knowing who you were or what you had done? Of course, your children will remember you and they’ll probably even tell their own children about you, but what if the marks you’ve tried to make on history and your family never made it to your great-grandchildren? Your name and your exploits will be lost to history, never to be spoken again.

Maybe you’re okay with that, but are you okay with the good things you do today never being noticed? What if
Ruth Hill
Oct 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Well, I think the name of this book honestly does speak for itself. And it is indeed a "stroke of genius" that we don't even know who the author is. It fits the very thing this book proposes--do not seek any glory for yourself. True humility is what is expected of the Christian, and this book certainly made me think. This is not an easy nor popular lesson, but it is vital to the Christian walk.

I found myself not connecting with the book as well as I normally do, and I think the main reason is th
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Books can be attributed to "Anonymous" for several reasons:

* They are officially published under that name
* They are traditional stories not attributed to a specific author
* They are religious texts not generally attributed to a specific author

Books whose authorship is merely uncertain should be attributed to Unknown.

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Kazuo Ishiguro insists he’s an optimist about technology.  “I'm not one of these people who thinks it's going to come and destroy us,” he...
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“Christ’s obscurity was as purposefully planned—and equally glorifying to God—as His journey to fame and His fall from the public’s favor.” 1 likes
“We are here for only a moment, visitors and strangers in the land as our ancestors were before us. Our days on earth are like a passing shadow, gone so soon without a trace. 1 Chronicles 29:15 (NLT)” 0 likes
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