Book: The Principle of the Path by Andy Stanley

Andy Stanley used a vivid analogy of a personal experience he had of traveling on a road past a Road Closed sign to discuss choices we make in life and where they lead.

Some choices don't lead where we think they do; instead, they can take us where we don't want to go. Stanley offers practical key ideas that can help travelers reach their destinations or cope with a Road Closed situation.

Stanley's book, The Principle of the Path: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be (Thomas Nelson, 2008) is organized by the following practical, key ideas (taken from the Study Guide):
  1. Swamp My Ride -- "Embracing the principle of the path will empower you to identify the paths that lead to the destinations you desire, while avoiding regret."
  2. Why Bad Things Happen to Smart People -- "Direction--not intention--determines your destination."
  3. The Great Disconnect -- "If you want to move in a certain direction, you have to choose the right path."
  4. Should've Seen That Coming -- "The prudent react to what they see on the horizon."
  5. The Heart of the Matter -- "To find the path that will take you where you want to go, you must break the cycle of self-deception."
  6. My Italian Job -- "Choosing the right path begins with submitting to the One who knows what's best for you better than you know what's best for you."
  7. The Story You Will Tell -- "One never accomplishes the will of God by breaking the law of God, violating the principles of God, or ignoring the wisdom of God."
  8. A Little Help from Our Friends -- "You will never reach your full potential without tapping into the wisdom of others."
  9. Attention Retention -- "What gets our attention determines our direction and, ultimately, our destination."
  10. Road Closed -- "When it dawns on you that your dreams can't come true, the best response is to lean hard on the One who allowed your disappointment to occur."

The ideas Andy Stanley shares in this book are easy to read, clearly presented, logically organized and important truths. Stanley uses common sense, vivid imagery, logic, Scripture, and a good sprinkling of humor to make his points. This would be a good book to give to a teen or twenty-something or use for family devotions with teens.

Some ideas in this book may be familiar to readers, restatements of messages heard through the years. Familiarity doesn't mean some of the truths are easy to live.

At times, the book seemed to over explain a common idea. This book could have been condensed without loss of substance.

Overall, Andy Stanley has an easy-to-read, warm and friendly writing style. He is able to express timeless truth with convincing contemporary language and imagery.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book for review purposes with no obligation to write a favorable review.

What is your favorite book written by Andy Stanley? If you read this book, what new insight impressed you? Please explain in the comments.


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