RADICAL from David Platt on Vimeo.
As many of you know, the Radical Series we listened to months ago is one of the main reasons we're picking up our family and heading to Haiti.
Side note: Maybe I've watched too much Lost, because the fact that Haiti is an island adds some extra creepage to my thought process these days.
There we were totally comfortable in our regular ol' American life and two things happened.
We met Katie. Well...not real life met her, but internet met her.
Katie's story is incredible.
She's 23, lives in Uguanda, and is a new mom...to 14 little girls.
Sad to say...I pretty much neglected my family for two days as I went back and read Katie's archives.
How does a 23 year old girl find herself in Uganda raising a house filled with girls?
I had to know.
Along the way I fell in love with Katie. I followed her blog. Every post she wrote made me get up from my computer, take a hard look at my life and admit...
There's got to be more to life than this.
I envied Katie's faith...is that possible?
For the first time in my entire life I felt a tug. I'd climb into the bed at night and whisper in Aaron's ear..."Let's go help Katie. Let's go help that girl."
So unlike me. I couldn't believe the thought of going was skipping around in my mind. Fairy like...those thoughts would flutter by.
Not long after we met Katie, we listened to the Radical Series.
Aaron actually read about the Radical Series on Katie's blog. She referenced it. I didn't listen to the sermons, because I never listen to sermons when people suggest that I should. That's just the way I am. Thankfully Aaron listened to the series and then begged me to listen.
It was a big fat pain in the butt to go through the Radical Series. I am not an auditory learner. Listening to the sermons in my kitchen with four loony boys running in and out of the house was not easy.
But I did it. During those sermons you could find me standing in the kitchen in a daze...like a zombie...or crying. Good for my soul. Not good for getting dinner cooked.
The Jesus I met in that series stunned me. I had never met that Jesus before. He was there all along...His words plain as day on the pages of the Bible I read every morning...but I had ignored Him...totally blew Him off.
Jesus talks a lot about heaven...about what the kingdom of God is like. He talks about the poor. The orphan. He talks about the danger of money...the trap of "things." He warns us...plainly warns us that we can't serve God and money. He tells us to go to all the nations...to proclaim the gospel.
And yet there we were...never thinking about heaven...living for this kingdom. We never thought about the poor. We loved money. We loved our stuff (we still do). We had never considered going...leaving this country, and we stunk at sending missionaries out. We were playing no part in world missions. No part.
We were startled by our disobedience.
Several of our sweet friends listened to the series with us. We'd meet. We'd sit and stare into space. We'd say crazy things like..."We have to change. We have to. Major changes. We have to hold each other accountable to this."
We'd get angry. We'd say terrible things. We'd hash out what we were thinking in that safe beautiful place of friendship..of family. Some of the things we thought were good. Some of the things we thought were real dumb.
Here's some of the ways the Radical Series affected our group of friends...
We're heading to Haiti. Another couple is headed to Guatemala. One couple is working diligently to get out of debt this year so they can be ready to do whatever God wants them to do. Two couples are in foster care training. One of the couples is about to head to California to help rehabilitate women caught up in the sex trade along the border. Several others are open and willing to "go" for the first time in their life.
Life-changing. I can hardly believe what God has done or figure out how He did it.
None of us think we're awesome. We're all pee in our pants, sweat our sheets scared to death right now. We've never followed Jesus on His terms...and we're all real afraid...have lots of doubt...have great peace....and yet totally break down some days.
We are all terrified, yet excited that Jesus has invited us into His huge, beautiful, beat the pants off the box office story.
David Platt (the pastor at Brookhills who preached the Radical Series) wrote a book called Radical.
I read it on our way to Haiti. I'm a learn-through-reading kind of person. The book was wonderful. It's the sermons in book form.
For many reasons I have day dreamed of kicking David Platt in his man parts. His sermon series totally wrecked our life. Poor David Platt. I don't actually know him, but there were times when I'd take out my frustration with my faith...with my life...with the changes I knew Jesus was leading us to make...on him. The pastor I've never met. That was super silly because David Platt was just reading the Bible to me. I was frustrated with Jesus. Not Pastor Platt. When I found out I could have NOT listened to the Radical Series online because a book was coming out, that gave me one more reason to be irked at David. So much undeserved angst aimed in David Platt's direction. I feel like I should apologize to him or something.
If you are like me and won't listen to sermons people suggest then how about reading the book? Want to? Huh? Want to?
We're going to give one (or maybe two) away. My sweet aunt bought a few copies and is letting us do a giveaway. Hooray!
Just leave your name in the comment section.
We'll draw a winner on Friday.
I may have totally freaked you right out of reading the book. Don't be afraid. God says not to be.
For those of you who want to know more about this man who wrote this book...you know, to make sure he's not advocating Kool-Aid drinking or something you can read about him here.
Sometimes people will commend a book by saying, ‘You won’t want to put it down.’ I can’t say that about this book. You’ll want to put it down, many times. If you’re like me, as you read David Platt’s Radical, you’ll find yourself uncomfortably targeted by the Holy Spirit. You’ll see just how acclimated you are to the American dream. But you’ll find here another Way, one you know to be true, because you’ve heard it before in the words of the Lord Jesus, perhaps most forcefully in the simple call ‘Follow me.’ Read this book. Put it away for a time, if you need to, while your conscience is invaded by the Spirit driving you to repentance. And then pick it up again. After you’re done reading, I think you’ll know better how to pick up your cross and follow Christ for the advancement of the kingdom and the destruction of false dreams.
—Russell D. Moore, dean, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary