Many years ago now I spent 40 days reading The Purpose Driven Life. It has one of the best first lines I've ever read.
"It's not about you".
I commend you spending 40 days in it.
It's life changing (Lent?)
It was my first introduction to Rick Warren. I then came across him again at TED and he greatly impressed me with his faith, his peaceful honesty and his amazing generosity and global influence.
The P.E.A.C.E plan is incredible in it's ambition and vision.
""As we turn from being an audience into an army... from consumers into contributors, from spectators into participators... it will change the world." - Rick Warren
I then listened to Piper explain why he had asked him to speak at the Pastors conference (about which there was such a hoo ha).
Then I listened to the brilliant talk called A Battle for you mind.
From it, I was stunned by lots of things but most by the incredible amount of reading he does. It's astounding. He has read both widely and deeply. If he were to sum up why Saddleback has been so influential and why he has had such an impact on the Church and the world he might sum it up like this:
"Actually, to be honest I read a lot"
Leaders are readers.
Maybe you don't think you are a leader.
Start then by being a reader.
You will be soon.
Something in me told me this man has some really helpful things to teach me and inspire me with.
Then, a couple of months ago, I discovered his podcast and this one on 'How to stay mentally fresh' really really blessed me.
Now, as people sometimes say about this blog- you like Americans. I know I do. Sorry. I love Americans and America. I love their passion, energy, their fly-fishing, their hamburgers, their very cold beer, The West Wing and the way they overcook their bacon. I do. I admit it. I like a lot of things 'American'.
I am also intrigued by Warren who is one of the most influential pastors in the world.
He has such a heart for Pastors and their wellbeing as witnessed by Pastors.com
In this podcast, he chats about reading and books with James Emery White and a Prof Richard Mouw from Fuller. They share wisdom on why read, what to read, reading diversely and what books have inspired them. It a simply wonderful way to spend an hour in the car or on a walk especially if you love the Church, love reading and love wise advice.
The one book they commend more than any other is this one.
Listening to this will inspire you to read. I'm hopeful and prayerful of it. Maybe it might start you reading. Maybe it might compel you to stop doing something so you can read.
Maybe start with The Purpose Driven Life. 3 Pages a day. You can manage that.
It'll be the best £2.26 you ever spend.
Read and then read some more.
Don't miss this podcast.