Book Review – Uncovered by Rod Tucker

Let’s be honest for a minute – on a scale of 1 to 10 – how honest and open do you think you are? How honest are you with yourself? Your own sins, your own baggage, your own issues, etc. How honest are you with others? Do you feel like you can share your mistakes, your shortcomings, and your junk with people at church? How does our lack of being honest with ourselves and our fear of being honest with other people hurt our relationships? These are all the sorts of the questions Rod Tucker addresses in Uncovered.

The Positive

Let me be honest with you – I loved this book. I loved Rod Tucker’s desire to see the church become more honest. I loved his desire to see the church become a haven of grace. I loved the fact that he points out that the gospel frees us up to be open. I love the fact that he challenges us to be more honest with ourselves and with our Uncoveredchurch community. I especially loved how he tied honesty in with maintaining our image and focusing on the American dream; it’s a lack of authenticity and honesty that leads us to consumerism in order to cover up our shortcomings.

There are some great chapters in this book, let me just highlight a few of those for you:
➢ Chapter 2: Self Protection – Rod shares about how we use dishonesty to protect our self-image.
➢ Chapter 3: Sewing, Hiding, Blaming – We resort to these three tactics (just like Adam and Eve) to cover up the things we are ashamed of.
➢ Chapter 15: Being a Safe Place – “We need to treat people exactly how God, because of Jesus, treats us.” The keyword is grace!
➢ Chapter 16: Why Honesty Matters – We can use excess and stuff as a way of hiding. This hinders our relationships.
➢ Chapter 18: Mirrors – A brilliant short story about a girl who all of a sudden discovers her reflection.
➢ Chapter 20: Reconciliation – God is in the business of bringing people back to himself. If we want to be a part of that, we need to be honest with ourselves and admit that we were once in a position of need, just like all the lost people out there.

I could see myself using this book as fodder for sermons but I could really see myself handing this book over to some church small group leaders, telling them to open it up and read certain chapters as a form of training. In other words this is a much needed resource for the church. We need to listen to a lot of what Rod Tucker is saying in this book.

The Negative

Again I will be honest with you – I loved this book – but there were some parts I didn’t like or agree with. 1)The chapter on homosexuality – while there was nothing in this chapter that I necessarily disagree with or reject, it seems as disjointed from the rest of the book. The chapter doesn’t really “fit,” so I am not sure why he included it. More importantly though… 2)His idea that “honesty is the point.” He says “honesty is not something to move past.” He argues against people who want to move past “simply being honest and figure out how to quit sinning” (56). Although I would agree with him, that “quitting sinning” is not the goal of our faith, simply being honest isn’t the goal either. Our goal is to be Christ-like, yes that includes honesty but when it comes to spiritual growth, honesty is a major tool for bringing the sin to the light and allowing Christ to transform us. What is a bit disappointing about this book is that he builds it off the premise that “honesty is the point.” It almost seems that for Rod Tucker, honesty is the silver bullet that will solve most if not all of the Church’s current problems. However honesty in and of itself certainly will not solve any of our problems, only Jesus can do that, thankfully Jesus has given us the grace to be honest, and that will definitely help the church grow into becoming Christlike.

This book was a short read. It was both provocative and challenging. As I read I felt the desire to grow in honesty with people in my life around me. Rod’s goal was to show us how to cultivate honesty within the church, having finished the book I can say that this book will certainly help in doing that.

As a bonus to you, the reader, I want to give you a free copy of this book. So Today only (April 7th) you can download the book on Amazon by clicking the link below. After that it will be on sale through amazon for only $2.99.


(Note: I received this book from Kregel in exchange for an impartial review.)


Published by cwoznicki

Chris Woznicki is an Assistant Adjunct Professor of Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary. He works as the regional training associate for the Los Angeles region of Young Life.

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