Hyper-spiritual approaches to finding God's will don't work. It's time to try something new: Give up.
Pastor and author Kevin DeYoung counsels Christians to settle down, make choices, and do the hard work of seeing those choices through. Too often, he writes, God's people tinker around with churches, jobs, and relationships, worrying that they haven't found God's perfect will for their lives. Or—even worse—they do absolutely nothing, stuck in a frustrated state of paralyzed indecision, waiting...waiting...waiting for clear, direct, unmistakable direction.
But God doesn't need to tell us what to do at each fork in the road. He's already revealed his plan for our lives: to love him with our whole hearts, to obey His Word, and after that, to do what we like.
No need for hocus-pocus. No reason to be directionally challenged. Just do something.
- Great directives on decision making, esp. for the young.
Much about seeking God's will & understanding that God gives us wisdom to make decisions without a "word from heaven". Great reading (listening).
- Life changing book
I can't express my gratitude for this life changing audiobook. I was so stuck for fear of making the wrong decisions, because of so many misconceptions about doing the will of God. This book cleared it all up, all points of confusion were tackled one by one, with solid evidence from the Scriptures. Absolutely recommended to all christians who struggle to find out Gods plan for their life. So simple and so straightforward. So many thanks to the author and honor to God for not leaving us in the dark!!!
- Life changing book
I am so glad and so thankful for this book, which finally answered all my questions on the way God deals with us, His people. I was so terrified of making the wrong decisions in life, that it completely paralyzed me. Now this comes as a complete liberation, setting me free to do the work of the good Lord with joy and peace in my heart.
The points are so simple and clear and straightforward, and the evidence from Scripture so compelling, that it leaves no doubts as to what is required of us.
Thanks to the author and thanks to the good God for providing us with such guidance on how to expect His guidance.
- Show ALL Reviews
- Overall Helpful and Enjoyable Listen
I agree in general with the author, and I felt at peace with what he was saying. Then by "coincidence" I had Dallas Willard's book on my mp3 player, since I had recently tried to download it. I really was not thinking about listening to another "how to discern God's will" book, and I was not completely sure what Willard's book was about, but sure enough, it is about hearing and listening for God's voice on a daily basis. He says the exact opposite of DeYoung and says that Moses' and others experience of hearing from God directly SHOULD be the norm for Christians. Wow, So what to do, what to do? I suppose it will come down to a number of things: 1. Your own past experience. 2. Your own personality. 3. How you interpret the Bible on these issues.
I have heard God's voice and I know more than a few others who have too, but I can honestly say that I am only sure I heard it once and that other "sane" people have had similar experiences. We all know people who claim to hear from God daily or weekly, and I for one am always a bit wary. Maybe you think I shouldn't be, but there you go.
I had wanted this book for quite some time, so I was pleased to see it was for free here. It is a fairly short book, and i finished it very quickly.
- I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I...
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I was struggling at first with the things he was saying. I had never heard this type of thinking toward God's will and it took me by surprise. Then he went on to explain his thinking with scripture and I could grasp what he was trying to tell the listener. The whole idea of this book is to stop sitting around and waiting for divine intervention on a decision, or your life,get in a relationship with God and simply do something on a daily basis that will honor God. This is a must read for anyone, but truly for those who are struggling with God's purpose for their life.
The narrator does an excellent job on this story. He helps you feel the emotions of the writer, the sarcasm, the passion of the writer. He did an excellent job.
This is a must read for everyone, it will change your perspective on how to find God's will, and how to live your life for the glory and honor of God.
- Hey everybody! I took advantage...
Hey everybody! I took advantage of the opportunity to review audio books for christianaudio.com (http://christianaudio.com) because I love audio books. The first book I’ve had a chance to review is Kevin DeYoung’s Just Do Something. The book itself is a look at how we determine God’s will for our lives. DeYoung’s premise is that we spend too much time waiting for a supernatural feeling from God, and not enough time following God’s revealed will in the Bible.
The premise is challenging, and DeYoung presents his case convincingly. But this review is more about the audiobook that I got from christianaudio.com. It’s a high-quality work. The book is unabridged, which I like a lot. The sound quality is perfect. If I have one complaint, it would be with the person they chose to read the book.
He reads it well—good diction, all that stuff. But his reading of it is a bit dry, almost like he was reading a textbook or a recipe. The subject is interesting (it could even be life-changing), and it could have used a little more excitement in the presentation. But that should not keep you from hearing this really important book.
My recommendation: if you want to dig deeper into how you can really know God’s will for your life, this is a good place to start. And this audiobook is a handy way to take the book with you. The audiobook is well-produced, easy to download, and it’s a good deal also. Go get it here: Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung.
- When I listened to Kevin DeYoung's...
When I listened to Kevin DeYoung's book Just Do Something the first time, I came away feeling liberated, like I had just walked through a spiritual car wash that had scrubbed away the grime of doubt and misconception. But I became worried that, in the excitement and thrill of emancipation, maybe I had overlooked something, that maybe “just do something” wasn’t really a godly mantra for living life. So I listened to the book again and this second listen clarified my understanding of the aim of DeYoung’s work.
I agree with DeYoung that sometimes we agonize over the wrong decisions, prompting us to turn mole hill decisions into mountainous ones. I also feel that “adultolescence,” which is sometimes a byproduct of this behavior, is a problem that needed to be addressed. However, I do not agree with DeYoung’s view that if we are living biblically, our decisions matter less because whatever happens is the will of God. Can God’s providence turn our mistakes into something good and useful? Yes, but that does not mean He willed us to make the mistake.
Besides this, I think DeYoung makes a great and biblical case for growing up, not being lazy, and boldly making decisions, citing the life of the Apostle Paul as an example. I know I have had many times of doubt over whether or not to go on this mission trip, take this class, etc., but DeYoung is right in saying that we cannot see God work if we are always waiting on writing in the sky to tell us what to do. Sometimes we do just have to do something, though DeYoung makes sure to explain that we should be living righteously by the Word of God and that wisdom and prayer are essential. I think maybe he should have explained this earlier in the book, but he does get to it eventually.
Overall, Just Do Something is a full of helpful insights with some random, quirky moments thrown in for good measure. The narrator, Adam Varner, does a fine job in fitting the tone of this book. If you’re looking for something to zing you out of a spell of listless wandering and stagnation, this audio book is for you. You may not come away agreeing with everything DeYoung says, but at the very least you will feel convicted not to be a “do-nothing” child of God.
- Before listening to “Just Do Something”...
Before listening to “Just Do Something” on audiobook, I had never heard of Kevin DeYoung. “Just Do Something” is about finding what God's will is. It's not what I was expecting, and it was better than I thought. With the right mixture of theology, personal stories, and humor, “Just Do Something” is a great resource for anyone trying to find out what God's will is. “Just Do Something” wasn't condemning, but it did convict me. All my life, I've always tried to find out what God's will was, but I can see now where I wasted time and energy waiting for an answer. I'm also guilty of making decisions based on the perks and benefits, instead of what will make me holy. DeYoung writes against over-spiritualizing trying to find God's will and “tinkering” with life. The premise of the book basically is making choices that will help sanctify you, whether it's a job, marriage, or relocating.
DeYoung speaks about the providence of God throughout the book. Although God knows what will happen to everyone, we still have to go ahead and make a choice.
The biblical way of finding God's will is so simple, yet I know some people (including myself) might find it easier said than done. People that like to be in control of situations might find it too simple to just make a decision instead of agonizing over it, but that's where we just need to trust in the Lord. For He's the only one who can see the big picture. DeYoung also exhorts to listener to grow in sanctification (through prayer, reading the Bible, etc.) so that “God's thoughts will be our thoughts,” so that when we do have to make a decision, we won't have to spend months praying about it. We'll know the right decision.
The narrator had a pleasant voice, expression, and reading pace. However, sometimes the narrator was little throaty.
I highly recommend DeYoung's “Just Do Something” to mature teens and any adult who are trying to find out what God's will is. I only wish I had this book when I was making the transition to adulthood.
- Just Do Something: How to Make...
Just Do Something: How to Make a Decision Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc. (AudioBook) By Kevin DeYoung
From the Publisher:
Hyper-spiritual approaches to finding God's will don't work. It's time to try something new: Give up.
Pastor and author Kevin DeYoung counsels Christians to settle down, make choices, and do the hard work of seeing those choices through.
Too often, he writes, God's people tinker around with churches, jobs, and relationships, worrying that they haven't found God's perfect will for their lives. Or—even worse—they do absolutely nothing, stuck in a frustrated state of paralyzed indecision, waiting . . . waiting...waiting for clear, direct, unmistakable direction.
But God doesn't need to tell us what to do at each fork in the road. He's already revealed his plan for our lives: to love him with our whole hearts, to obey His Word, and after that, to do what we like.
No need for hocus-pocus. No reason to be directionally challenged. Just do something.
I had to really pay attention to this book. I’m not sure that I come down on the same side of the fence entirely as Kevin DeYoung does. I understand where he is trying to drive his point, but I think he pushes too hard. This book is about the search for finding God’s will for a person’s life and I got the impression that (at first glance) DeYoung thinks that can be a bit over-the-top. He states there is only one will of God and that is to love Him and people…everything else is up to us; “Just do something, because God doesn’t really care.” That is what he says. I don’t think that is what he means; like I said, I had to really “listen” (this was a complimentary copy of the audiobook through christianaudio's reviewer program).
Coming from a somewhat charismatic background myself, I can understand the position that DeYoung desires to balance, but as stated, his corrective measures overshadow that God does have a plan and will for people. Consider the prophet Jeremiah, consider the life of King David, consider Joseph’s words to his brothers when he revealed himself to them in Egypt, consider the life of John the Baptist, consider the plan and path of the Cross of Christ. All of these indicate that God does have a “perfect will.” These examples do not mean that we can work outside of God’s plan and he still not affect His will. We can see examples of this in the life of Abraham with the births of Ishmael and Isaac, or the words of Mordecai to Esther…and then in the life of Hezekiah.
I think that Kevin DeYoung would recognize all of these examples, and might even state with a little more sensitivity and generosity, his position on God’s will. I think, listening between the lines, he as much as stated his agreement with those examples…but the book itself did not seem very generous. In my opinion the position stated in the book was rather narrow and condescending at times. I will recommend it because he made some very good points and the abrasiveness of his position might be what some people need to hear in order to push beyond their fears; however, I do think that it could have been better written and better presented.
- This is a great book....
This is a great book. It is practical, biblical, logical, and at the same time spiritual. The book basically is about how to make decisions as a Christian, how to be in line with God's will, or how to seek God's will. So many times as Christians we never achieve anything because we don't feel sufficiently lead by the Spirit. The problem is we need to get the lead out! Kevin DeYoung shows us how to do that, be re-engaging our brains and our hearts and following Jesus.
The narrator does a great job, I listened to this book while I was working in the garden, and I felt as though the author was speaking directly to me, making the book come alive.
The author presented his cases very cleverly, by making a point and then addressing all the objections that had come up in my mind.
I will be recommending this book to my friends, especially those that are older single Christian men. I would encourage you to read it too, and then do the same.
- I was impressed by Andrew DeYoung’s...
I was impressed by Andrew DeYoung’s “Just Do Something.” The title captures the thrust of his book: Christians should stop sitting around, worrying about divining God’s will, and get on with their lives.
Sounds shocking at first glance, especially in a book all about God’s will. DeYoung candidly admits there’s no shortage of books on the market telling us how to figure out exactly what God wants us to do. The majority of these, he acknowledges, claim that God has a perfect plan for your life, down to the details of who to marry and what to eat for breakfast.
Nonsense, he argues, and I agree. The idea that God has every detail of my life mapped out is nowhere spelled out in the Bible and is full of logical holes. But God does give us his “general will,” the stuff God wants us all to do regardless of time and place. It’s always wrong to murder and always good to be generous. DeYoung is basically rehashing St. Augustine: “Love God and do as you please.”
How do the general guidelines work themselves out into the details of daily life? Wisdom. Having a heart and mind – character – shaped by God in Christ. As DeYoung says in ch. 5, “It’s about who you are, not where you are.” Let God shape your character and the rest will fall into place.
One example he often uses is relationships. You’re a godly guy looking to marry a godly gal? Fine, he says. Don’t wait for specific signs and wonders to say, “This is the one.” There’s some value to this notion, but more needs to be said about marriage. DeYoung’s thoughts on marriage are definitely conservative. While he’s not opposed to working women, his preference is clear: marry young, stay home, make babies. Choosing your spouse requires more intention than “he’s godly, she’s godly, let’s get together.” Premarital counseling is a good place to start.
It may sound like DeYoung is opposed to seeking God’s guidance in the details. That would be inaccurate. Even when our character has grown in Christ-likeness we can still make mistakes. Again, we need wisdom as part of that character but we also need openness to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Maybe DeYoung avoids talking about Spirit-led promptings but I’ve learned from Charismatic-Pentecostal sources to welcome regular encounters with God the Spirit. Even John Wesley, the great Methodist pioneer, believed that a Christian could make mistakes, even if her motives were totally pure.
The real shocker is this: DeYoung is a Calvinist! I’m amazed that a card-carrying Reformed (i.e. in a tradition influenced by the Protestant Reformer, John Calvin) pastor refuses to endorse the popular “specific plan for your life” line. In pop-level Christianity, that line of thinking is often used to draw people to Jesus. Again, I agree with DeYoung – ditch that pitch, but it surprises me to hear it from a Calvinist.
We must run in different circles, DeYoung and I. DeYoung has met many Christians who claim they can’t take that crucial next step in life – marriage, job, vocation – because they must discover exactly what God’s will for that decision. If only all churches were paralyzed because they’re so deeply concerned about God’s will! No, my gut tells me we have far more sinister reasons for avoiding the mission of God and life with God in general: apathy, laziness, unbelief. In other words, sin.
I’m sure there’s a healthy hand full of saintly Christians running around (or sitting around, I suppose) afraid to make a move because they don’t know what God wants. Good for them if they are indeed so concerned. But this excuse – “I’m waiting on God’s will” – may be a deviously self-deceptive maneuver. After all, DeYoung is a pastor, and who hasn’t told their pastor what they think their pastor wants to hear.
An encounter between Jesus and the religious elites of ancient Jerusalem comes to mind (cf. Luke 20). They want to know by what authority Jesus is doing all things he’s doing, in short, whether Jesus is doing God’s will. Or so they say. Jesus’ counter-question about John the Baptist reveals the hideous hypocrisy under their thin veil of piety. They’re convinced Jesus is a false prophet leading people astray, but they won’t own up to it. Publicly, they say, “Well, we’re just not sure if it’s God’s will. Let’s wait and see.”
“Just Do Something: How to Make a Decision Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc.” is good reading in the “finding God’s will for my life” genre. I read this book on audiobook and the narrator, Adam Verner, did a good job in his delivery. A little wooden at times but alright nonetheless. Worth a read or a listen.
*This book was provided by christianaudio at no charge for the sole purpose of review.
- This book is the key to...
This book is the key to knowing God's will for your life! Actually, the Bible is the key for knowing God's will for your life, but Kevin DeYoung displays the truth of this in this book quite well.
Apparently, there are many volumes published on the same subject, but as far as I'm concerned there doesn't need to be another. Seriously. How many times does it have to be demonstrated from God's word what God's straightforward desire for your life is? I mean, really? It seems quite clear that Pastor DeYoung has noticed the clarity with which God has addressed this topic, and I would recommend this book to anyone who has any doubts that it could be so simple.
From the outset, the narrator didn't seem to have enough variance in his voice to do DeYoung's writing style justice, but whether his voice grew on me or if the material itself was just compelling enough to shine through I ended up not in the least bit bothered by it. I think maybe the narrator was enjoying his job, and that may be why it progressively got better. Either way, I believe he did a good enough job to encourage me to listen to this again sometime in the future.
I also HIGHLY recommend this book to non-Calvinists and those who would call themselves Calvinists who don't take enough initiative on their own because of their persuasion that God is so sovereign that they don't really need to get involved in anything. Again, Kevin DeYoung does a superb job of dispelling the misconceptions held by both of these groups. I would be more clear as to how that is done, but that may discourage you from investing in this book and benefiting by it.
So, what are you waiting for? Don't just DO something--add it to your cart, pay for it, download it and get listening! It's God's will for your life!
- Adam Verner does not read this...
Adam Verner does not read this book in a dry, formal manner. He reads more as though he is your pastor and you are discussing the matter of seeking God's will for your life at your local coffee shop. I appreciated his voice inflection as well as his tempo in reading.
The content of the book was dead on. Kevin DeYoung nails it as far as the paralysis of analysis that grips many young Christians today. We have made an idol out of seeking God's will and Kevin attempts to rectify this in 128 short pages. His use of Scripture helps to elucidate his solution to the problem which in the end is a biblical solution.
Just Do Something is a book that needs to be read by every Christian, young and old. The book can be read in one sitting if you have the time (say 2 1/2 hours). It makes for an excellent study for youth groups and adult bible study groups. Kevin DeYoung offers many morsels to chew on when it comes to discerning God's will for one's life. Having the book to read is great--you will mark it up with your fountain pen. Having the book to listen to was even more of a bonus--I felt as though I was in the middle of a conversation. Adam Verner really makes listening to the book an enjoyable experience.
- Flying can be an extremely convenient...
Flying can be an extremely convenient means of travel, but one of the downsides has got to be all the waiting around in the airport. This week I flew back home from a conference I had been attending. I had brought books to read and I had packed my iPod full of music. Fortunately I also had a few good audiobooks stored that I wanted to listen to as well.
At just right around 3 hours of listening time, Kevin DeYoung’s book Just Do Something seemed to be a workable choice for my downtime. Narrated by Adam Verner, Just Do Something had me engaged from the book’s introduction. DeYoung tackles a question that every Christian finds himself or herself asking at some point along their spiritual journey: “How can I determine what God’s will is for my life?”
Listening to the book, I couldn’t help but think how Just Do Something would make a great gift for the two high school seniors at our church that will be graduating this year. DeYoung makes the argument that while the easy answers to life’s questions can’t always be found in the pages of Scripture, the principles are certainly there. The book seems geared for college and post-college aged Christians, but the decision making wisdom offered will be helpful for other generations as well.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Christianaudio as part of their Reviewers Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
- [ This review originally appeared in ...
[ This review originally appeared in
THE ENGLEWOOD REVIEW OF BOOKS 2 Feb 2010 ]
In naming, and denouncing the common paralysis brought on in Western culture by an overabundance of choices, Kevin DeYoung offered in his recent book Just Do Something a fresh – and to use his word, "liberating" – take on the ubiquitous questions in Christian circles about the will of God. Just Do Something, newly released as an audiobook by ChristianAudio, challenges its readers to quit worrying and beginning make commitments. An audiobook is perhaps ideally suited for this book’s target audience, who could listen to it as they flit from one thing to the next, keeping their options open. Although a bit on the monotonic side throughout, narrator Adam Verner does seem to loosen up a bit as the book moves along. Although DeYoung hits squarely on the mark in calling out the prevailing culture’s aversion to commitment, this book’s biggest disappointment is that the Church is relegated to at best a peripheral role in the decision-making process. His take on decision-making is indeed generally liberating, but unfortunately he seems unwilling to consider God’s desire that we be liberated from the greatest tyranny of modern Western culture, that of the self as an isolated decision-maker.
- Are you looking for God’s Will...
Are you looking for God’s Will in your life? Are you wondering what He has planned for you next?
In Just Do Something, Kevin DeYoung sparks interest in a new twist on God’s Will for the Now Generation – those of us in the 20’s and 30’s. Kevin says that we should be seeking out God’s will through prayer, wise counsel and scripture. None of that advice is new, but the approach is different. The “Now Generation” wants instant gratification, and they want the answers right now. They often lack the discipline of searching scripture, developing wise counsel, and praying.
He brings up many instances where people have over-thought God’s will to the extreme. He understands that it is important to have God in all of our decisions, yet God did give us a brain to think and make decisions; therefore, we should use it.
One aspect of the book I found interesting was his discussion of finding a mate. He believes that guys have become too complacent in their pursuit of their helpmates. In fact, he is so bold as to assert that men have pushed women into roles that they have not necessarily wanted to take. Kevin believes that men need to man up. Wow, bold words! If you want to hear what else Kevin has to say on that subject, take a listen to this book.
I suggest that you listen to this book. The book has the same pace and writing style as Rob Bell. If you have listened to Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell, then the narrator’s voice will have an eery similarity.
- Searching for the will of God...
Searching for the will of God in your life can be a daunting task. Trying to determine which car God would have you buy or where to go on vacation can be overwhelming, not to mention the stress of making sure you pick the right career path or marry the right person or be involved in the right ministry. Make the wrong choice and you’ll forever be “out of the center of God’s will,” having to satisfy yourself with God’s second best.
Talk about intimidating. At least, it is if you’re of the persuasion that God has a perfect plan for your life down to every minute detail of your life. Thankfully, as Kevin DeYoung puts it in his book Just Do Something, God doesn’t care about these things. With good doses of humor and wit, DeYoung argues that while God certainly does have a will for our lives, it does not involve leading us down a specific path for every decision we will ever face.
First, DeYoung points out that when we talk about the will of God, there are three different definitions we might be using. The first is God’s will of decree, or what God has ordained will happen since the beginning of time. God’s will of decree will surely come to pass and DeYoung notes that whatever happens was God’s will. The second definition is God’s will of desire, or what God desires from His creatures. These two have a solid Biblical basis for them and we would do well to heed them. The third definition, God’s will of direction, is where DeYoung says we expect something that simply isn’t there. “Does God have a secret will of direction that He expects us to figure out before we do anything? And the answer is no.” (p.24) The solution is to seek out and follow God’s will of desire and use wisdom, prayer and Godly counsel to make decisions.
DeYoung also spends time going over why we look for God’s will of direction and in what ways we try to find it. Sometimes we seek God’s “perfect” will (of direction) out of love for Him and wanting to do what would please Him. But more often than not, it is born out of an aversion to risk or simply an unwillingness to make a decision. Or we use God’s will as a crunch for avoiding personal responsibility. As DeYoung states, “Let’s not spiritualize our inability to make decisions in the quest to discover God’s will.”
Although quite small (which works to its advantage in making it simple & quick to read over again), Just Do Something is crammed full with very practical advice. While the main target audience seems to be college age readers, there is much in the book that more mature readers will glean from. Ultimately, if we are seeking to follow God’s will of desire as found in Scripture, we can have the freedom to make choices and, as the title suggests, just DO something. I would highly recommend this book.
Adam Verner, the narrator for the audio version from ChristianAudio, did a great job of capturing DeYoung’s humor and sarcasm. At times though, it felt that Verner was a little heavy on the snarky/sarcastic tone as well as coming across a little patronizing in sections of the book that didn't seem to call for that tone. Overall though, Verner’s narration was good.
- In Just Do Something, Kevin DeYoung...
In Just Do Something, Kevin DeYoung begins with the premise that many modern Christians are paralyzed by fear of doing the wrong thing because it just might not be God’s will. They pause, searching, waiting to have “a peace” about a situation, or for some special revelation from God.
Instead, DeYoung suggests, God has a definite will and it’s much more concrete than we imagine. He has simply asked us to obey the basic statutes given to us in his Word–to love him, to love others, to follow his principles and seek to become more like him.
DeYoung tackles the hard stuff–jobs, marriage and personal responsibility with a clarity I’ve never heard before when dealing with the topic of “finding” God’s will. He offers the idea that if we walk closely with God, we will have the wisdom needed to make decisions that are in line with God’s will. When we’re following his direct will, we can have any number of good possible options available to pursue, and any one of them could be God’s will–but that doesn’t mean that only one of them is God’s will.
I’m a fan of audio books, being I don’t have many blocks of time to sit and turn pages, but I DO have a lot of time when my hands are busy but my ears are still available. When the narration is well done and the book isn’t too long–which were both true in this case–the situation is ideal.
(Full review at http://heart-and-home.net/2010/01/just-do-something-finding-gods-will/)
- Review for Just Do Something by...
Review for Just Do Something by Kevin De Young
I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audio book. It has been a real breath of fresh air, and has helped me to take another look at how and why I make major decisions. In fact it has been a liberating listen for me. I wish I'd heard this years ago, as it would have certainly helped me to chill out and stop being so worried about whether I was doing the 'right thing or not'!!!
I have never come across Kevin DeYoung before, so really didn’t know what to expect. It had me laughing right from the introduction and throughout the whole audio book, which I think is a very good ‘sign‘. I like his relaxed style which the narrator brings across really well.
I like Adam Verner’s voice and would say that it really suited this audio. He was very easy to understand and had a pleasant voice.
This isn’t for theological students, but for lay people like me who sometimes need a sensible down to earth approach, that’s easy to understand. I would definitely recommend this to friends.
- I have finished listening to my...
I have finished listening to my first book for the Christian Audio review program. It is called Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung. This book covers the idea of “God’s will.”
From the product description: Too often, he writes, God's people tinker around with churches, jobs, and relationships, worrying that they haven't found God's perfect will for their lives. Or—even worse—they do absolutely nothing, stuck in a frustrated state of paralyzed indecision, waiting . . . waiting . . . waiting for clear, direct, unmistakable direction.
My thoughts: Many people say they are searching for God’s will for their lives. It is a phrase I’ve heard and used throughout my life, so it was interesting to hear someone else’s thoughts about this concept. The idea of this book is that God wants us to do something instead of just living life, waiting for Him to reveal His perfect will to us. Too many people make excuses for not doing anything…pursuing a job, dating a woman, or moving for example…because they are waiting to know God’s will. I understood and could relate to many of the author’s points. We need to seek God’s will with our plans and futures, but that doesn’t mean God wants us sitting around doing nothing as we wait to figure out His will. I am not sure I agreed with all that he said regarding marriage and children. Our purpose is to love and obey God. We need to do more of that and less waiting around doing nothing for God. My husband is going to listen to this audio book next and I look forward to discussing it with him.
As for the narrator, I have not listened to many audio books at this point so I don’t have much to use as a comparison. His voice was easy to listen to though.
Thank you to christianaudio.com Reviewers Program for providing a review copy of this audiobook.
- Growing up in a hyper-Word of...
Growing up in a hyper-Word of Faith/Charismatic type church, I heard time and time again that we must constantly be looking for the things above to help us find God's will, and if we didn't, then we weren't in God's will, and... well that is just plain bad!
Once I went over to the "Reformed Side" I found it very liberating to see throughout history how others would "find" God's will for their life, though it was a slow process but very freeing. I wish I would have read this book years ago, because it puts it all together in a single tome.
No doubt, no matter what church you are in you will find people struggling to "find" God will for their lives. In this book, Kevin DeYoung exposes all the myths surrounding "finding" God's will for one's life. Also showing how many hyper-spiritualize everything and wind up doing nothing, or how doing nothing, being lazy and saying "I'm just trying to figure out God's will" is NOT God's will. Indeed no matter what your background your toes are bound to get stepped on, but that is good if our toes are not walking in accordance with the Word of God.
The author doesn't just show what's wrong with so many modern day (even superstitious) ways of finding God's will but sets out to show you what God has given us so that we can do His will. He also shows plainly from Scripture that there are things God has not revealed to us and how rare it was that He did reveal future things it to saints of old, and how NOW God speaks to us through His Son Jesus Christ, through His Word (Hebrews. 1) and how we are not told to be searching for the hidden will of God.
He also shows what God has revealed to us that His will is for us for our lives, things like walking in Christ-likeness, by the power of the Holy Spirit, being filled with thanks, hope, and joy in any situation and being conformed more and more into the image of Christ.
It is almost so simple that people will not like it cause they want the "mystical" way.
A few comments on the audiobook version,... the narrator is great and expresses Kevin well. I know this cause I have seen Kevin speak in person and heard some of His sermons online. I don't know whether or not the narrator has heard Kevin before, but he is good at reading his book and expressing the humor in the book well.
The book itself it also full of Scripture proofs for the case that the author makes and is full of practical ways to pray and live this book out, plus is an easy read.
He also did a 1 hour talk on this at a conference which you can hear here: http://sgm.edgeboss.net/download/sgm/next/2009/next09.m_deyoung.mp3
Though I do recommend the entire book if you are looking for more clarity or examples.
soli Deo gloria
- This review was originally posted at...
This review was originally posted at http://jacobscafe.blogspot.com/2010/01/just-dont-read-just-do-something.html
This review of Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung was made possible through a complimentary copy of the audiobook through christianaudio's reviewer program.
I was looking forward to this book, expecting a bit of an incarnational perspective on finding God's will. That was there, but not in the way I expected. It presented nothing useful and was possibly the worst religion book I've read (or listened to). In fact, I think it can be quite spiritually, relationally, and psychologically damaging.
It seems appropriate to start the review with the title. Compared with other books I've reviewed recently, this title is very appropriate and accurate. In fact, it tells you exactly what the book is about. DeYoung's answer to God's will is don't worry about it; just do something. Anything. As long as it is not morally reprehensible.
This is where I started having problems. DeYoung discusses valid problems in today's society, namely indecision. But his solution is too extreme of just doing something. I do not believe that is the answer, nor is it God's desire for us to just act. I could probably go line-by-line with counterpoints to DeYoung's assertions, but that would make another book, and it's hard to do with an audiobook.
Here's a couple of his main points, though. One is that we do not really need to seek counsel in most any situation. That's what God gave us a brain for. Okay, that's true that we should use our minds, but that's also what the Holy Spirit is for. DeYoung's way of dealing with God's will does not require any real relationship with God; it just requires a knowledge of Scripture. He states that the Spirit speaks to us through Scripture. Fair enough. But he also speaks to us in other ways. True, they're subjective at times, as DeYoung says, but that does not mean they're unhelpful. Frankly, biblical interpretations are subjective, too.
He argues decisions need to be made in alignment with God's goals for our lives. I couldn't find the quote again in the audiobook, but the first two goals are moral purity and theological fidelity. Compassion was in the list, but it almost seemed an afterthought. While moral purity and theological fidelity are nice, Jesus did say the greatest commandment is to love God and love others. I think love is the primary purpose.
DeYoung argues that we do not have to worry about what we do because whatever we do will be what God's will is. Sorry. Completely disagree there. There's many examples everyone could come up with of ways that we act that are not in alignment with God's will.
He also asserts that we should never worry because that is a sign of little or no faith. True, God does not want us to worry, but we do. That's normal and not necessarily a sign of spiritual frailty. I could go on on this topic for hours from my psychology profession...
Then there's the real juicy stuff. It seems one of the primary reasons he wrote this book is because people are waiting to get married. He stated that in most cases, people should be married and own a house by 30. He sees a lot of problems as due to delayed marriage. That may contribute to some social problems, but there may be other, better solutions than just getting married earlier.
He almost argues that everything will be solved by marriage and mentions many "problems" due to and causing delayed marriage. Frankly, many of them seem like no big deal and not problematic. While he states there is nothing wrong with singleness, I just simply do not believe him. He pushes people to get married, saying things like, "Getting married is good for your sanctification."
He tells men that if you like a girl (and she likes you), you're both Christian, and no one has major problems, get married. This is one of the worst pieces of advice I've ever heard. This is the kind of thing that causes needless divorce or horrific marriages.
He goes on to say that women start a career, "which is not necessarily wrong, when they would rather be married and having children." He says, "Men, if you want to be married, find a godly gal, treat her right, talk to her parents, pop the question, tie the knot, and start making babies." I couldn't even believe I heard him say these things.
Not that these aren't important, but marriage and kids don't have to happen immediately. And they definitely do not solve all problems. There's also a lot more to life than that. DeYoung does not think so, arguing that fulfillment is selfish and not in God's plan. He needs to read the psychological literature on it, though, starting with Maslow's hierarchy of needs. In a situation, like many of my generation's grandparents grew up in, the focus was on a lower level of needs (like food and shelter), which were not guaranteed. Now for most Americans, those are not a struggle, so we can address higher level needs, including self-esteem and self-actualization. They are critically important.
My wife listened to this section, and she was shocked, also saying this book is awful, damaging, and offensive to women. She adds, "this is exactly the kind of crippling fear that so many single women feel today... that there's something wrong with them because they're not married yet.. this just adds to that feeling of inadequacy! The author is basically saying that we as women are all just waiting around for a man to come along so our lives can finally start. That's sickening." I completely agree.
DeYoung relies too much on his grandfather's perspectives as fact. We need to look to our elders for wisdom, but not all of them did things perfectly nor do they understand everything perfectly. My grandpa would disagree with his. So does that mean I can write a book arrogantly asserting that I know all Truth about God's will based on my grandpa?
The narrator, Adam Verner, was fine. He had good tone and intonation and made the book relatively interesting. Frankly, he was the best part of the book.
Better books dealing with God's will are John Eldredge's Walking with God (DeYoung criticized an unnamed book, but I think it was this one) and Francis Chan's Forgotten God. If you want a contrary opinion to those books or want to explore perspectives on God's will, this could be useful. Otherwise, don't waste your time on this book. I think it's unhelpful at best, spiritually and psychologically damaging at neutral, and possibly borderline heretical at worst.
- Kevin DeYoung presents a practical, down-to-earth...
Kevin DeYoung presents a practical, down-to-earth presentation of what it means to find and follow God’s will. Or should I say “make decisions?” He presents a strong and common sense argument against over-spiritualizing our directionless meandering through life and just applying scriptural principles to our decision-making. His message is simple: Just do something. Through the course of the book he explains that there’s more to following God’s will than arbitrarily doing whatever you want, but he makes finding God’s will easier and more difficult at the same time.
It is easier in the sense that we don’t have to wait for God to give us an unmistakable impression that we need to go and do something. What God has chosen to tell us about His will is evident in the Bible. It is harder in the sense that we are called to live godly lives, not to wait for God to reveal our next step to us.
The narrator reads the book the way it should be spoken. He adjusts his tone, pitch, and inflection, so a question sounds like a question, and sarcasm, well, let’s just say I love this book.
Mr. DeYoung presents his arguments and then carefully qualifies them, which I found to be a “page-turner” (so what if it’s an audio book). He’d say something and I’d think to myself, “That sounds right, but I have a reservation or two.” He’d then go on to explain exactly what he means and what he doesn’t mean, clarifying it with Scripture and clearing up misconceptions. This is a great book, especially for people who are waiting for God to show them what to do. Just do something!
- Christians can do all sorts of...
Christians can do all sorts of funny things when it comes to hearing from God. Some are convinced they’ve heard from God about something so run off in wild unwise and even unbiblical directions. Some look in strange places and use strange methods to hear God’s voice. Some can’t work out what he is saying so become paralysed by indecision. In Just Do Something, Kevin DeYoung attempts to provide some clarity on this issue. He argues that instead of seeking out some secret plan from God, people should learn to make wise, Godly choices and be committed to seeing those choices through.
The book is quite easy to get through. I finished the audiobook in an evening. The audiobook version was well narrated by the author. It is a very practical book so may not satisfy those who are wanting a deep theological look at how God speaks and if he still uses miraculous or extra-biblical means to do that. This lack of deep theology is not necessarily a weakness as it doesn’t make the book’s content fluffy and serves to make it more accessible to the new and immature Christians who could benefit from it the most. The two areas he particularly focuses his counsel on is choose a job and choosing who to marry so will be of great interest to college/university age Christians.
I believe this book will be of great benefit to many Christians. In addition to my audio copy, i plan to buy the printed edition to have it ready to lend to friends.
- In his book 'Just Do Something'...
In his book 'Just Do Something' Kevin DeYoung writes plainly but energetically about a subject that every Christian ponders immeasurably - what does God want me to do?
DeYoung doesn't set out to fix your life for you, or tell you what he thinks God is telling you to do, but he has an excellent talent for listing most of the questions that have run through your head at some time or another. I defy you to listen to this audio book and not keep nodding your head and muttering, 'Yep, I've done that - and that - and that!'
DeYoung writes with a quick but easy pace, which come across well with a great narrator in Adam Verner, and they both combine to make you feel that they've been where you are and it's okay because soon you'll see the wood from the trees.
DeYoung makes a clear case that God does have a purpose for you, and by grounding yourself in scripture you can begin to discern which direction is a desired or profitable one for your lives. Yes, God does sometimes set those bushes on fire, but most of the time God is waiting patiently for you to clear the static from your mind and actively make a connection with Him, then the direction for your daily life will start to become clearer.
This is definately an audio book you want to download and listen to over and over again and I highly recommend it.
- A rising star among young evangelicals...
A rising star among young evangelicals is Kevin DeYoung. DeYoung has written a number of books lately, all of which demand our attention. One recent book regards finding God's will call "Just Do Something: A Liberating Approach to Find's God's Will or How to Makes Decisions Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc." The author writes with the sort of honest bluntness and biblical clarity that is needed.
To many today, finding God's will is a priority (which is a good thing) and yet a mystery. DeYoung argues that that does not need to be the case. Too many today are waiting for God to tell them what to do, where to go, etc. They rely on, as the subtitle suggests, on things like visions and dreams, fleeces (a reference to Gideon), opening our Bible to random spots, etc. What they don't realize is that doing God's will does happen like that.
DeYoung gives a powerful analogy: his grandfather never worried about if he was in God's will. He grew up and matured, he served his country when duty called, he got a job and earned his keep, he got married, raised children, all while growing in his faith and serving the Lord. Perhaps many of us can tell similar stories about our grandparents. They needed lost sleep over the question of God's will because in their obedience to the gospel and their growing sanctification, they were already doing it.
God's will isn't the mystery that we make it out to be. Throughout the book, the author provides practical help to living God's will without waiting on dreams. Take marriage for example. Perhaps DeYoung's harshest and most needed words regarded marriage. How can you know if you should marry someone? Its quit simple actually. Are you marriable? Are the two of you Christians? What about each parents? Do you have a job? Can you support one another? If yes to all of these (and other questions of course) then yes, get married.
What I appreciated about this section was his criticism of how we increasingly wait to get married. Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. has raised this issue before and it is needed that we hear it from another leader among young evangelicals. We keep waiting on our careers, our education, our . . . something. The truth is, we need to grow up and get married. God wills us to find a spouse and marry them.
Furthermore, DeYoung debunks the myth of "that one." You know, that special someone in whom you were meant to be with for the rest of your life. This is a dangerous myth that has broken many peoples hearts. There is no special "one." If two Christians are married and have submitted themselves to Christ in complete obedience, there is no reason why they cannot have a fulfilling marriage modeling the gospel. This does not mean that we should not and cannot love our spouse with the same Cinderella-like love as before. But if we step back and think about the damage that has been done as the result of a dangerous view of marriage, perhaps we will rethink it.
I really enjoyed this book. I highly recommend everyone read it as it is a subject that needs to be taken seriously. Too many today sit around wanting to do God will and not doing it because they're waiting for God to reveal it. If only we would realize that He has revealed Himself, we just have to get up and do something.
I read this book via downloading a digital audio download from christianaudio.com. The reader did an excellent job. I have listened to hundreds of audio books and bibles, and the reader on this particular book had an excellent voice and the audio was well produced.
So instead of sitting there and wondering what God's will is. Get up and "just do something."
- This audiobook by Kevin DeYoung is...
This audiobook by Kevin DeYoung is a must for anyone who is searching for the will of God. I know that is a weird way to start a review of the audiobook, but it is that good. DeYoung in “Just Do Something” explains how to find God’s will.
It is not the ordinary speech saying that to find God’s will, you should pray to God and wait for Him to answer you with His direction in your life. Actually, he argues against that and says to do God’s will, just do something. God doesn’t tell us the future. He gives us the Scripture, and with that, we should be immersed in that. With the immersion in Scripture, you should decide what to do based on that. 1 Thessalonians 4 says that the will of God is your sanctification, so therefore, decide which one will be the best choice to make you more like Christ.
He critiques the idea of waiting for God to answer you very clearly and points to the right idea. As you might think that how can he go on for 10 chapters without being redundant or repetitive, he is very clear and has well-thought every part of this issue. He wrote about the whole issue and didn’t leave a part out which was very helpful for me.
The audiobook speaker was excellent though. He was easy to listen to and was very good at speaking out this book.
I highly recommend every Christian to listen to this audiobook (or read the book). It helped me greatly how to decide the tough choices and even the daily choices I make.
- May I begin: I really liked...
May I begin: I really liked this. Mythbusters ahoy, DeYoung simply takes common Christian phrases surrounding 'the will of God', and clearly and biblically explains how God's personal will for your life is both a secret, and written in front of you in black and white!
His tone is friendly and informal yet authoritative, and at times provoking and challenging without being accusatory. This book is practical, sensible, funny, but overall is focused on God and the Bible, as it should be.
The narrator's voice is interesting and has an informal feel, which is good, although two very minor things got to me: a couple of times you could hear the odd page turn, and he pronounced 'Warwick' as 'war-wick' rather than the correct 'worrick'...as I said, very minor.
Anyone who is a North American Christian aged between 25 and 45 and trying to discern God's will for them ought to read this, it is excellent. If you are not in that category you may find some analogies difficult to understand...but factually it is great, and very accessible.