I have written down the years quite a bit about Rick Warren and this year met him and heard him teach a group of 100 or so Vicars. Reading 'The purpose driven life' deeply impacted my life when I read it over a decade ago. For more on PDL see a great interview here.
I found Rick Warren to be a warm, generous, wise and kind man. Not more than two weeks after his time in London with us we heard that his son Matthew had committed suicide. This was both shocking and deeply sad and was reported across the world's media. Since then Rick and his wife have been in mourning and processing the horrific death (he shot himself) of their beloved son.
He returned to the pulpit a couple of weeks ago and preached this message:
How we're getting through
You may also want to listen to 'When your world collapses'
The central message is one of hope and our need of it and how it is found in the gospel. The message is that God's plan is bigger than your immediate circumstances or seemingly devastating trials and with Jesus you can come though.
Maybe you too are in a season of testing and 'shock'.
-We all at times get sick
-We all have people we love who will at some point die
-We all have marriages that go through tests
-We all experience loss
-We will all face mental health issues in ourselves and/or others
-We all have unexpected events that shake and shock us (if you haven't yet you will)
-We all have things that go wrong or jobs that we lose or opportunities/things we long for that pass us by
-We all have seasons when 'Why' questions surround us
-We all have prayers that remain unanswered
-We all have the temptation at times to give in to hopelessness
-We all, each one of us, desperately need hope.
I hope these messages offer you some hope and encouragement and if you are in a good place use them to prepare you for the times of difficulty that are inevitable and coming.