I just finished reading Mark Batterson's latest book Soul Print and I give it two thumbs up. Subtitled "discovering your divine destiny" Batterson unpacks the truth that there never has been and never will be anyone like you, but that isn't a testament to you, it's a testament to the God who created you.
Batterson opens up his book with a quote from C.S. Lewis "There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal" The first chapter is entitled Opening: Soul Print and he lays the foundation for the book. He starts to scratch the surface of what is to come by explaining that there is no one else like you, we are each uniquely made. He then digs into the story of an Old Testament hero, David. Through the book he draws parallels to our current life and to the life of King David.
Scene 1: Holy Confidence: Batterson looks at the experiences that we have in life, whether good or bad and how God puts those experiences in our life to grow us into the person He created us to be. Looking at David's life, Mark talks about how David took down Goliath and how God brought David to that point for that specific reason. David was great with a slingshot because he was a shepherd and he had taken on lions defending his sheep. These experiences gave David a Holy confidence that when he stepped up to Goliath, David knew he could handle the giant! Batterson then asks us, what experiences have we been through in the past that have shaped us for what we are dealing with today or might be facing in the future.
Scene 2: Lifesymbols: This chapter talks about how we can use life symbols as guide posts to remind us of how God has worked in our past. He explains how he specifically decorates his office with symbols that remind him of God's faithfulness. He poses the question "Why am I surrounding myself with meaningless things?" The art on our wall, the stuff on our desks, do they hold personal meaning?
Scene 3: The Crags of the Wild Goats: This chapter talks about how David cut off the corner of Saul's robe (1 Samuel 24:3-4). David had the chance to kill his enemy but he didn't take it because an opportunity isn't an opportunity if you have to compromise your integrity. Batterson reminds us that God is always concerned with who we are becoming. We fixate on what and when and where, but the primary issue is who you become in the process.
Scene 4: Alter Ego: This chapter unpacks how we set up identities or securities in things other than Christ. David isn't afraid of dancing in his undies as he is bringing the Ark of the Covenant back, David wants to talk the focus off of himself and show those around him that God is more important than his royal robe. The tough question is what are we hiding behind?
Scene 5: The Devil's Workshop: This chapter talks about how sin can creep in if we let our guard down. David had this issue when the his army went off to war and he found himself on the rooftop. Batterson challenges us to have accountability, have someone in our life who has permission to openly and honestly speak into your life and show us our "blind spots".
Closing: The White Stone: Batterson closes his book with reminding us that God has a name for each and everyone of us that no one knows except for him (Rev 2:17). He begins the book and ends the book the same, "There never has been and never will be anyone like you, but that isn't a testament to you. It's a testament to the God who created who. Your uniqueness isn't just a gift from God. It's your gift to God."
Overall, I really enjoyed this book, Mark Batterson asks a lot of tough questions and challenges us to dig deeper into self discovery and find out who God is calling us to become, we are each different and we each have our own soul print.