Gordon MacDonald is a long-term pastor who writes with fantastic wisdom. Alongside Eugene Peterson and Henri Nouwen he is someone who I try to read anything that he publishes. Reading this book I was not disappointed.
I bought A Resilient Life a few years ago when I was beginning to explore my own emotional and mental health. On the back cover it talks about how life is like running a race – “isn’t this the perfect metaphor of what your heart is longing for – running life’s race with intentionality and grace? With strength and focus? Well, you can.”
The book intermingles MacDonald’s story of being a runner at high school, and being coached by the legendary Marvin Goldberg, with the wider stories from life. A Resilient Life looks at five major themes:
- Resilient people are committed to finishing strong
- Resilient people run inspired by a big-picture of life
- Resilient people run free of the weight of the past
- Resilient people train to go the distance
- Resilient people run in the company of a “Happy Few”
Over the years I’ve seen too many leaders burned and destroyed in their 40s, 50s and 60s. Only this last weekend here in the UK we’ve had the headlines surrounding Lord Sewel. Gordon MacDonald speaks out against this challenging people to put their life on a Christian foundation that prevents this.
For me having gone through something of a crisis moment in my mid to late twenties it’s been interesting to reflect on how I deal with the past and look forward to the future. My copy of this book has lots of scribbles and underlining – bits I plan to come back to time and time again over the coming months.