• Books I have read in 2010: 1

    Good to Great

My Utmost for His Highest – Jan 6

My Utmost for His Highest is a daily devotional that I have had since graduating high school but I have never read it from start to finish.  Considering my ambition to read a book a week in 2010 I figured this would be a great time to tackle this classic work by Oswald Chambers.  The devotion I read yesterday entitled, “Worship,” struck me enough that I thought about it for the rest of the day.

Genesis 12:8 “After that, Abram traveled south and set up camp in the hill country, with Bethel to the west and Ai to the east. There he built another altar and dedicated it to the Lord, and he worshiped the Lord.”

Chambers defines worship as, “giving God the best that He has given you.”  This idea makes sense to me and is something I have heard before.  But what he goes on to say next is what really got my attention.  In the above verse Abraham set up his home in a place that positioned him between both Bethel and Ai.  Chambers explains that Bethel symbolizes a connection with God while Ai symbolizes the world.  Abraham positioned himself between both of these influences in his life.  The idea is that if you position yourself completely connected with God you become out of touch with the world. 

While it may not sound bad to be isolated with God the fact is that you find yourself removed from having influence over anyone in the world.  Adversely, if you were completely connected with the world you would lose your rooting in the Lord and would become overcome by its influence.  The point of where Abraham placed himself for worship was that he could serve as a vessel or channel from God to the world.  The quote that sums this idea up the best reads, “Quiet days with God may be a snare.  We have to pitch our tents where we shall always have quiet times with God, however noisy our times with the world may be.”

I think the reason this devotional resonated so deeply with me is that I identified being placed between the two influences: God and the world.  It’s the core purpose of this blog and my pursuit in life to successfully merge ministry and business.  I found this an encouragement that I am on the right path, headed in the right direction, confident of the right motivations.  May this blog and my efforts to unite these two worlds be my act of worship.

A heart for Jesus and a mind for business,

And we’re off!

I am literally 48 hours into 2010 and I am growing more and more excited about this year and what I’m hoping to accomplish.  The books I am reading and the one that I already finished have given me a glimpse into an exciting year of learning and growing as I process new ideas ranging from spirituality to business and anything else I can get my hands on.

The one book I have already finished is Jim Collins’ Good to Great (so I started the book in 2009 but I will be working through the book over the next several weeks).  I am looking forward to posting 6 blogs dealing with the 6 key principles he shares in the book.  Additionally, my boss Debbie and I are dedicating an hour a week over the next few months talk through the content of the book.  I plan on pushing the limits of the number of books I read by the same author with Collins as I already have Good to Great and the Social Sectors and I am going to pick up Built to Last.

I will have to be much more methodical in my approach to the two other books I have started reading in 2010.  My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers will take me the entire year to read as it is a daily devotion.  While it won’t take me the entire year to read The Call by Os Guiness the spiritual content is heavy and it will take time to process and journal.

The next book I plan on purchasing within this week is The Daily Drucker by Peter Drucker.  It is also a daily devotional so the sooner I can get my hands on it the better.  I don’t want to fall too far behind and have to read 2 a days for too long to get caught up.

So we’re off!  I am excited to dive deeper into the books I’ve started, begin the exciting journey through the books that are on my radar, and anxious to see what books God will reveal to me that I’m not even aware are in existence.

A heart for Jesus and mind for business,