Sixty Minutes with God

More books by Jim

To order this book through the publisher, click here. Kirkhouse Publishing

The book is also available through Amazon.com and through some of the bookstores in your area.
Jim Klobuchar’s latest book, “Sixty Minutes With God,” is described by a pastor who’s read it as “the mother of all interviews.” It’s obviously an imaginary one but still provocative for those who struggle with faith. To these can be added the millions who have a lively skepticism about some of the dogma they are asked to accept, but want and try to believe nonetheless. For those who don’t believe at all, on the other hand, there might be some fugitive value in eavesdropping on the the recurrent dilemmas and whimsies of the dogged pilgrim who wrote this book.
Since God clearly has to adopt a human form to converse with his visitor, he arrives for their appointment in jeans and a turtle neck. He says he preferred that ensemble to coming as a burning bush, which probably would have created a communication problem. He also arrives with a wry disapproval of the traditional depictions of God as a robed octogenarian with a grey beard and the eyes of a hardrock prosecutor. But, in answer to one of the first questions, God confirms that he has had no beginning and will have no end. He says he finds this condition comforting. God confronts the pilgrim with relaxed rhetoric and a willingness to banter about two versions of creation in the Bible, a book he acknowledges that he would have liked to edit before it went onto the stands. But mostly they talk seriously about whether God has a blueprint for our lives (or is that a myth), how the believer can clarify and understand God’s will, or if that idea is grossly fogged by self-serving speculation. Can it be simplified? Can the pilgrim’s dilemmas about his or her relationship with God be simplified and freed from needless ambiguities to offer
some serenity.

Jim calls the book a “benign and imaginary encounter that forces me to sift through some of my own longstanding dilemmas about the shortest line to genuine peace (and) God is invited to do the prompting and cudgeling to keep the compass heading straight along the road.”

The author identifies himself as a largely mainstream believer. This is not exactly breaking news to God, being God. But the penitent also arrives with questions and some doubts about the hairier ballads in the Scriptures, especially the ones dealing with talking serpents and the sudden transformation of Lot’s wife into a block of salt. God concedes a few doubts about the authenticity of those scenes himself. But he will occasionally interrupt their stickier dialogue with a reminder to the inquisitive pilgrim that “although I love and forgive you, now and forever, your problem is that you have a limited mind.”

It’s the reason, God explains, that his way with humans and the world often seems mysterious. And he acknowledges that he not likely to shed that aura: if he did all of the ensuing revelations would drive the spiritual health industry out of business and probably empty most of the churches, synagogues and mosques.

Their talk ranges from questions about heaven and hell and the power of prayer to those questions asked by grieving and angry believers when tragedy or disaster occurs. Where was God then?

Why, in other words, does God “permit” slaughter and famine, wars and epidemics, health for some people and incurable disease for others? And what, after all, about the gender of God? At this, God scowls: “I didn’t come here,” he says, “to conduct a course in anatomy.”

They talk about the perversion of religious fervor from the Crusades to 9/11 but also about the stubborn presence of grace around the world, imbuing millions of volunteers and the compassionate with the will and energy to bring new lives to the poor and forgotten. They talk about the increasing disaffection for organized religion in some parts of America, but also the comeback of Christian fundamentalism. Sometimes the talk is warm and friendly, sometimes a little barbed. But they do get along which, the penitent acknowledges, is a relief.

Is there a conclusion?

There is. The book is relatively small and reads quickly. It might entertain and might befriend. Either way, or even if it doesn’t, it’s another look at the relationship between God and the puzzled earthling. It’s published by Kirk House of Minneapolis, and will be on the shelves of book stores and available through some ordering services on the internet. Kirk House can be reached at 952-835-4441, and Jim at
763-258-1371, as well as at jim@jimklobuchar.com.

Other of his books likely to be available at book stores include “Pursued by Grace,” his personal story of his rediscovery of faith and recovery from alcoholism; “The Cross Under the Acacia Tree,” the story of the epic mission to Africa of Rev. David and Eunice Simonson of Minnesota; and “Heroes Among Us,” sketches of people who’ve lived extraordinary lives, some of them famous, some obscure.

Jim’s authorship in the last few years includes “Knights and Knaves of Autumn,” which begins with some hilarious retrospectives of the early years of the Minnesota Vikings, an era in which Jim wryly insists the Vikings were more a wildlife refuge than a football team. From there it vaults into the here and now of Viking football, and gives the reader a veteran newspaperman’s insights into the King Midas atmospherics of today’s professional sports as well as evaluations of today’s stars and celebrities, from Cris Carter and Randy Moss to Dennis Green and Red McCombs.

Other of his books likely to be available at book stores include “Pursued by Grace,” his personal story of his rediscovery of faith and recovery from alcoholism; “The Cross Under the Acacia Tree,” the story of the epic mission to Africa of Rev. David and Eunice Simonson of Minnesota; and “Heroes Among Us,” sketches of people who’ve lived extraordinary lives, some of them famous, some obscure.

“Sixty Minutes with God” is or will soon be available in book stores and through Internet sources. If you’re unable to locate it or any of the other books, feel free to call 763-258-1371 or writejim@jimklobuchar.com.