Sunday, January 13, 2013

Book Review: Unleash! by Perry Noble

Perry Noble is the Senior Pastor of NewSpring Church, a multi site church in Anderson, South Carolina.  I've been following Perry for a long time.  I think I first came across him when I heard about the billboards his church put up advertising a sermon series they were doing called "I Hate My Marriage."

Since then I have watched Pastor Perry's church grow and his national notoriety rise.  To be honest, I've sort of had an on again/off again interest in NewSpring.  From what I can tell a nation away, Noble's theology is solid and his passion for sharing Jesus is unquestionable.  It is mostly just his methods that I'm not always comfortable with.

On to the book.  Following the pattern of many pastor's writings, Unleash!: Breaking Free From Normalcy tracks the story of David and Goliath, pulling out anecdotes from the Biblical story to support the themes being written about.  In the book Noble wants to help people break 'free from normalcy' and discover all the adventure and life that Jesus has for them.  To do so the book tackles topics like forgiveness, community, God's goodness, and being action oriented.

There are some helpful ideas in the book and plenty of memorable one-liners and 1-2-3 action steps.  I don't know for sure, but I would guess that much of the material in the book comes from sermon's that Pastor Perry has shared with his church.  Each chapter sort of reads like an extended sermon manuscript.  Nothing ground breaking in the book, and not deep exegesis (though certainly some of Noble's interpretations), but nevertheless, it was an enjoyable book to read.

Here are a few quotes and one-liners that I pulled from the book (and may use myself someday in a sermon)...

- We focus on what is normal when God has promised He is able 'to do immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine.' (Eph 3:20)
- If you don't let your past die, then it won't let you live.
- One of the quickest ways to forget what God says about me is to focus on what the enemy says about me.
- Forgiveness is not achieved, but rather it is received.
- Often the key to tremendous breakthroughs in our lives is our willingness to take the small steps behind the scenes.
- The Bible doesn't promise weapons will not be turned against us, but rather that none of those weapons will succeed.
- Becoming the person God has called you to be begins with who you are right now, not after you become some future version of yourself.
- Forgiven people forgive people.
- Are we going to allow circumstances to determine our belief in God, or are we going to allow our belief in God to reign over our circumstances?
- All too often we'd rather pray than obey.
- It is impossible to experience spiritual maturity while hanging on to an area of disobedience.
- Whenever we attempt to do something significant for God, the enemy will attack us with intimidation and manipulation.
- Salvation is not the finish line but the starting block.
- Emotion is not enough to sustain our devotion.
- Information does not equal transformation.

To learn more about Perry Noble, or to get more information and resources related to Unleash!, visit the  website Unleash Book.

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