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The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People Paperback – May 5, 2015
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'John Ortberg takes Jesus' call to abundant living seriously, joyfully, and realistically. He believes human transformation is genuinely possible, and he describes its process in sane and practical ways.' -- Richard J. Foster --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
The heart of Christianity is about transformation---about a God who isn't just concerned with our 'spiritual lives,' but who wants to impact every aspect of living. It's realizing that God meets us not in a monastery but on Main Street, and that all of ordinary, daily life has the potential to be lived as if Jesus himself were the one living it. Now expanded to include an added chapter on prayer and discussion questions designed to help small groups make the journey together, The Life You've Always Wanted offers modern perspectives on the ancient path of the spiritual disciplines. But this is more than just a book about things we should do if we want to be good Christians. It's a road map toward true transformation, compelling because it starts not with ourselves but with the object of our journey---Jesus Christ. Paved with humor and sparkling anecdotes, The Life You've Always Wanted is an encouraging and challenging approach to a Christian life that's worth living. Life on the edge that fills our ordinary world with new meaning, hope, change, and a joyous, growing closeness to Christ. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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So, I don't have a single negative thing to say about this book. I'm biased, I admit it. But, I'd recommend this to any person who feels burdened by the guilt of 'failing' at spiritual discipline or who feels lost looking for ways to grow. This refreshing book is a map leading to practical, actually doable disciplines. It opens your eyes to the freedom that is found in Christ from burdensome spiritual transformation. It points the way to life enjoying Jesus, following Him as well as you can, and turning around to see that you've come farther than you ever thought possible.
He describes the life you've always wanted, and it really is.
"Because by and large we do not expect people to experience ongoing transformation, we are not led to question whether perhaps the standard prescriptions for spiritual growth being given in the church are truly adequate to lead people into a transformed way of life."
Chapter 3 gets the focus right, it's about training more than trying. No one questions the wisdom of taking regular physical exercise if you want a healthy body, so what about regular spiritual exercise if you want a healthy spirit? Sounds simple!
The remaining chapters one by one present practices such as celebration, prayer, reflection and confession.
I plan to make use of this book and the included study guide as I lead small communities. The communities we plant out are only ever going to be as deep as the communities we are part of.
I have the kindle version, which is very well set out and includes a helpful study guide.
Also though this book was nothing short of awesome for me, I believe it was because God allowed for it to be and used this book to speak to me in many ways.
This book feels like someone read my mind, and put it in a book... either my thoughts or issues that I ponder.
The study guide that is INCLUDED in the back of the book was SO thought provoking. I know this sounds weird but these were Tuff questions (good tuff) and they required me to #1 dig deep into the scripture discussion, and #2 dig deep into myself.
This book and it's included study guide have been an emotional self discovery.
Every time I read it, and answer questions I find myself looking up and saying, "WOW God, Thank you!!!"
Ortberg talks about some pretty deep issues just within the first two chapters... Our disappointment in ourselves, the way we measure our spiritual fitness, the way we live and try to measure others by.
I would hope that if you pick up this book... and I would HIGHLY recommend it. That the Lord allows for it to speak to you the way that it has to me.
I think this would make a fabulous small or large group study book. It gives a great opportunity by the discussion questions for those in the group to get to know each other better, more deeply. This book is a great discussion.