Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Thrive: Digging Deep, Reaching Out

Thrive: Digging Deep, Reaching Out by Mark Hall and Tim Luke arrived at a perfect time for me. I had been reading and studying the Scriptures for years, and was ready to dig deeper and learn how to use the information I was receiving from The Word. But sometimes it is difficult to know where to begin. Mark Hall has a way of helping me understand how to dig deep into God's Word; not just to gather information, but to see how the Word applies to me and how my life should look as I read the Word. Hall begins by explaining how life seems to work for the majority of people: we go from task to task, hoping for things to get better, rushing through things looking for the elusive thing that will satisfy us. We tend to gaze fondly into the future, as if life will be better when we get there. However, we are missing the present. God meant for us to enjoy life every day, not just when things are working out the way we want them to. Hall explains a drawing he created of a tree, with its branches reaching high into the sky, and its roots digging deep into the ground. In order for us to thrive daily, we need to dig deep. Our roots need to be in our relationship with God and Jesus. We need to understand who God is, and who we are in Him. Then we use this root system to allow us to reach out to others, to make God known to the world. Every moment matters. In our daily lives, we need to glorify God. We do this by spending time with God, in His Word, in prayer, in reflection. And then taking the things He speaks into our lives and sharing them with others. We are commissioned to share Jesus with the world. If we only have roots, but no reach, we are out of balance. The spiritual disciplines of worship, prayer, and the study of Scripture are essential, but on their own, they are missing balance. We also need community. We are to share our lives with other believers. And then we are to glorify God by knowing Him and making Him known to others. This book offers personal stories and practical ways to apply this knowledge. Hall writes as if he is writing a letter to a friend. He wants his readers to know the joy of a relationship with God, and how to thrive in this life by living for Him. Overall, the book offers great insight and is a tool to return to over and over as we read Scripture and apply it to our lives. I would recommend this book to anyone feeling a need to dig deeper or unsure of how to reach out to others. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers 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.”

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