Primal by Mark Batterson
I first heard, and was privileged to meet, Mark Batterson almost two years ago at the Innovative Impact Conference at the Fellowship of the Woodlands (now Woodlands Church) just outside Houston, Texas. His core values and approach to ministry impressed me then, and continue to do so. When I was given the opportunity to read and review his newest book release, Primal: A Quest for the Lost Soul of Christianity, I jumped at the chance. Allow me to start by saying I am not disappointed.
In Primal, Batterson calls for a return to the most core principle of living a Christian life. He calls for a commitment to following the Great Commandment. He reminds us that we are to love God completely; this means that we love him with our heart, soul, mind, and strength. There is a section for each of these elements in this short book. He equates heart, soul, mind, and strength with compassion, wonder, curiosity, and energy respectively. You will have to read the book to get his more full descriptions of those terms. Based on this, Batterson proposes that it is time for another reformation.
The last reformation was a reformation of creeds. The next reformation will be a reformation of deeds. The last reformation was symbolized by one central figure. The next reformation will be led by millions of reformers living compassionately, creatively, and courageously for the cause of Christ. It will be marked by broken hearts and sanctified imaginations. And the driving force will be the love of God. A love that is full of compassion, wonder, curiosity, and energy.
Overall, I give this book very high marks. There are some areas that may be a little overstated or may be a bit of a stretch in order to make a point, but in my mind, these are minor issues. I enjoyed and was challenged by Primal. I hope you are too.
Primal is available from Random House and anywhere else books are sold.