“There has to be more than this…”
Who among us hasn’t at least thought this in our most honest moments, even if we haven’t asked the question out loud? Though we know we should count our blessings and be thankful, we still wonder, “Is this all there is? Surely there must be more to life than what I’m experiencing.”
Regardless of the current economic situation, our current job stresses or family struggles, we would still be searching for something more. This longing for something more was placed within us by God Himself so that we would search for Him. While we try to substitute all sorts of things with the hope of satisfying our deepest longings, relatively few find true and lasting satisfaction.
Don Cousins, author of Unexplainable: Pursuing a Life Only God Can Make Possible (David C Cook, September 2009), says that this longing is something every one of us feels. Cousins gives the example of an interview that quarterback Tom Brady did with 60 Minutes a few years ago in which he talked about his successes in the NFL. Brady stated that he was making more money than he ever thought he would make playing football, but even with all of the money, all of the attention, all of the adoration, he knew that there was something missing. Brady asked the question, “Why do I have three Super Bowl rings and still think that there is something greater out there for me? ...it’s got to be more than this.”
In Unexplainable, Cousins shares with readers that God created us to find life in Him, and apart from His involvement, we will never find the life He intended. “As Jesus said, ‘I came that they might have life, and might have it abundantly (John 10:10)’.” Cousins explains, “God wants the only explanation for us to be Him. Most people don’t know it, but they too want God to be the only explanation for them as well. When we experience God’s influence in and through us, we enter the realm of the UNEXPLAINABLE.”
Unexplainable is broken into four parts in which Cousins takes three longings found in every human heart and shows how only God can bring satisfaction and fulfillment
The Apostle Paul refers to it as “the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension.” It is a peace that is unexplainable because it surpasses human comprehension. It is a supernatural peace. When this peace (contentment) floods the human heart, it enables the recipient to be content regardless of their circumstances in life. This is the contentment for which we all long. Regardless of how “good” life is, such contentment is unattainable apart from God because it is the “peace of God.”
God has given us a desire to succeed in life, and no one wants to be a failure. The world has its definition of success, and most are living according to this definition. While meeting the world’s definition of success brings a measure of satisfaction, it falls short of truly satisfying the longing of the heart for success. Our God-given desire for success can only be satisfied by Him, based on His definition of success, not the world’s. Perhaps the greatest implication of this difference is seen in the fact that worldly success comes to an end when one’s life comes to an end. Godly success lasts for all eternity, and as eternal creatures, it is this success for which we long.
Everyone wants to matter. Everyone wants to count. Everyone longs to be valued and considered worthy. However, significant in the eyes of the world is performance based. While this sort of significance brings some satisfaction, it once again, falls short. What each of us truly longs for is significance that is based upon who we are. We each want to be loved, valued and considered worthy simply for who we are. This understanding of significance is not attainable apart from God. While the world expresses love that is conditional, only God’s love is truly and completely unconditional. The fact that we are made in God’s image provides us with all the significance we will ever need
The final section of the book outlines some key ingredients if we are to move from the EXPLAINABLE to the UNEXPLAINABLE by embracing God’s truth. Cousins offers practical, biblical instruction regarding the steps each of us will need to take in order to experience the Unexplainable.
Very nicely laid out and written in a style that is understandable by anyone, (read: you don't need a degree in theological studies to understand it). This book has really spoken to me. It is inspiring and yet challenging and shows you how to live a life that is unexplainable apart from God. We all go through issues and struggles and sometimes it is hard to see out of them. In this book the author shows how one can find contentment, success and significance in the midst of trials.
I loved the format that divided the book into sections, each one building on the other. This is one of those teaching books that I found extremely easy to get into and if you know me that is not a statement I can make about very many non-fiction titles. It is also one of those that I have taken a pencil too and have done much underlying and taken many notes. There are discussion questions at the end of each chapter and an optional DVD so it is excellent for a study or book group. I'd recommend it to anyone who is struggling in any way and even if you are not.
Thank you to B&B Media Group for providing the book for review
Unexplainable by Don Cousins is available at David C. Cook.com