We're created with certain desires but don't always follow these longings for their intended purpose. We humans easily allow a subtle misdirection in seeking the satisfaction these desires were meant to offer. The author, a pastor; writes about times that even he was waylaid by the seduction of unfulfilling ways.
These out of whack desires include an addiction to approval, seeking achievements that won't satisfy, living for money, power, beauty, our own dreams for the future and even some religious behaviors. The enemy of our souls whispers lies about these God-given and good aspects of humanity. He easily detracts us into chasing warped ways to feel good about our lives.
Pastor Wilson shows how to recognize traps from the devil and then offers several effective spiritual disciplines to help us follow the true purpose of our desiresÃ¢â¬âto bring us to God. He urges us to believe that God is always with us, always loving us and always willing to give strength and mercy and goodness to us. God will meet the desires He planted with in us in the right way, as only He can do.
This book says what many other authors have written, but presents excellent information with a new approach.
I have to say, Empty Promises has to be hands down the best book I've read, that involves all aspects of live... in a Biblical way. Pete Wilson spoke to me right away in this book... as imagine it speaks to a lot of people quite quickly. He shares how in his own life he's struggled with worshiping idols. We all do at times. We tend to worship idols because of the fact that we were born to worship. God created us to have a desire for worship. It all goes wrong when we forget to worship God, first, and start worshiping something else... which is then called an idol.
In worshiping anything, besides God, we tend to think that these things will fill us up... but they do not... so they become our empty promises. Things like acceptance, achievement, power, beauty, fame, fortune, and... yes... even religion can become an empty promise. I love the part of the book where Pete talks about... "you are what you worship." This is so true and so simple.
This book helped me to realize that I was looking for acceptance that only my Heavenly Father could give. I was expecting imperfect people to fill that void of nonacceptance with the love I thought I needed. Humans will fail me. God will never let me down.
Lastly, I wanted to share about the empty promise of religion, that this book speaks on. I would say that this was my favorite chapter. Pete states, on page 112, that even in the early church, "religion always adds" constraints or rules to salvation.
His examples: (Page 112)
Jesus + being immersed in water = salvation
Jesus + doing Communion a certain way = salvation
Jesus + voting Republican (or Democrat) = salvation
Jesus + church membership = salvation
Get the point? "Religion not only complicates things; it also divides people." (Wilson, Pg. 113) It puts rules on what gets people into Heaven and what does not. It makes people who've made mistakes feel that they are unworthy of salvation. And that's not why Jesus came to this Earth.
If you've not read this book... let me strongly suggest that you do.
Ever been smacked in the face? Did it get your attention? Well, that is exactly what Empty Promises by Pete Wilson will do. A much needed eye opener for compromising Christians. We have systematically become a society of idol worshipers. We worship money, ourselves, relationships, our children, things, power, approval, and yes, even our religion! Pete Wilson explains how these idols ultimately take the place of God in our lives and how we become dependent on them. The validation we seek through earthly people and stuff leaves us longing for something more - something we can only receive from God himself. Serving our church, doing good deeds, or exhausting ourselves for our family, will not fill the void. If you are seeking peace from constant striving, Empty Promises will help lead you to sweet freedom. It reminds us that we need to step back and depend on God for validation. By following Pete Wilson's tips, you will be better equipped to deal with rejection, broken promises, and failures. We have lost ourselves in worshiping God's gifts, instead of realizing that God is the gift. Do you find yourself broken, face down in a puddle of tears, and finally ready to surrender? Are you ready to your idols with God's love and mercy? You will not know what love and mercy is until all of your idols come crashing down. There is a God, and we are not Him! The Hebrew word for "be still" literally means to "let go", so let go of empty promises and know that only He is God.
I was excited to read Pete Wilson's newest book Empty Promises, because I really enjoyed Plan B, his release a few years ago.
Empty Promises is all about idolatry and even if you don't think you struggle with idolatry, you probably do! It sneaks in there so subtly. Pete Wilson discusses several things that can be idols in one's life: achievement, power, approval, money, beauty, chasing a dream etc.
It is a very honest, practical book with lots of illustrations from Pete's own life and the folks he counsels and are his friends. I found myself often seeing my own flaws and issues and realized that I have made things, even good things, idols in my life when Jesus should hold that place.
I think this is a book that nearly everyone would enjoy. The writing style is candid and easy to read and he offers much hope and grace and a way out of this quest for "empty promises." I am confident this book will help many reflect and realize that the things they pursue to make them happy or content or liked or successful will only leave them feeling empty.
On page 22 Pete Wilson writes: " Jesus is continually inviting people to give up their idols and follow him. Jesus, and Jesus alone, is worthy of our whole devotion. He alone has the authority to forgive all of our sins. He alone has the wisdom to guide our whole lives. He alone leaves us invigorated rather than exhausted, at peace rather than anxious. He alone has the power to fill the gnawing inner emptiness we all experience and bring purpose to each and every day that he sees fit to grant us as a gift."
I received this book through Booksneeze Blogging program from the publisher. I was not required to give a favorable review.
Empty Promises is about our various attempts to pursue happiness and satisfaction in life by chasing after and striving for the material things or marks of status that we think will help us attain that personal fulfillment; and affirms that the peace, joy, contentment and completeness we are looking for can only be found in knowing Jesus Christ.
The book excels because of the honest transparency of the author, the high value placed on scripture, the detailed working in of applicable stories and analogies, and the fact the theme of the book is embedded in every page.
I think this book will really resonate with readers, and especially those who read Pete's blog daily or have watched his messages at crosspoint.tv