Have you ever wondered why you are here, why God created you the way He did, in the place you are at, among the people that surround you? Have you ever felt like you were made for something, but couldn't put a handle on what, why, or how? Have you ever struggled with depression, doubt and self-worth? We all have and Pastor Rick Warren's book "The Purpose Driven Life" has helped millions of people find answers to those questions with Christ-focused precision, wisdom, sensitivity, and Biblical conviction.
"The Purpose Driven Life" is the best selling non-fiction hardback of all time. It has sold 32 million copies, been translated into 50 languages and people from 162 different countries have studied it. It was number one on all four major US booksellers lists in 2002 (and then made history by doing it again in March 2005 after hostage Ashley Smith persuaded a captor to release her by reading portions of it) and won the 2003 and 2004 ECPA Christian Book of the Year. (Stats taken from the news release by A. Larry Ross Communications which accompanied the copy of the book I received)
As soon as I saw this book come up on the list of options for me to review I jumped at it. Partially because I wanted to see the updated version, but mostly because it is a perfect excuse to once again recommend and sing the praises of a book that has touched my life so deeply.
I have appreciated Rick Warren's ministry for a long time, ever since I was first introduced to him through this book 10 years ago. Though we have never met, he has blessed me personally, developed me spiritually, and equipped my ministry many times over. So yes, I'm a fan, and I couldn't wait to get this book. It is the only book in my library of which I have extra copies to give away. I've read it cover to cover multiple times, taught it in small groups, and continuously pull it off the shelf to read portions of again. I can't think of another book, outside of the Bible, that God has used to shape me more.
Why Another Version?
When it came up in the review list my first thought was "It's been 10 years already? Wow, I'm old." My next thought was, "I wonder why they are releasing this again? Hasn't everyone read it by now? Isn't it still in every book store in the world?" My questions were answered by Pastor Rick on page 15 of the book where he says,
"Recently a 22-year-old named Mark connected with me through social media and asked â€˜How do I know what my purpose in life is?' As we chatted, I learned that his parents had read this book, but he had not read it, since he was only 12 years old when it was published. Every new generation must rediscover God's purposes for themselves."
"Aha!", I thought, "That makes so much sense!" I remember how much this book impacted me when I was 24, and I'm glad that I have a new version of this book to pass along.
The first impression I had of the new "The Purpose Driven Life: Expanded Edition" was how beautifully crafted, designed, printed and organized it is. It is a very beautiful book, just to look at. It is not only gorgeous, but savvy â€” this is how books should be written in the 21st century. Each day has a special QR code (specially designed pictures which a smart-phone can use to access a website) which link to short introductory videos, audio sermons (a full hour sermon for every day!), special notes and an online support community.
Originally this book had 40 days, but this new version has 42. Pastor Rick has added two days [the Envy Trap ("I must be like you to be happy") and the People-Pleaser Trap ("I must be liked by you to be happy")] which are meant to combat what he calls "two giant problems or traps that keep most people from living the life God planned for them to live." (quoted from the day 41 video introduction). These two chapters alone are worth the price of the book.
This is still a great book, and the new additions make it even better.
The one word I would use to describe this book is â€” "potent". Each day is full of wisdom, biblical insight, pastoral love, practical help and critical information that will help you move closer to Jesus and bring more joy into your life. There are literally paragraphs within this book that will change your life. There are phrases within this book that you will carry with you forever. If you let it, God can use this book to help you live out His purpose for you.
If you haven't read this book, get it and read it. If you've already read it, it's time to read it again.
In celebration of the 10th anniversary of "The Purpose Driven Life", Zondervan has re-released the best-selling book in an expanded version called "What On Earth Am I Here For?". Selling more than 32 million copies worldwide, "The Purpose Driven Life" has been transforming lives of people all over the world.
Ten years ago, Rick Warren became a household name for Christians all over the United States. His small group format became all the rage among Christian pastors and authors and "The 40 Days of Purpose" took small groups and classes to a deeper level.
The expanded version includes two additional chapters addressing "The Envy Trapâ€”I must be like you to be happy" and "The People-Pleaser Trapâ€”I must be liked by you to be happy." He is hoping for a new generation of readers to be among those whose lives were transformed by the first book.
With the inclusion of the new chapters as well as the QR codes at the beginning of each chapter that link to 42 three-minute videos featuring Warren, it is now possible for a deeper study and understanding of what the purpose-driven life is all about.
Beginning Warren's study on your life's purpose is a great way to start 2013. If you participated in the study 10 years ago, it might be time for a refresher. If you have never heard of this study and are searching for God's purpose for you, with this expanded version, it's the perfect time to start.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
It's been 10 years already? Yes, it has, and in that time another generation has grown up and is asking what life is all about. So it's time for an updated edition of this book.
The first thing I noticed when I received this book was the crisp clean design for the dust jacket. Much nicer, cleaner look than the earlier edition. Inside there's a new font, paper and page setup. Then there's those nifty little QR links. Yes, I did check them and they work just fine, as did the other links related to this study. It's all free, too. Except the book, of course. There are even listening guides to download if you want to follow along with the discussion that accompanies each week's focus. So far I am impressed with this anniversary edition.
The original text was maintained here with the addition of a couple of new chapters at the end. Those two chapters are helpful. They cover a couple of the major pitfalls that most of us know all too well, envy and people-pleasing. As with the rest of this study, Warren covers these topics well too, in my opinion.
The general topic, "What on earth am I here for?", covers a huge territory, but the author has approached it well and presents enough material so that by the time a person is finished with this study he'll have enough information and encouragement to examine his own life and formulate some plans that he'd liked to see accomplished in his own life. The student will also have a better idea of his own place in the grand scheme of things.
As I read through this book, I realized that those of us who have already been through the study could benefit from a refresher course, too. So this new edition isn't just for the younger generation. Maybe a checkup to see how we are doing with our lives?
Yes, I recommend this book. Do I agree with every word? No, and that isn't the point. Direction, focus, and a sense of my place in the world is. Warren has a book that makes you look and decide for yourself about those issues.
This book was provided by Zondervan in exchange for this review in conjunction with BookSneeze.