This is the time of year that we all look for a way to change our lives – actually people under the age of 25 seem to look for a way to change their lives between September and October. The rest of us have decided that January 1 is the change date. Everything can change – we can weigh less, act better, be more of what we were meant to be.
Interestingly, I usually find my ‘book of the year’ between December 15 and January 30. This year, I might have two, but I have found the first: True Religion. I picked up this book because I saw that Palmer Chinchen was looking to add staff to his church. I wanted to know what he was about.
This I can tell you: You can’t be part of Palmer’s church and not find a way to impact the world. 250 people went forward on one Sunday to commit themselves to leaving the US to make a difference overseas. Palmer was raised a Missionary Kid, and he flows with passion for the lost and hurting. He appears to really believe that we are Christ’s representatives and our lives should impact this world and make it better – Christ living in and through us to impact the world.
Consider this quote:
“I’ve boiled life down to two ways you can live. One, you can live optimistically and full of passion; or, two, you can live pessimistically and full of apathy. I’m convinced that if God has your heart, you will live with a passionate desire to give Him, this world, this life everything you’ve got.”
How can you not be inspired?
“Realize this: God created you with a beautiful, perfect purpose in mind. He intends for you to live a life of significance, a life that impacts people and changes lives, cities, and nations.”
These last three years have been significant in our family – but they have been hard. I have discovered that stress, sorrow, more stress, and uncertainty can cause us to pull into ourselves. We become what we never wanted to be – a person who is existing.
I know that these have not been easy times for many of you. With recession comes job loss, job changes, and people seem to be devalued. Life is no longer about thriving, it is about surviving. Yet, Stephen (the follower of Jesus in Acts that was stoned for his faith) is a good model for us – even under intense pressure and rocky times (pun intended), he managed to impact people for Jesus.
If you want your life to count, I strongly recommend that you start with “True Religion”. Palmer doesn’t just write this, he lives it. The book is full of inspiring stories, and glimpses into a world where You are needed to make a difference. I don’t know what God has called you to, but I know that He has called you to make a difference.
If you feel pretty hopeless at that thought (and I know that when you are caught on the hamster wheel, words of inspiration feel like electric shock therapy), you need to develop new brain pathways toward a life that makes a difference. Along with your daily devotions, read Palmer’s book and see what God does in your heart and mind.
You can buy True Religion on Amazon.com.