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The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren—A Synopsis (continued).

Chapter 39—Balancing Your Life (pages 305-311)


The ideal Christian life is one in which the believer keeps in balance God’s five purposes for his life, which are summarized in the two Great Commandments (Matthew 22:36-40) and the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18, 19) of Jesus, as follows:

Love God with all your heart—the believer was planned for God’s pleasure, so his purpose is to love God through worship.

Love your neighbor as yourself—the believer was shaped for serving, so his purpose is to show love for others through ministry.

Go and make disciples—the believer was made for a mission, so his purpose is to chare God’s message through witnessing.

Baptize them into . . .—the believer was formed for God’s family, so his purpose is to identify with local believers (church) through fellowship.

Teach them to do all things . . .—the believer was created to become like Christ, so his purpose is to grow to maturity through discipleship.

The believer can best keep his spiritual life (five purposes) balanced by doing the following:

Joining a small group for accountability.

Believers can best internalize the principles of their five purposes in life by discussing and sharing them with other believers. In so doing this they reinforce them in their lives and establish a sense of accountability, not only to God, but to those around them with whom they fellowship.

A small group allows for feedback and encouragement from others who share the same values and purposes in life. Likewise, spiritual victories and blessings, both small and great, can routinely be shared with those in a small group.

Regularly evaluating his spiritual health.

Believers should regularly evaluate their spiritual health (their fulfillment of the five purposes in life) through Bible study (the map to correct thoughts and actions), prayer (genuinely asking God to reveal to them their spiritual condition and any sin for confession) and personal introspection (of motives for their service to God).

Recording his progress in a personal journal.

Believers can profit by recording the various life and spiritual lessons in a personal journal, to which he may review from time-to-time for both blessing and reinforcement. Also, by placing his thoughts down in writing the believer helps to make them concrete in his life. Since a Christian’s problems and pains force him to focus on God, these are of particular value and should be included in the journal.

Passing on what he learns to others.

Believers always learn more by instructing others in spiritual matters. To help another is to help both the giver and receiver.


“A great commitment to the Great Commandments and the Great Commission will make you a great Christian.” (pg. 306)

“We learn best in community. Our minds are sharpened and our convictions are deepened through conversation.” (pg. 307)

“Remember, we are meant to grow together, not separately.” (pg. 307)

“For your spiritual health you need to regularly check the five vital signs of worship, fellowship, growth in character, ministry, and mission.” (pg. 308)

“Writing helps clarify what God is doing in your life.” (pg. 308)

“Whenever problems occur, remember that god uses them to fulfill all five purposes in your life: Problems force you to focus on God, draw you closer to others in fellowship, build Christlike character, provide you with a ministry, and give you a testimony. Every problem is purpose driven.” (pg. 309)

“Those who pass along insights get more from God.” (pg. 309)

“Regardless of your age, the rest of your life can be the best of your life, and you can start living on purpose today.” (pg. 311)


Ephesians 5:15; 2 Peter 3:17; Proverbs 27:17; Philippians 4:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:11; Lamentations 3:40; 1 Corinthians 11:28, 31; 13:5; Galatians 6:4; 2 Corinthians 13:5; Lamentations 3:40; 2 Corinthians 8:11; Hebrews 2:1; Numbers 33:2; Psalm 56:8; Psalm 102:18; Proverbs 11:25; 2 Timothy 2:2b; James 4:17; 1 Timothy 4:6; John 17:4, 6-26.


­The ideal objective for every Christian is to live a balanced spiritual life, one in balance with his five purposes in life—please God through worship, love others through fellowship, become like Christ through discipleship, serve other through ministry, and witness to the lost through mission. This can best be achieved by participating in small groups of believers for the purposes of reinforcement and accountability, by regularly evaluating one’s spiritual health, by recording one’s spiritual progress in a personal journal, and by passing on to others one’s spiritual and life lessons.