Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me is, as the title says, a memoir… of sorts. The book is a collection of stories, all woven together, of Ian Morgan Cron’s life so far. Most of his recollections center on his father, a mysterious, frightening, and almost legendary man who is somehow (but Cron is never sure quite how) part of the CIA. Cron chronicles his childhood spent in the shadow of his father’s alcoholism, struggling to understand where God is in all of this. The story follows Cron into adulthood, where his faith is restored, he confronts his own addiction, and he is able to begin the healing process, finally understanding his troubled father a little more and trusting God completely.
While I had difficulties with some of the theology (the suggestion that God would feel the need to apologize for hardships we face and the reality/symbolism of Communion were the main ones), these differences weren’t enough to even come close to diminishing the overall message of the book — that God sees us, knows us, and loves us, even as we walk through difficulties. Cron has a gift for storytelling, finding humor even in the bleakest remembrances and beautifully recounting the emotions of a young boy. His descriptions of his mother were so tenderly written that I honestly found myself crying at some points.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone, as it was a very, very enjoyable and inspiring read.
Many thanks to Thomas Nelson Publishing for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book to review. All opinions expressed are mine entirely.