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Good to Great in God's Eyes: 10 Practices Great Christians Have in Common / Revised - eBook
Baker Books / 2012 / ePub
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Jim Collins's Good to Great became a bestselling business book because it studies the characteristics of great businesses. But should Christians want to become great in the eyes of the world? In Good to Great in God's Eyes, bestselling author Chip Ingram shows how Christians can honor God with lives of great faith and excellent work. Believers become great in God's eyes by applying the 10 common characteristics of great Christians:
• think great thoughts
• read great books
• pursue great people
• dream great dreams
• pray great prayers
• take great risks
• make great sacrifices
• enjoy great moments
• empower great people
• develop great habits
Using Scripture, personal stories, and examples from Christians who left a lasting legacy, Ingram offers practical steps for becoming great in all areas of life, in spiritual growth, family, relationships, and career.
In the wake of the phenomenal success of the secular business book, Good to Great by Jim Collins, about successful companies and their practices, we now have a tribute book on that same topic, only focused on individuals and presented from a Christian perspective. In Good to Great in God's Eyes: Ten Practices Great Christians Have in Common, author Chip Ingram offers pragmatic, if not innovative, advice on how to make one's life more productive, happy, and fulfilling. Often, the material is drawn from a very personal viewpoint, as in chapter two, called "Read Great Books." The recommended books in that chapter are primarily those books that Ingram, himself, has enjoyed and felt were advantageous to his personal and career growth.
The lead chapter is perhaps the most valuable, underscoring the Old Testament message of, "As a man thinks in his heart, so is he" (Proverbs 23:7). Ingram talks about the negative effects of modern news broadcasts, seductive advertising, and depressing online material. He refers to Paul's advice about the renewing of the mind and quotes Scripture in regard to a list of positive concepts with the admonition to "think about these things" (Philippians 4:8) There is nothing original here from Ingram, but it is valid nonetheless.
Another chapter deals with finding positive people in our lives to have as mentors. It spends a lot of time on the topic of forgiving our parents for not being perfect, praising them more for whatever they did right, and moving on with life. (I'll confess, I sat down and wrote my mother a long letter after finishing that chapter.)
My personal favorite is chapter six, which talks about becoming a risk-taker. The examples of Esther before the king (Esther 5), Peter stepping out on the water (Matthew 14:22-33), and Paul as a convert going back into the Jewish temple (Acts 21), are radical steps of faith. The dangers were obvious, but the results were staggering. Ingram tells us to take the leap of faith, to get out of our comfort zones, to let God do His work through us. It is both scary and exuberating.
Don't expect to find breakthrough concepts here, especially in a book that confesses in its very title that it is emulating someone else's idea. Still, there are truths here, and they are organized systematically into good reading order. Good to Great in God's Eyes reminds readers of things worth being nudged about. Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book Previews.com
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