Thursday, August 19, 2010
Do not read this book. I repeat -- Do NOT read this book...unless you want your life turned upside down.
I read this entire book yesterday. And yes, I worked an eight-hour day as well. Someone call the Guiness World Record people because I think this may have been a personal record for me. I've never, EVER finished a book in a day. Unless it was Dr. Seuss or Berinstain Bears.
When you go to this book's website, you are immediate confronted with this question:
WHAT IS JESUS WORTH TO YOU?
Just like that. In big bold capital letters. And here is what follows:
"Do you believe that Jesus is worth abandoning everything for? Do you believe him enough to obey him and to follow him wherever he leads, even when the crowds in our culture -maybe even our churches- turn the other way?"
In Radical, David Platt invites you to encounter what Jesus actually said about being his disciple, and then obey what you have heard. He challenges you to consider with an open heart how we have manipulated a God-centered gospel to fit our human-centered preferences. With passionate storytelling and convicting biblical analysis, Platt calls into question a host of comfortable notions that are common among Christ's followers today. Then he proposes a radical response: live the gospel in ways that are true, filled with promise, and ultimately world changing.
That doesn't even begin to scratch the surface.
I'm going to tell you, I have a love-hate relationship with this book. Why? Because I love and hate every word of this book. It's doused with conviction. Every word stings hard and then wakes you up to the reality that fills our world today. It leaves your brain thinking, "Are you kidding? I can't do that!" And all the while, your hands and feet are set in motion to shake the world by a force that is too strong to resist.
What is that force? It's faith, conviction, the Holy Spirit. It's the incredible urgency that you feel when you truly understand what we are called to do and you truly see the physical and spiritual need around the world.
And this isn't the first time I've heard of this "Radical Experiment" thing. I've been hearing about it throughout the last year. Every Sunday from the pulpit. I've even participated in it. I leave worship with such a burden that I feel like I should sell my car right there and walk the 20 miles to home because what good is me having a car when there are people around the world that are dying, inside and out?
So don't read this book. I'm begging you. Don't.
You'll find none of the things that you think matter in this world - money, fame, success -- none of them matter when there are 4.5 billion people out there who haven't even heard the name of Jesus Christ.
None of them know the love of a Father who works everything out for the good of those who love him. A Savior who looks at us in our sin and calls us, "My beloved," because the eyes of Jesus see no sin. A Lord who rules over all, protects us from all and is just in all his ways. A God who desires to see his glory and his name be exalted above anything throughout the universe because to desire anything else would be to deny the very nature of who he is.
So just stay away from the book.
This book leaves you broken -- for yourself, your loves ones and people you don't even know. It lights a fire in your soul that urges you to give up everything -- for some, material possessions; for some, entire careers; for some, both -- for the cause of Christ.
We all, at some point in ourselves, walk around wondering what our purpose in life is. We read book after book, seek advice, rack our brains and still come up with no answer. This book says that everything you ever wanted to know about what your purpose in life is supposed to be is found in the Bible. Specifically in Matthew 28:19-20.
"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
So if you want your entire life flipped upside down, be my guest.
If not, don't read it.
I dare you.