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Book Review: “All In” by Mark Batterson

All In

All In, is Mark Batterson’s newest book which will be released on September 24, 2013. Batterson is the Lead Pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., and is the author of numerous books.

All In is a challenge to truly follow Jesus with all you have and all you are. All In has been compared to Francis Chan’s Crazy Love and David Platt’s Follow Me, but I find that Batterson’s writing style makes it quite a different offering. All In leans more towards the style of a storytelling pastor/preacher.

The book is divided into five sections: Now or Never, All In, All Out, All in All, and All or Nothing. From front to back the book is calling out “followers of Jesus” to really examine whether or not they are followers at all. Is there anything stopping us from fully surrendering our entire lives to the lordship and leadership of God? Are my dreams His dreams? Are my plans His plans? Is my heart fully consecrated to Him?

What I appreciated the most from this book was the unrelenting call to die to self and to cross the line of faith to give all my hopes, dreams, plans, and heart to God. To truly be a disciple is to go “all in”, and Batterson does a great job asking tough questions and sharing inspirational stories of those who have gone “all in”.

One thought I found incredibly challenging was on how I view the dreams and gifts God gives me. Here is what Batterson says: “…if the gift ever becomes more important than the Gift Giver, then the very thing God gave you to serve His purposes is undermining His plan for your life…Which do you love more: the dream God gave to you or the God who gave you the dream?” (p. 42-43). I can absolutely see how we (I) can become so enamored by God’s gifts (ministries) and dreams that if God ever decided to take those from me, my love for them could potentially cloud or overshadow my love and obedience to Him. Again, is my heart fully His?

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book:

“I’m afraid we’ve cheapened the gospel by allowing people to buy in without selling out. We’ve made it too convenient, too comfortable” (p. 18).

“I know some people who have been saved for twenty-five years, but they don’t have twenty-five years of experience. They have one year of experience repeated twenty-five times” (p. 40).

“There comes a moment in our lives when enough is enough. The pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change” (p. 81).

If you are looking to have your faith challenged, or maybe God is already challenging you and calling you to take a huge step of faith, Batterson’s new book will be a great read.

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I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers 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.

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