McDonald's book is one that helps one get back on the track of life organization of life especially after the chaos experienced during the holidays. Chapters twelve and thirteen are especially important in tackling the issues and challenges of everyday life. Other than the bible, this is one of the most direct books that provide guidance on how to handle issues of everyday life. One of the most important advices evident in the book is especially important for people who have a tendency to procrastinate and overload their calendars. Apparently, this is how people lose sight of the structure of their time, and this book is one of the greatest gifts in terms of advice.
One of the profound things that make this book immensely important is the way he is honest enough to explicitly discuss the issues that affect people. In chapters twelve and thirteen, the author even goes further to cites examples from the Bible to explain the way people should live in prayers, meditation and intercession. According to the author, there is lack of restrictions in words for a person who thinks that they are capable of doing everything. This means that a person lives according to the words they proclaim by their mouth. The author uses John the Baptist as a case on point to prove his assertions. When John the Baptist is asked who he is, he replies by saying that he is not Christ. The author says that this proved that John knew the position of his life and ministry. He was not as great as Christ, and this is why he was in a position to act as a forerunner to Jesus Christ. This is a position that he accepted, and he was willing to abide by until the real messiah came.
Through the chapter by chapter study guide in the book written by Chua, the reader is left in a position to examine their life by answering questions pertaining to a number of issues. In chapters twelve, the author provides advice with specific examples and illustrations of how Christians can make good use for meditation as one of the ways of speaking to God. Ideally, in the current world, meditation is gaining dominance over the traditional vocal prayers. It is perhaps because of this fact that the author of book writers about meditation.
According to McDonald (in chapter twelve), meditation and prayers should not be a monologue but rather a dialogue between the Lord and an individual. To illustrate this, McDonald recalls his first computer experience. He notes that even though the computer was instrumental in helping him save and retrieve summons and scripts that he was using to write the first edition of the Ordering Your Private World book, learning how the use the computer took him close to three weeks. He recalls further that, he always had to tap enter before the computer would process any given command. To him this was a form communication between him and the computer that is akin to the listening process. In a similar manner, prayers and meditation involve the pressing of the “enter” key, which essentially involves the communication between and individual and God. In a called life, it is the quiet voice of God that rises above all the expectations of the world. There is no push and pull from any outside forces, and the person does not feel like they are worn off. In as much as some of the drives from external forces may parallel the call from God, the actions of an individual always emanate from the voice of God. They will always be in a position to hear this through quietly listening and conversing with God.
McDonald's examples are abstract issues that people face in their daily life including simple aspects such as how to create files or even on ordering the office. Instead of talking about other people’s experiences, like other Christian writers, he provides illustration in his personal life where he experienced failure and how he changed the situation.
One particularly intriguing aspect of chapter twelve is that it offers a clear distinction between what the author refers to as living a driven and a called life. In simpler terms, the author simply inquires on the source of motivation of life, and how it affects the way different people view life. Reading these chapters helps one underscore the importance of listening to God’s words. As McDonald writes, Samuel had to be attentive in order to hear God calling him. In the same way, Christians should be attentive, and first step towards this is finding solitude and silences. It should be noted that attentiveness and ability to listen to God’s words is something that should be learnt as the second step after finding solitude and silence before once can finally proceed to the last step which is learning to listen to God.
Chapter Thirteen of McDonald's books titled Seeing through Heaven’s Eye about the third way through which we can enhance communication with God. According to McDonald prayers and Intercessions are important characteristics that distinguish saints from non-saints. To emphasize his point, McDonald refers to Thomas Kelly’s writings on prayers. McDonald also writes that a big proportion of Christians regard prayers and intercessions are the top most important facets of Christianity, particularly in their struggles to understand the requirements of holiness.
The same chapter proceeds to discuss an inherently important topic with regards to prayers. According to McDonald, there are a plethora of reasons as to why Christians have difficulties with their prayers. McDonald avers that to many Christians, worship and intercession appear as unnatural acts. This happens even though men, from the creation of the universe, we created to be able to communicate with God. McDonald traces the causation of this wrongful view of worship and intercession to the sin; he suggests that it is because of sin that humans have turned something that was meant to be a natural act into an unnatural act. McDonald further asserts that humans are unable to worship effectively because they view worship and intercession as a kind of weakness.
Ideally, Chapters twelve and thirteen may be considered self- help chapters because this is the part that the author breaks down a problem and then uses illustrations from other people’s life experiences to provide answers and guidance to readership of the book. After reading the book, it is quite easy for one to give a clear description of a driven and called life, and to decide the one that best suits them. This book can be likened to the words from the book of Jeremiah.
Boa, Kenneth. Conformed To His Image: Biblical and Practical Approaches to Spiritual Formation. (Chicago: Little Brown, 2009).
Chua, Mark. Sabbath for Pastors. (New York: Graceworks Publishers, 2010).
Macdonald, Gordon. Ordering your Private World. (Chicago: Thomas Nelson, 2007).
MacDonald, Gordon. Ordering your private world. Nashville: Oliver-Nelson, 1985.