Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Facing the Giants

Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church and author of The Purpose Driven Life has taken his gifts of strategic thinking and communication to the next level. When I read his first book, The Purpose Driven Church, years ago I thought to myself, "This is so simple, why hasn't anyone else written this book?" The book truly added no new information to the existing studies of church growth, but what it did do was take the information and made it simple, practical, and doable. Likewise, he is the first to admit that the information in his mega-bestselling book The Purpose Driven Life was nothing new, yet he was able to put the information in a way that it sold more copies than nearly any other book in history.

The genius of Rick Warren is his ability to take complex problems and abstract ideas and turn them into simple and measurable action plans. This is why Riverside is embracing his vision of The P.E.A.C.E. Plan to combat the five Global Giants of our world. And, yes, we do believe it is the church's responsibility to address the giants of Spiritual Emptiness, Self-Serving Leadership, Extreme Poverty, Pandemic Disease and Rampant Illiteracy. To think that it is government's job alone to deal with these ills and the church's job is only to care about "saving souls for heaven" is to forget that Jesus healed a lot of sick people, comforted the poor and afflicted, exposed injustices, and provoked the wealthy and powerful to have compassion for the weak and helpless.

Anyone who gains such visibility and is audacious enough to create such a plan is going to be the target of criticism, and Rick Warren gets more than his share of that. But I am glad that he is using his gifts to help our generation of Christians and churches face these global giants as God enables us.

Tell me, what do you think of the P.E.A.C.E. plan?


KS said...

I was so impressed and moved by David Longstreth's sermon last week and I cannot wait to hear the second part this Sunday. Being a Christian is more than just salvation, it is about doing God's will and the P.E.A.C.E. plan is an important part. I hope and pray that I won't just listen to David's sermon but yield to God's will for my life so that I can help combat the Global Giants.

Kathy said...

These P.E.A.C.E. messages have touched our home/hearts so deeply (and timely) as Elise returns to Oakmont soon in preparation for the Praise & Worship Concert and her YWAM New Zealand trip in September. Hearing that our lives as Christians must demand that we think/work outside of our comfort zones home, work environment and do the will of God...certainly offers a challenge to do ministry that is for others, and not ourselves.

Example: At a recent hair salon appointment in Shadyside I was sharing that my earnest recovery from back surgery (two herniated disc repairs by microdiscectomy)was so that I might do my part as a leader in supervising my VBS Mission Express kids to do good work in Community Clean-up Zone.
As I was talking I was unaware that another woman was listening as I described how this years VBS program was based on Community Service, which I descibed was similar but on a smaller scale to what our adults do small groups (What would Jesus Do?) and mission projects. Her response was..."Or what adults should be doing." She asked me about RCC and said that was the type of church she would like to attend. She lives in a close neighborhing commmunity and plans to review the RCC web-site for more information about attending. WOW!!

For ANCHORS, this series will be well received. I still get a bit "nervous" and a little anxious each time I begin a new committment with RCC in beginning a new ministry. I need something to HOLD ON TO. Am I a good enough Christian, Can the Lord use me to my potential? Am I going to be a complete failure in the eyes of the adult leaders?...although at RCC every activity, I have experienced true acts of love that have provided me with growth/strength in my spiritual life as a Christian.

I am looking forward to hearing the ANCHOR series and learning how to structurally incorporate them in my life.

Thank you Pastor Bill

lauren said...

Hi there,

My name is Monique & I'm part of the PR team for Sherwood Pictures--creators of FACING THE GIANTS.
Thank you so much for supporting the movie on your blog! We wanted to keep you informed of their latest project--FIREPROOF.
It's due to hit theaters this September in theaters nationwide. You can go to to view the trailer, read the synopsis, and sign up for updates to stay up to date with all of the FIREPROOF happenings! If you're interested in learning more or need any resource, pictures, and downloads for your blog please email me at and I will be happy to get you what you need.

Again, thanks for blogging!
Lovell-Fairchild Communications