Friday, September 10, 2010

book review: "outlive your life" by max lucado

Chapter one asks this question: “we are given a choice…an opportunity to make a big difference during a difficult time. What if we did? What if we rocked the world with hope? Infiltrated all corners with God’s love and life?” And that’s the question woven throughout the rest of the book. Lucado talks about how society has slowly evolved into a “as little social interaction as possible” world. You can pay bills online, speak to a automated system when you call tech support - “You can cycle through a day of business and never say hello.” This makes it hard for us to reach out to people when we never see them. He talks about the man in Acts who’s sitting at a gate, asking for money. Peter and John have nothing to offer except for one thing: “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6). “Let’s be the people who stop at the gate. Let’s look at the hurting until we hurt with them. No hurrying past, turning away, or shifting of eyes. No pretending or glossing over. Let’s look at the face until we see the person.”

And while we’re called to help those who are hurting, we don’t need to have an audience when we do so either. “Bottom line: don’t make a theater production out of your faith. “Watch me! Watch me!” is a call used on the playground, not in God’s kingdom.” We need to be real with our faith instead of trying to put on a good show. “…when people enter a church to see God yet can’t see God because of the church, don’t think for a second that God doesn’t react.” We shouldn’t strive for anyone to see us when we feed the homeless or pray in church. God’s the only One who needs to see and He already does.

This was my first Max Lucado read but I really liked it. It’s a book that challenges you to stop living a comfortable faith. Why do we keep such an amazing thing like our salvation to ourselves? Why would we not want others to have this too? Lucado asks us to be active in our faith and actually strive to make a difference in the world. “Here’s a salute to a long life: goodness that outlives the grave, love that outlasts the final breath. May you live in such a way that your death is just the beginning of your life.”
*I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers and was not required to write a positive review.

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