Digging Ditches or Stuck in the Mud?

Kimberly Schimmel

5 Stars

August 3, 2012

Are you feeling stuck in mediocrity? Do you want to do great things? Steven Furtick urges us to focus not on great, but on greater. Beyond good enough and beyond human definitions of greatness is God's plan to do things in our lives that are greater than anything we could do without Him.

Using the life of Elisha as the pattern and example, this book leads the reader to dream big dreams and start with small steps. Like Elisha burning his plow before he followed Elijah, we need to get rid of things that tie us to our lesser life in order to follow God's call. Furtick gives examples of people who gave up things that seemed great in order to pursue a greater calling. He also shows that things we might not consider great may be part of our becoming greater in God.

My favorite chapter is entitled "Digging Ditches." In II Kings chapter 3, we find an army dying of thirst and two kings turning to Elisha for help. The message from God is to "make this valley full of ditches." God could have sent rain immediately, dropped water bottles from heaven, or created a reservoir out of nothing, but he tells them to dig ditches. Do they really believe He will send water? Fortunately for Israel, they trust the message and dig ditches all night long. God then fills them with water.If you are waiting for something greater, ask yourself if you need to be digging a ditch.

The chapter "A Little Oil" is likewise a life changer. When the prophet's widow is facing creditors who will take her sons as slaves, Elisha asks her "What do you have in your house?" Instead of saying "nothing" she remembers there is a little oil. In a variation of the ditch story, she is directed to borrow jars, which God fills with oil. Are we moping around waiting for God to move when we should be out borrowing jars for him to fill? Are we using what He has already given us?

Greater is a book for individual edification or for class study. Discussion questions are included at the end of the book. I would recommend this for youth as well as adults.

I received an advance reading copy of this book from Multnomah Books in return for my honest review.