Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Cause Within You by Matthew Barnett

I stumbled upon this book in the library and I found it a welcome diversion.  Matthew shares how he discovered his cause from lessons and tips that he drew from his life experiences.  As a result, the book is an engaging read.  Real stories drawn from his background in building a large ministry in Los Angeles give almost every chapter a captivating foundation into the ideas that Matthew is trying to convey.

The author's enthusiasm for for his material is contagious.  Sometimes its hard to remember that not everyone is cut out to be and do exactly as he has done.  The book has some insightful gems that really hit home with me.

Similar to The Purpose Driven Life, this book is written from a Christian perspective.  While it doesn't tell you what your specific 'cause' is, it offers advice and encouragement on how to find it, and make it bloom into something great.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren

The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren has sold millions of copies - it is a very popular book.  It has been recently rebranded What On Earth am I Here For?  It originally had 40 reasonably short chapters.  The new edition has 2 new chapters.  The book is formatted/written as a devotional.  I avoided this book for many years, but eventually bought it and worked through it in 40 days, journaling my thoughts about the chapter I had read that day.

The book essentially answers the question 'What am I here for?' from a Christian perspective.  Having grown up in a Christian home, and wrestled with that question most of my life (it seems), I definitely found myself challenging some of the points made in the book...  or they challenged me.

I found the book very 'matter of fact', 'this is simply the way it is', black and white, and at times (as evidenced in my journal entries) I struggled with that.  I find life much more messy, in your face, and abstract.

Getting that off my chest, this is a great book for grasping the Christian foundations of what we are all here on earth for.  In the book, Rick outlines 5 core purposes that God created us all for.  He says 'Without God, life has no purpose, and without purpose, life has no meaning.  Without meaning, life has no significance or hope.'   If you are looking for mean, significance, and hope, then this book is for you.  It will not give you definitive answers like 'the life purpose for your giftings and personality type is to move to Perth, Australia and start a ministry with the street people.'  It will give you a great foundation to consider who and what your life is about.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Callings by Gregg Levoy

Callings, written by Gregg Levoy is a expansive, well researched tome that, quite frankly, was one of those books that I needed to read right when I found it.  It is so full of good content and anecdotes that I'm taking my time going through it so I can digest it all.  Younger readers might find it a bit academic,  however it will certainly open their minds to a broader world of literature, myth, and scientific study (mainly physiology).

Mr. Levoy includes chapters related to travel, health, dreams, personal history, fear, and much more to weave together an exceptional piece of literature on finding and following an authentic life.

I picked my copy up from the library and discovered about halfway through the book that the last 20 pages or so were not paginated correctly (and as a result, they are out of order).  I thought this was a bit ironic considering the book's title.  I subsequently asked the library if I could buy the book they declined.  I went to a used book store to see if I could get a copy there and apparently they get asked for it quite often.

Callings is a medium 300+ page read (small print).  I'd highly recommend it.  5 out of 5 from me.