©picture by scribbles (Marye McKenney)

Friday, March 28, 2014

The Road We Must Travel

Jesus walked this lonesome valley.
He had to walk it by Himself;
O, nobody else could walk it for Him,
He had to walk it by Himself.

We must walk this lonesome valley,
We have to walk it by ourselves;
O, nobody else can walk it for us,
We have to walk it by ourselves.

You must go and stand your trial,
You have to stand it by yourself,
O, nobody else can stand it for you,
You have to stand it by yourself.

Okay, I had a bit of a mental journey with this title, but that is not to take away from the overwhelming content of this book. In so many ways, this journey we call the Christian life is one we have to walk alone, but we have others we call brothers and sisters walking their journeys beside us.

With an all-star cast like Francis Chan, Bill Hybels, Mark Buchanan, Eugene Peterson, and more, this book is a must read for all Christians, but even more so, all Christians in leadership--whether in the church, at work, or in other organizations. There is so much good here, and it's all Biblically based. I do have to say that all my favorite chapters were written by Mark Buchanan. I related so well to his chapter on living simply and the cult of the next thing. We are remodeling our home and I'm going through things to see if we can lighten our "stuff" load. I have sewing stuff, my husband has backpacking, running, and hiking stuff, we both have fitness stuff; and the thing about stuff is that you don't own it, it owns you. This past week I took a van-load of stuff to the Salvation Army thrift store. I know I have more stuff to donate. I really need to do more "stuff" eradicating.

I was invited to this blog tour, and eagerly accepted--largely because of the line up of authors. I found some authors I'd never heard of before, and this is an excellent vehicle to become introduced to them. I loved becoming reacquainted with others I've loved for a long time.

The one chapter with the most lasting impact was "Sharpen Your Sixth Sense," by Bill Hybels. This chapter alone would justify the book being required reading for those in leadership within the local churches. It's a "fish or cut bait" type chapter that urges the leadership to have a vision, make decisions with that vision in mind, and then act on the decisions made. Bill cuts no slack, nor corners, in his exhortations here.

Gordon MacDonald's chapter on taking a Sabbath rest is so important due to the fact that we don't rest, we run from one activity to another, and we consider the change in activities the rest we need, but Gordon points out that we need time to do NOTHING, to take a true rest to recharge our mental, physical, and especially our spiritual batteries. It's too important to let that slide. God commanded it for a reason, and He knows us better than we know ourselves.

I give this book five stars, two thumbs up, and a break from "stuff" and "doing."

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