Maybe a better question: what makes you “make a difference” mad?
I’m not just talking about pet peeves or annoyances that gnaw at you throughout the day or give you that special headache. We all have these. But there’s another type of “mad” that does more than just make you search the cupboards for the nearest Advil. There are things, big things, (and they may be different for each one of us) that stir a holy frustration in our hearts and motivate us to take action.
The subject of a book I recently finishing, Holy Discontent by Bill Hybels, is this idea of sanctified frustration. The book is about finding those “things” in your life, those causes, or those issues that you see in the world, that make you stand up and say “I’ve had all I can stand and I can’t stand anymore!” Hybels seeks to stir the reader up, motivated them to find their “holy discontent” and move to action on it.
The format of the book is simple: once you find it (your holy discontent), you’re encouraged to feed it, fight for it, and follow it. Hybels has a gift for stirring up emotion and passion in the reader; this is the third book of his that I’ve worked my way through. This book (like all of his books that I’ve read) is filled with moving stories and anecdotes, intentionally arranged to inspire the reader on a narrative journey and move them to action. It was a good, quick, and encouraging read.
Reading this book was an overall positive experience for me. I need a little Hybels now and then to keep the blood of personal vision flowing. There are aspects to this book that necessitated reading it more with my heart than my mind, but to balance my normal reading material, I feel like that is needed from time to time. Hybels is a dynamic leader, personal evangelist, and caring pastor. He’s not an academic theologian however, so if you’re looking for systematic meticulousness from a theological standpoint you may find yourself a little frustrated (maybe even “holy discontented”) with his adaptation of certain biblical passages. He doesn’t quote the text and seek to exegete the exact words therein; instead his biblical examples are more narrative in nature. He undoubtedly accomplishes his over-arching goal of providing the reader with material that will stir their heart and move them to action. My only word of caution would be to make sure that your reading is balanced with more exegetically strict authors alongside Hybels.
Great book overall—worth the read.