I have the pleasure of taking part in a book review program through Crossway called Beyond the Page. As an incentive for doing the reviews I gain access to complimentary copies of the books that I choose to review. I simply write the review and post it here on my blog as well as at least one other consumer site such as Amazon.com, Goodreads.com, Christianbook.com etc. This is the first of what I hope will be many more reads and reviews to come. I have two goals in taking part in this program. One goal is simply to gain access to books and support the authors through the reviews. More importantly I hope to impact lives by creating interest in what I believe to be important Christian literature that will help others grow in theological knowledge and healthy application of biblical concepts. So here goes.
In this book DeYoung is painstakingly honest about his own wrestling with the insanities of life, why they occur, what the dangers are, and how to strive to overcome them from a biblical mindset. He lets us know from the beginning that he has not solved the problem of busyness. He simply wants to point to some important considerations that have been helpful to him. He breaks them down as with a 3, 7, 1 outline. Three dangers to avoid, seven diagnoses to consider, and one thing we must do.
I was challenged by many points that he made. One of the points that I believe is central to the whole book and struck me particularly was found in Chapter 5 entitled "Mission Creep". In this chapter DeYoung makes the very important point that "You can't serve others without setting priorities". He drives them home by using Jesus as the example, pointing out that even as the crowds were looking for him, he had to make choices to move on to the next town. Jesus understood his mission and knew how to prioritize in order that he be busy doing, only the things that he should be doing to accomplish his purpose. This, rather than doing everything that he could be doing because he or anyone else thought it should be done. If Jesus had to prioritize, we most certainly do.
DeYoung makes several solid points in this chapter but one statement at the end of Truth #1 really hit home. He says, "The people on this planet who end up doing nothing are those who never realized they couldn't do everything". What a great statement! That is a person I do not want to become.
There are very few if any, especially in the "civilized world" who do not need help prioritizing, even if they do not know it. I for one hope to better apply the idea of making priorities based on the passions and gifts that God has given me, rather than trying to be all things to all people. I long to be effective for the cause of Christ and I believe the truths in this book can help me better navigate that journey.
For Christians in general, healthy prioritization is absolutely essential if we are to be as effective for the kingdom as God would have us be. DeYoung does a great job using the concept of being "Crazy Busy" to challenge every aspect of who we are, what motivates us, where we find our identity, and how we manage our time. This book is not just about finding sanity. It is about being a good steward of the time God gives us with a view to the advance of the kingdom and the glory of His name.
I do not believe that there is a person who may read this review who would not benefit from reading it. It is short, sweet, to the point, and entertaining as well.
I highly recommend it!