Customer Reviews: Wild Goose Chase: Reclaim the Adventure of Pursuing God
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When last we heard from Mark Batterson, he was chasing a lion down a pit on a snowy day. Now he's chasing a wild goose. Evidently, there's a lot of chasing going on in Mark's neck of the hood.

Most of us think a wild goose chase is, as Mark puts it, "a purposeless endeavor without a defined destination." Mark thinks otherwise. He notes that one of the Celtic Christian images of the Holy Spirit was An Geadh Glas, "the Wild Goose." Chasing that Wild Goose is anything but a purposeless endeavor, even though we don't know the defined destination at the outset of the chase.

Chasing the Wild Goose pulls you out of "inverted Christianity." "Instead of following the Spirit," Mark writes, "we invite the Spirit to follow us. Instead of serving God's purposes, we want Him to serve our purposes." Such a form of Christianity is sinful--displacing God from the center and putting our selves there instead--but it is also deadly boring. Mark deploys the image of a caged animal at the zoo to describe the life of inverted Christianity. The natural beauty, freedom, and power of biblical Christianity gets locked away behind safe, comfortable, and predictable bars. If we want to chase the Goose, we have to get out of our cages.

In Wild Goose Chase, Mark identifies six cages inverted Christians get locked inside: responsibility, routine, assumptions, guilt, failure, and fear. He devotes one chapter to each of the cages and uses one character from the Bible to illustrate spiritual uncaged living. Nehemiah shows us how to live a "responsibly irresponsible life," one that is infused with God's passion. Moses shows us how to break out of our spiritual routines. Abraham shows us how to overcome the antisupernatural assumptions that place limits on what God can do in our lives. Peter shows us how to let God's grace overcome our guilt and lead to a life of gratitude. Paul shows us how apparent failures are actually providential opportunities to spread the gospel. And Jonathan shows us to live on offense, rather than defense. Mark also peppers each chapter with stories from lives of contemporary people who are chasing the Goose.

One of Mark's greatest virtues as a writer is a Rick Warren-like ability to take a simple concept and give it practical legs. I have to confess that the genre of In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day and Wild Goose Chase is not a genre I read a lot in anymore because it has tendencies toward the formulaic and simplistic. Mark's books are neither of those things. Don't be fooled by his short paragraphs, self-deprecatory humor, or obsession with medial front cortex illustrations. This book, and its predecessor, challenged me a deep, personal level. And they will do the same thing for you.

I highly recommend this book. I gave it to my associate. My family members will be reading it. And I'll be promoting it at my church. If you're tired of dull, passionless, routinized Christianity, read this book! And chase the Goose!
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on August 25, 2008
Wild Goose Chase by Mark Batterson is like one of those really good sermons that make you squirm in your pew with conviction. Batterson wants to see the end of complacent Christians who want only to live comfortably. He encourages readers to listen for the Holy Spirit and start living on the edge in accordance with God's purpose. He uses several anecdotes to make his case and Scripture to back it up. It's' hard to put into words just how powerful this book was for me. I squirmed through most of the chapters, and it has earned the rare permanent spot on my bookshelf. It's the kind of book that I will read year after year to remind myself of what I should be doing and to measure my progress. Are you ready for your faith to be stirred and shaken out of its boring routine? Read Batterson and chase the Wild Goose. You can't help but be changed.
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on August 23, 2008
Batterson has done it again! I read "Wild Goose Chase" from cover to cover without putting it down. Every chapter made me smile, made me think, and made me pause to reflect on God's heart.

I especially enjoyed Mark's perspective and insight on well known bible stories. Although I've read about Moses, Abraham, Jonathan, Peter, and Paul countless times, Batterson retold the old stories in a new light.

Even though Mark flawlessly kept my attention, I found myself pausing many times to pray.

Mark's language and images have a way of awakening my dormant faith and dreams. I will unquestionably revisit this book.
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on September 24, 2013
I chose this for a small group study. What Mark writes is not just for 20-somethings, but has spoken to your Senior group. We never get too old for God to use us.
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on August 15, 2012
I read quite a few books over the summer, ones that kept interrupting my reading of Mark Batterson's Wild Goose Chase, which was pretty good, except it didn't say much that I hadn't read in Erwin McManus's Unleashed or David Platt's Radical, or the one I read more recently, A. W. Tozer's The Pursuit of God. I'd picked Batterson's from the list at Blogging for Books, where I get free books in exchange for reviews, because I'd been interested in reading about the Holy Spirit, except Wild Goose Chase is more about living a life of adventure following the lead of the Spirit, whom the Celtic Christians, Batterson explains, referred to as "the Wild Goose." To learn more about the Spirit, I'll have to read the next book on my reading list: Francis Chan's Forgotten God.

Since it took me awhile to work through Wild Goose Chase, not because it was long -- it wasn't, it just wasn't a great read -- I had to go back and review my highlights and notes. Batterson does have some inspiring things to say about our breaking free from the cages we lock ourselves in that prevent us from chasing the Holy Spirit. He writes of the cages of responsibility, routine, assumptions, guilt, failure, and fear. He encourages grabbing hold of vision for our marriages, our families, our careers, our lives. God has much he wants to do through us and in us. Do our goals -- if we have any -- reflect a desire to follow after the Spirit, or are they selfish, bent toward our own needs and desires? We have to be careful, those vision-oriented, goal-driven among us, because we can easily miss God's taking us off our course to get us to move on his.

"The Wild Goose chase begins when we come to terms with our greatest responsibility: pursuing the passions God has put in our heart." --BATTERSON

I think I need a reminder every other month or so that God is calling me to a life of adventure, because I so easily fall into routines that are comfortable, one of the consequences of which is that the angels assigned to protect me as a follower of Jesus become like Tess's security detail in Guarding Tess:

"I wonder if some of us are living such safe lives that not only are we bored, but so are our guardian angels." --BATTERSON

I want to learn to become more attune to the Holy Spirit's leading, because, as Batterson points out, it's a "moment-by-moment sensitivity to the Holy Spirit that turns life into an everyday adventure." Again, in Wild Goose Chase, Batterson doesn't offer much in the way of helping us to become more sensitive to the Spirit. Hopefully, Francis Chan's book will help.

I recommend Wild Goose Chase, though perhaps Tozer's A Pursuit of God is a better place to start for those wanting to chase after the Wild Goose, if only because Tozer is more succinct and a better writer of prose. Either way, you can't go wrong.
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on June 8, 2015
I'm having to unlearn everything I thought I knew to be true. The author makes so clear anything and everything you want to know about the Holy Spirit's purpose in our lives. Never have known anyone, with such certainty, live out their purpose in life. He explains so well how anyone can get there. I took notes. I think he's the best author yet. I couldn't put the book down. You may know about the Holy Spirit, after this book you'll know him personally. It doesn't get any more up front and personal than to be introduced to the one who lives inside you. Excellent. My thanks to Mr Batterson.
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on September 9, 2013
This is the most down to earth description of the nature and work of the Holy Spirit in Christianity. Most of the studies previously read are either vague or step away from the real experience of encounter with how God is working in us. Be ready for finding a fresh new insight on the subject. I have recommended this book to quite a number of people, and have given copies to other friends and neighbors. It will stay on my reading shelf so I can continue to look through it.
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on January 29, 2016
I love this book! It came into my life at a time when I took on a difficult, new job and was second-guessing myself. This book confirmed to me that God intends life to be an adventure, and most worthwhile things are hard. I check out Mark Batterson's books at the library, and I always end up buying them for my own collection so I can highlight and mark them up.
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on June 27, 2016
Mark Batterson is a gifted writer who draws you into a journey of pursuing God at a deeper level. He highlighted areas in our lives that could be distracting us from the incredible adventures God has waiting for us! This book is a stirring call to become all God destined you to be! If you are bored with your walk- read this!!! Be awakened out of your apathy and start to really live!
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on May 24, 2015
This was a great book for me at a time of transition. It was recommended to a couple people in my home fellowship and I am so glad I read it when I did. Mark talks clearly about 6 cages of entrapment to avoid. I identified what I needed to shuck and side step and am moving on the greater things and not lingering in backward looking pining away. I bought this copy for my adult son and he is enjoying it too. Who doesn't have occasional sudden changes to maneuver? Great book to keep on the shelf. The friend who loaned it has two copies. One to loan and one to keep handy.
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