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Posted March 02, 2008
By fearfulsymmetry,


Rick Warren's Purpose Driven Life has been a regular staple in my literary diet for the past few years now. It is, in short, an overview of the most basic and fundamental tenets of Christianity. Clearly presented and very easy to read, it provides forty brief sound bites of the essentials of the faith. Rick Warren's style is very easy to digest and one can pick up the book, open a chapter almost at random, and come away enthused, motivated and refreshed. The book itself strongly recommends a more methodical and structured "forty day" approach, which is the way I tackled it the first time though, however I seem to remember the temptation to read the next day's chapter was often quite strong, as often happens when one is engrossed in the pages of another's work. Probably the greatest strength of Purpose Driven Life, and I dare say the reason for it's remarkable power to motivate, is it's heavy use of scripture (nearly 1000 quotes throughout). Further, it doesn't allow itself to get bogged down in semantics and therefore the reader avoids the same trap. Christians of all persuasions will find inspiring reminders of the basics all throughout these pages. One possible drawback to Purpose Driven Life is that the author cites fourteen different translations of the Bible in this work, and one is kind of left with the uneasy impression that the translation of scripture which most closely accentuates the author's point is the one chosen, further, a few of scriptural quotes seem to be taken out of their originally intended context within the Bible. That being said, nothing quoted within P.D.L. is contextually problematic with an overall scriptural worldview, and Rick Warren has delivered a fantastic book that has doubtlessly help many believers (myself included) to take steps forward in their Christian walk and to remember that "it's not about you."

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