Monday, March 07, 2011

Book: "Live Like You Mean It" (TJ Addington)

TITLE: Live Like You Mean It
AUTHOR: T J Addington
PUBLISHER: NavPress, 2010.

Live Like You Mean It: The 10 Crucial Questions That Will Help You Clarify Your Purpose / Live Intentionally / Make the Most of the Rest of Your LifeThree words describe my thoughts about this book: 'Practical, Personal, and Pastoral.' Addington, a survivor of a serious illness, writes this book in a very introspective manner. Having struggled through multiple medical treatments in hospital from Dec 2007 to January 2008, there is a sense of urgency in him, to share what is most important not just for him, but for people in general. (read more on his medical journey here) This is made real not via answers but questions. Through 10 penetrating life questions, Addington guides the reader to consider putting one's life into perspective, and to practically make it count. The purpose is to help the reader 'who desires to understand his or her life in a new way' (14).

The 10 questions are worded in very PRACTICAL ways. Each points to an objective. For example, the first questions focuses one on the pinpointing the purpose in life. The second makes one recognize how one is 'wired.' The third urges the reader to leave a legacy, and so on.

  1. Why am I here?
  2. What is my sweet spot?
  3. What will I leave behind?
  4. What really matters?
  5. What is my plan?
  6. How do I best recharge?
  7. How can my life have a ripple effect?
  8. How do I relate to God?
  9. Will I say yes to God?
  10. What shall I do next?
Somewhere through the middle of the book, Addington becomes more PERSONAL, with deeper sharing about his illness and his hospitalization period of ups and downs. He talks about recognizing our most valuable resources (66-7). He probes the need for relationships (82). He makes a strong case for relationship with God, to be 'recharged' (chapter 6). He encourages us to grow in community by becoming a 'ripple for Christ' (chapter 7). He even shares about his personal letdown after a frustrating 3-year role as a pastor in a church. Despite his apparent short-lived stint as a minister, he remains very much pastoral at heart. 

Addington brings this PASTORAL heart into the book as well. This is most evident in the way he approaches the tough matters of life. Addington relates the tragic story of Zach, and how the parents Shawn and Sally responded. Writes the author:

"The question is not whether we will suffer but how we will respond to it when it happens. A proper view of suffering requires a proper view of God and His work in our lives." (145)

Chapter 9 may very well be worth the price of this book. Addington challenges the reader not with scholastic references, or statistical numbers. This book deserves to be on the bookshelf of 'life guides.' The practical tips in the book gives the reader a ready-made reference to guide the reader to plan his own life more intentionally. The personal sharing gives the book a strong flavour of authenticity. The pastoral stance provides a comforting touch to the needs of a world of ups and downs. Praise God for people like T J Addington. I look forward to his next book.

4 stars of 5 


I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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