I finished the book Radical by David Platt yesterday on my flight to New Mexico. I have no words to describe this book. The best I can do is a word I overuse as it is…amazing. If you’ve ever read Francis Chan’s Crazy Love, you need to read Radical. For me, it’s Crazy Love on massive steroids. I hope to share thoughts on this book over the next few days as I try to put into words what’s going on inside me.
The tag line on the front cover is a good place to start. Taking back your faith from the American Dream. I’ve said to a few friends over the years that capitalism has had a profoundly negative influence on the church in America. The focus of capitalism is the bottom line. How much have we grown? How much have we made? How can we brand ourselves so that people notice us? But the author, Platt, shoots that down quickly when talking about faith. Our sole purpose in life is to proclaim the glory of God. Not ourselves. Not our cool music or our engaging videos or our likeable pastor.
For years, I wanted to be a rock star. Not just any rock star…a CHRISTIAN rock star. That’s right. I grew up dreaming of being Michael W. Smith, DC Talk, Jars of Clay, and all the others in that industry. But it wasn’t for God that I wanted to do this. It was for me. Years later, I realized that being a rock star was unrealistic, but I could do this worship leader thing like Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, and Hillsong United. But it wasn’t for God, at least not completely. It was mostly for me and my desire to make much of me.
I still have those desires, to be noticed, to be valued, but I hear God calling to me saying, “Let Me be that for you. Let Me noticed and value you. Not this world. You focus on loving Me and telling the world about Me. I’ll take care of you.” Sometimes I listen to Him, often times I don’t. I’m very stubborn, as I suspect we all are.
That’s a start toward unpacking my thoughts on this book for you…