Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Interview with Rick Warren

This is a forwarding that I received from Ling Pui this morning. Although not a lot of people visit my website, for those who aren't in Ephesus mailing list, I would like to share it with you here. I'd rather do this than bombard your mailbox with my forwarding... some people really hate it and may filter me as spam if I do that! Hahaha....

You may wonder, who the heck is Rick Warren?! For those who aren't concerned with the christian community, don't read New York Times (his book Purpose-Driven Life was on The Bestsellor List for advice book for consecutively 149 weeks) or Time (he was featured as one of the 25 most influential evangelicals in the State in Feb. 07, 2005 issue of Time), here is the most unbiased link I've found that describes him.

Well.... I guess you can find it yourself...

And to be honest, although I have given the book to my friends, I have not spent the time to read it. C'est dommage!!!!

Here it goes:
Interviewed by Paul Bradshaw, University of Notre Dame, USA

"People ask me, what is the purpose of life? My response is : In a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We are made to last forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven. One day my heart is going to stop, and that will be the end of my body-- but not the end of me. I may live 60 to 100 years on >earth, but I am going to spend trillions of years in eternity. This is the warm-up act - the dress rehearsal. God wants us to practice on earth what we will do forever in eternity. We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that out, life isn't going to make sense. Life is a series of problems: you are in one now, you're just coming out of one, or you're getting ready to go into another one. The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than your comfort. God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy. We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that's not the goal of life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ-likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the toughest...with my wife, Kay, getting cancer. I used to think that life was hills and valleys - you go through a dark time, then you go to the mountaintop, back and forth. I don't believe that anymore. Rather than life being
hills and valleys, I believe that it's kind of like two rails on a railroad track, and at all times you have something good and something bad in your life. No matter how good things are in your life, there is always something bad that needs to be worked on. And no matter how bad things are in your life, there is always something good you can thank God for. You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your problems.
So I began to ask God what He wanted me to do with this money, notoriety and influence. He gave me two different passages that helped me decide what to do... (II Corinthians 9; Psalm 72) First, in spite of all the money coming in, we would not change our lifestyle one bit. We made no major purchases. Second, about midway through last year, I stopped taking a salary from the church. Third, we set up foundations to fund an initiative we call 'The Peace Plan' to plant churches, equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, and educate the next generation.
Fourth, I added up all that the church had paid me in the 24 years since I started the church, and I gave it all back. It was liberating to be able to serve God for free. We need to ask ourselves: Am I going to live for possessions? Popularity? Am I going to be driven by pressures? Guilt? Bitterness? Materialism? Or am I going to be driven by God's purposes (for my life)?

When I get up in the morning, I sit on the side of my bed and say, "God, if I don't get anything else done today, I want to know YOU more and love You better." God didn't put me on earth just to fulfill a to-do list. He's more interested in what I am than in what I do. That's why we’re called human beings, not human doings."

Well, that's it.... whoever has Purpose Driven Life and is willing to lend it to me will be truly appreciated :)

1 comment:

enfant de lune said...

I have a copy! (but you'll have to come back to Edmonton to borrow it)

That's an interesting article yet I can't help but think, how many of us are truly willing to give up fame and fortune? Human beings are not altruistic by nature. If you think about it, would you be willing to give up your job, your school credentials - or not mention to anyone that you serve within your church? Do everything for Him and not let anyone know and risk poverty and criticism?? It's something that we all should think about but we don't all necessarily have the willpower to do.