Friday, September 10, 2010

BEEtween the Pages: Outlive Your Life by Max Lucado

"Here's a salute to a long life: goodness that outlives the grave, love that outlasts the final breath. May you live in such a way that your death is just the beginning of your life."

~Excerpt from Max Lucado's Outlive Your Life~

What if we as Christians were to follow in the footsteps of those in the early Christian church described in the first twelve chapters of Acts? What if we "rocked the world with hope? Infiltrated all corners with God's love and life?" In Max Lucado's newest book, Outlive Your Life, he challenges Christians to do just this. The great works carried out by those in the early church were not intended to occur only once in history but rather to extend over the centuries and generations to follow. Lucado prays: Do it again, Jesus. Do it again.

In the first chapter of this book, Lucado gives readers a snapshot of the heartbreaking problems and issues many face in our world today. He writes:

These are devastating times: 1.75 billion people are desperately poor, 1 billion hungry, millions are trafficked in slavery, and pandemic diseases are gouging entire nations. Each year nearly 2 million children are exploited in the global commercial sex trade and in the five minutes it took you to read these pages, almost ninety children died of preventable diseases. More than half of all Africans do not have access to modern health facilities. As a result, 10 million of them die each year from diarrhea, acute respiratory illness, malaria, and measles. Many of those deaths could be prevented by one shot.

Lucado recognizes the complexities involved in solving these global issues, but he believes that "God has given this generation, our generation, everything we need to alter the course of human suffering." In the chapters to follow, Lucado gives examples of believers throughout history--from those in the early Christian church to those today--who have outlived their lives. He also provides readers with practical ways they, too, can outlive their lives, including opening your door and your heart to others, doing good quietly, standing up for the have-nots, remembering who holds you, not writing anyone off, and praying first and most.

This book ranks toward the top of my list of the best books I've read this year. It stirred within me a deep yearning to seek God's direction on how I, too, can outlive my life. As I read this book, I pondered on how many times I have allowed fear, complacency, and busyness to keep me in my clamshell and prevent me from reaching out to those in need. The believers in the early Christian church showed us how to "let God unshell" us and use us to love and help others. Do it again, Jesus. Do it again.

I highly recommend this book to all readers. It will change your life. :0)

For more information about this book, please visit Thomas Nelson's website.

Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of reviewing it.

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