Running on Empty: Contemplative Spirituality for Overachievers  -     By: Fil Anderson
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Running on Empty: Contemplative Spirituality for Overachievers

WaterBrook Press / 2005 / Paperback

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Product Description

Unfortunately, the church has often bought into the "doing" mindset by pushing to maximize every believer's productivity for God. If you have fallen for the soul-killing lie that doing more is what matters, Running on Empty will help you stop living for God and start living with him. Begin the journey from achieving to being, from self-importance to God-importance, from noise and hurry to quietness and rest. You'll learn how to practice silence, solitude, prayer, listening, Scripture meditation, and other spiritual disciplines to experience the deeper joy of being with your caring, loving God.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 224
Vendor: WaterBrook Press
Publication Date: 2005
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.5 (inches)
ISBN: 1400071038
ISBN-13: 9781400071036
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Learn to live with God instead of for God.

Sometimes the only way to get a new life is by running your old one completely into the ground.

Fil Anderson had accomplished more for God than most of his contemporaries, but his worn-out body housed an empty soul. His frenetic pace of ministry had earned him just one thing: greater pressure to do even more. He had fallen for the soul-killing lie that doing more for God would give his life meaning. Then the godly admonition of a spiritual director set this burned-out believer on a life-saving spiritual path.

This powerful story of a reawakened soul can be the story of every person who has pursued spiritual productivity over intimacy with God and come up empty. It’s the story of reclaiming your soul and finding a home in the center of God’s relentless love. It’s the journey from self-importance to God-importance.

The solution is not greater achievements for the kingdom of God. It’s time to stop living for God and start living with God.

In this candid and achingly authentic book, Fil Anderson shares the healing insights that restored his spiritual compass and guided him back to God … the God who specializes in filling empty souls.

“To the harried and the unharried, I pray that this book will minister to your heart in the profound way that it has blessed mine.” —Brennan Manning


From the Hardcover edition.

Author Bio

Fil Anderson is executive director of Journey Resources, based in Greensboro, North Carolina. He’s a frequent speaker at conferences, offers individual spiritual direction, and directs retreats and workshops around the country (for more information, visit www.journeyresources.org). A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and Fuller Theological Seminary, he also completed the Graduate Program in Spiritual Guidance at the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation in Bethesda, Maryland. Fil worked with Young Life for twenty-five years, serving as area director and regional director before becoming national director of training.


From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

“Running On Empty is more than a book title; it has become a way of life. But there is another, much better way. Fil Anderson points us to it with grace, thoughtfulness, and style. Read him and be filled again.”
–John Ortberg, author of Everybody’s Normal Till You Get to Know Them

“This book is for those who have found it easier to take care of our schedule than to take care of our soul. For the unfortunate majority who keep running because we don’t know how to stop, Fil Anderson provides a compelling roadmap home where we can finally stop and snuggle up in the arms of God.”  
–Michael Yaconelli, author of Messy Spirituality: God’s Annoying Love for Imperfect People and Dangerous Wonder: The Adventure of Childlike Faith

“Fil Anderson invites you to discover the difference between believing that God is love and experiencing the love of God. As the author makes clear, it’s the difference in life and death for your soul.”
–Craig Barnes, author of When God Interrupts

Running on Empty is an oasis for those who allow a life of busyness to drive us toward emptiness. Fil Anderson’s honesty and vulnerability can lead us all toward the One who fills us eternally.”
–Denny Rydberg, president of Young Life

“What a fresh voice Fil Anderson brings to all of us who struggle to be with Jesus, and not just do for him. This book draws me back to the wonder of the gospel–which is the best recommendation I could give any book.”
–Paula Rinehart, author of Strong Women, Soft Hearts and Sex and the Soul of a Woman

“Fil Anderson has written a deeply personal story of his own walk with God. In doing so, he is brave and caring enough to share with us many practical ways to deepen our own walk.”
–Bob Buford, founder of Leadership Network and author of Halftime: Changing Your Game Plan from Success to Significance 

Running on Empty is written by someone who can recognize emptiness because he has known both emptiness and fullness. This book is inspiring and yet practical, anecdotal and yet big-picture, traditional and yet contemporary American. Enjoy its fullness.”
–Richard Rohr, O.F.M., Center for Action and Contemplation, Albuquerque, New Mexico

“Unless we learn the lessons in this book, we will dry up in building God’s kingdom. Fil Anderson shows us how to keep our own souls refreshed. A must read for all those in ministry!”
–Rev. John Yates and Susan Alexander Yates, co-authors of Building a Home Full of Grace and Character Matters: Raising Kids with Values That Last

“With simplicity and integrity, Fil Anderson poses questions and offers challenges and possibilities to assist readers in the exploration of their own stories. One gets the sense of Fil, the spiritual director, standing at the door praying for readers as they enter the sacred space of their exploration.”
–Rose Mary Dougherty, SSND, author of Group Spiritual Direction: Community for Discernment, editor of The Experience of Group Spiritual Direction

This book is destined to become a classic for those who are serious about learning to love Christ and wanting to know they are loved by Him.
–Howard Dayton, CEO of Crown Financial Ministries

“If you’re caught in the rat race, at the edge of burnout, or even too busy to notice, Running on Empty offers help and hope. Here is a Christian response to the drivenness of modern American culture, a response that offers both inspiration and down-to-earth wisdom.”
–Gerald May, author of Will and Spirit and Addiction and Grace

Running on Empty offers hope that we can learn to accept the love of God in our brokenness. Our busyness can be quieted and our souls can learn to be at peace in the face of God’s unrestrained love.”
–Devlin Donaldson, The Elevation Group, co-author of Pinocchio Nation

“Fil Anderson provides fellow travelers with practical ideas and tools for walking the journey with and toward Christ. This deeply personal book gives believers like me hope of moving from religious compulsions to a fresh relationship with the Lord.”
–Tom Wilson, president/CEO of Leadership Network


From the Hardcover edition.

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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    June 21, 2007
    Jennifer Ayers
    This book spoke to me in a unique way. I highly recommend it to anyone suffering from the overachieving mentality. Learn how to practice spiritual disciplines and be released from the bondage of "doing it all." I love the way the author writes. I laughed, cried, and truly identified with his self-reflection.
  2. 2 Stars Out Of 5
    May 24, 2007
    David R. Bess
    Anderson provides an easy-to-read book here, giving anyone who has an overloaded, exhausting schedule sympathy and understanding. He describes the problems of emotional exhaustion very well, whetting the appetite of the reader for answers. Sadly, in the second half of the book on recovery he doesn't provide them well. He describes solitude, prayer, the Bible, spiritual direction, sorrow and joy as traits a person should have to recover from and to avoid emotional exhaustion, but doesn't relate them to one another. He also shows the reader where he needs to be, but does very little to help him get there.I've read much better books on emotional/spiritual exhaustion. Unless you are a fan of the author, I'd encourage you to pass on this one. The title is catchy, but it is all downhill from there.
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