Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Noticer by Andy Andrews

This is a story about a man named Jones (or Garcia, or Chen...however he appears to people). Jones comes into people's lives when they need a friend, some guidance, some perspective. The story is set in a town in Alabama where Jones moves in and out of lives. This book shares a few stories of the lives Jones touches. No one knows where he came from, where he sleeps, or even how to contact him, but he seems to be there when people need him the most. He offers them words of encouragement. But the words are not just platitudes, but rather words and ideas that are gems that can truly change a life. For instance, that someone's bad choices can put them in a place that is exactly where they need to be so they can grow and do things beyond their wildest dreams. Perspective means we look forward at the consequences of the choices we make today (a paraphrase of one of Jones' bits of wisdom). I think my favorite Jones interaction is with a widow who thinks that "she has outlived her usefulness." He shares with her about people who became successful when other people would "normally" be retiring. Overall I truly enjoyed this book. It is uplifting and gives a reader plenty to think about. I believe this book would be better if it shared God's improvement plan with the reader rather than being delivered as a self-improvement plan.

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