'Greater' Follows Great First Book from Megachurch Pastor
By Lauren Yarger
In the world of books by pastors, those by Steven Furtick, the thirtysomething senior pastor of Elevation Church in Charlotte, NC, stand out as some of the best with great teaching and insight, rather than just "feel good" philosophy.
His debut, "Sun Stand Still" (Multnomah Books, 2010 -- you can read the review here) still is one of the most illuminating books I have read for new insight into God's word and plan. If that book encourages us to pray "audacious prayers," his newest, "Greater: Dreams Bigger. Start Smaller. Ignite God's Vision for Your Life" (Multnomah Books, 2012) shows us what living an audacious life looks like.
It's the opposite of where so many Christians find themselves: wasting their lives while waiting for greatness, or wallowing in defeat at failed attempts to get there. There's a "greater" life just waiting to be lived, Furtick, says. God doesn't promise greatness, but he does offer you a life that's greater than the one you're living now. Stop settling for 'good enough," he encourages and pursue "greater."
Furtick offers practical steps for how to move on the new path, using personal experiences interwoven with lessons from the life of the prophet Elisha. If you think God has something bigger planned for your life, but you haven't been able to figure out what it is, or if you know what it is, but can't figure out how to get there, Furtick has written this book for you.
Some of his insights:
"We spend all our time dreaming about where we wish we were and what we wish we had and no time investing in where we are and using what we have. And so what we wish we had never comes because we never use what we do have."
"What matters most is not what I think I am or am not. Or what others think I am or am not. What matters is what my Father sees in me and what He says about me."
". . .the greater life isn't about living the perfect life. It's about keeping your passion intact, no matter what."
Detailed questions for each chapter are included in the back of the book to encourage discussion for study groups.
For more information about Furtick or the book, visit
Lauren Yarger has written, directed and produced numerous shows and special events for both secular and Christian audiences. She co-wrote a Christian musical version of “A Christmas Carol” which played to sold-out audiences of over 3,000 in Vermont and was awarded the 2000 Vermont Bessie (theater and film awards) for “People’s Choice for Theatre.” She also has written two other dinner theaters, sketches for church services and devotions for Christian artists.
Yarger trained for three years in the Broadway League’s Producer Development Program, completed the Commercial Theater Institute's Producing Three-Day Training and produced a one-woman musical about Mary Magdalene that toured nationally and closed with an off-Broadway run.
In 2008 she was a Fellow at the National Critics Institute at the O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, CT. She writes reviews of Broadway and off-Broadway theater with a Christian perspective for Reflections in the Light (http://reflectionsinthelight.blogspot.com/) and is editor of The Connecticut Arts Connection. She also is a contributing editor for BroadwayWorld.com
She also reviews books for Publisher's Weekly and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. She formerly was Connecticut theater editor for CurtainUp, a national theater web site bsed in New York and a reviewer for American Theater Web.
She also served as Executive Director of Masterwork Productions, Inc. and worked in arts management for the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
She is a freelance writer and member of the Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association, The League of Professional Theatre Women and The CT Critics Circle.
A former newspaper editor and graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, Yarger lives with her husband in West Granby, CT and has two adult children.