In our week-long study of A.W. Tozer’s The Pursuit of God I thought it would be fitting to review the most recent biography written on the life of this extraordinary man.
A Passion For God is the title of Lyle Dorsett’s latest biography featuring the life of Aiden Wilson Tozer. The title perfectly describes the persistent devotion that Tozer had in pursuing God and describes the intimacy he had with the Almighty. The book offers an amazing insight into Aiden’s journey from a small farm in western Pennsylvania and into the hearts of so many devout followers of Christ. While no work could really get into the mysteries of what led and directed Tozer, A Passion For God offers a remarkable glimpse into the circumstances that led to this uneducated preacher’s rise to scholarship.
The book begins by showing Aiden’s humble beginnings and takes us to his lonely conversion. One thing that is remarkably true about Tozer is, midst a vibrant ministry, he felt incredibly alone. Through all of the hardships and accomplishments of his life, Tozer felt that there were few who understood him and there wasn’t much companionship in following after Christ.
While many biographies tend to veil the true nature of their subject, preferring to touch on the highlights instead of the valleys, Dorsett reveals that A.W. Tozer was just as flawed as any other man. It is incredibly important to realize where Tozer came from and to see all of the factors that shaped his worldview and ministry.
It is astounding to see that, while Tozer was leading the pack in pursuing God, he had neglected to pursue his wife Ada and her interests. There seems to be a close connection to being a spokesperson for intimacy with God and struggling in family life. Even John Piper has openly expressed the issues he has faced with his ministry and marriage. Perhaps we can learn to be both passionate in our love for God and attentive to the needs of our loved ones.
After long admiring the man, it was incredibly valuable to read about his life. Too often we can follow the teachings of those we look up to without heading the struggles they had to circumnavigate along the way.
Dorsett does an excellent job at honoring the man and revealing who he really was, to the extent that his family acknowledges this biography as the complete source for knowing and understanding this remarkable man. If you have been impacted by the writings of A.W. Toze, I encourage you to read the story of his life in A Passion For God by Lyle Dorsett.