What People Are Saying About 18 Mile
I’ve been real encouraged and excited about the feedback I’ve been getting from 18 Mile. Just wanted to share what a few people have said about it and the key takeaways from the book as well.
If you haven’t read 18 Mile, I featured a key takeaway for readers at the end of each chapter. I’ve included all of those below. If you are still in the process of reading the book you might want to hold off on reading the key takeaways until after you’ve read the chapter. If you don’t plan on reading the book but want to get a general idea of what is discussed in it, the key takeaways will provide that for you.
What People Are Saying
“18 Mile is about real life with a very real God. Dave makes a God who can sometimes seem invisible in our everyday lives easy to see.” ~ Greg Henry, Pastor of Gospel Revolution Church
“18 Mile accurately and beautifully conveys the never-ending love of God for all people. Dave’s story is empowering, engaging and his transparency and compassionate heart for others is felt throughout each page!” ~ Sade Champagne
“I enjoyed 18 Mile a lot and got to know Dave and Jesus better through the real life experiences he shares.” ~ Rick Malone, Pastor of Christ Esteem Ministries
Key Takeaways From 18 Mile
The main takeaways from the book, in my opinion, are finding your identity in Christ and the grace of God. Finding your identity in Christ saves you from all the lusting for life that I did and trying to justify myself in the eyes of others, God and myself. The grace of God allowed me to see God, others and myself for who they are which led to the fruit of the spirit coming forth in my life (peace, love, joy, kindness, meekness, etc.) and freedom from offense, rejection and unforgivness which opened the door for much better releationships in my life with others and with God. Each specifc takeaway from the chapters is below.
Key Takeaway From Chapter 2 – Because I didn’t have a strong foundation in my life, I was easily influenced by my surroundings and reluctant to speak up out of a fear of rejection. Don’t be afraid to let your voice be heard. If people around you don’t respect you or listen to you, then it’s probably best to find other people to hang out with who will value you and your opinions.
Key Takeaway From Chapter 3 – Don’t let other people’s opinions determine your worth and value. When you know who you are, it gives you stability no matter what situation you face. I would encourage you to find your value in what God says about you. In case you’re not sure, He has spoken the most beautiful language one could possibly speak about you. Your identity serves as an anchor to your soul. If you’re interested in learning more about what God says about you, visit my blog site www.godneedsnewpr.com and the specific post, What God Believes About You.
Key Takeaway From Chapter 4 – Although I didn’t realize it at the time, God had a plan and was answering my original prayer I prayed back in May that I mentioned. I had no idea He was going to answer it the way that He did but He did answer it. Many times we get so busy with life that we don’t even realize when God is answering our prayers and/or we take it for granted. It’s good to go back and remember the things God has done in your life. It will keep you encouraged as you continue your walk with Him. What are the some of the best things God has done in your life?
Key Takeaway From Chapter 5 – I obviously hadn’t developed very much patience yet, which is a fruit of the spirit by the way (Gal. 5:22). I felt like I received my answer to prayer about the rapping, but didn’t understand that it wouldn’t happen right away. Patience is a very underrated quality in my opinion. If someone asked you, would you rather have a million dollars or patience? Almost everybody would say a million dollars, but patience would be around for you long after the million dollars was gone.
I used to hear golfers talk about patience a lot and always wondering what they were talking about. How did patience have anything to do with golf? Well, I came to understand that what they were talking about was a confidence they had in their games. They knew it was just a matter of time before they would score like they desired to. This is how it is in the Christian life. Christians can have patience regardless of how things are going because they have confidence that their God and Father is a good Father. Their attitude is such that it doesn’t matter what it looks like, they know God is working it out and going to come through for them. This is walking by faith not sight.
“You kill good ideas when you expect them to be great too soon.” ~ Jon Acuff
Key Takeaway From Chapter 6 – Hindsight is always 20/20 but had I known that God had this job for me and that I was still going to graduate college, I wouldn’t have panicked as much as I did. Again, it’s so huge to be able to trust God and it’s not something you do on your own. He will persuade you if you just allow Him into your life.
The other thing I was doing here was finding my worth and value in other’s opinions again. It’s something we are all tempted with continuously. We live in a performance based society that is constantly trying to get you to define yourself by what you have, what you do and what is happening to you. It’s just something we all need to be aware of and can thwart when we have our identity in the right place (Jesus).
Key Takeaway From Chapter 7 – There is a scripture in the Bible that says taste and see that the Lord is good. It always amazes me to see how frustrated and stressed out people are, yet they won’t even give God a chance. I know I made a lot of bad decisions, but letting God in my life was a good one and an easy one at that. I mean it’s not like things were going great for me. I felt like I had nothing to lose. Even if you do feel like you have a lot to lose, it’s really not compared to eternity. Don’t you think that’s worth considering?
Key Takeaway from Chapter 8 – I got in way over my head because of lust. I thought it was love but it was just lust. I would highly recommend that you be friends with someone before you start dating them, so that you get to know them really well first. Also, you need to be secure in yourself and honest with the other person about where you are in life. If they can’t accept that, then they are not the right person for you to be with. In other words, don’t try to impress people with money you don’t have and relationships in which you really don’t know the other person.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 9 – The root of my relationship problems with Sarah was that our priorities were not aligned. Now this was not really fair for her since I changed my priorities shortly after we started our relationship, but it just goes to show the problems you will face if you are not equally yoked. My mindset was to find somebody who I was attracted to and got along with. I figured the rest would work itself out…not true. The most important thing about entering into a relationship with somebody is that your spiritual beliefs are aligned. This is completely opposite from the way most relationships start.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 10 – Hindsight can tell us what we may have had to sacrifice but it can’t tell us the bad stuff we might’ve missed out on. Even though it didn’t look like things were working out that well for me at the time, they really were…I just didn’t know it yet. I still had a lot of things I was waiting for but the best way to wait for something is to not even be aware that you are waiting for it. The time I spent with God during this season in my life made the time go by fast, so that I didn’t think much about all the things I used to do and all the things I wanted in the future. I was able to stay present and enjoy life right where I was at.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 11 – God cares more about you then about what you can do for him. Whatever you do for God, do it wholeheartedly with pure motives. Make sure your motives are right first. You don’t have to try to earn God’s favor and doing things to impress people will leave you in a cycle of frustration and disappointment.
When you are in the center of God’s will for your life, things will come easily, you won’t have to struggle so hard to make things happen. Things will happen as a natural result of walking in God’s strength. It will feel effortless on your part and you will enjoy it the most because you are living life from your passions, not from a position of thinking you should or have to.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 12 – Whether you are a baby Christian, been walking with God for a long time or not a Christian at all, realize the grace of God is all you need. Relying on your own strength and wisdom is a slippery slope and detrimental to your relationship with God.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 13 – You don’t need to try to justify yourself and prove yourself to others. When you are rooted in the approval and provision you already have in God, it prevents all the lusting for life, stress from having to justify yourself and worrying about getting all the things you need for life. Understanding your identity in Christ and God’s heart towards you allows you to get your mind off of all the things you need and puts you in a position to just enjoy your life with God right where you are while He gets you where you are going. This is the life God has always intended for us to have…just like Adam walking in the cool of the day with Him before the fall. The life God has designed us for is not one to be born from self-effort, willpower or obligation. God wants you to be able to live from the passion in your heart that results from your relationship with Him.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 14 – The world may give up on you. The church may give up on you. You may even give up on yourself. But God never gives up on you. He is a friend that is closer than a brother. There is nothing that can separate you from God except you believing a lie. The truth sets you free.
Many times in our lives we need someone to believe in us. Unfortunately, we are not convinced that God wants to be this person. We think that he believed the lie Satan accuses us with. Beloved God is for you. He believes in you. You can go to Him whenever you want as many times as you need and know that He will always be there for you.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 15 –Forgiving others does more for us than it does others. There is only one person who has truly seen you for who are; that is God and He has not rejected you. Understanding this frees you from unforgiveness and getting offended so easily, which allows you to have much better relationships. Your quality of life will improve when you have more meaningful relationships as well.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 16 – Hopefully you can see there is a big difference between someone who hopes (as the world defines it, i.e. wishing) and someone who has hope (as the Bible defines it, a confident expectation). It’s the difference between living a life of unrelenting disappointment and being able to really enjoy life right where you are.
Key Takeaway from Chapter 17 – This last one is for any parents who may be reading. As I was writing this I was thinking about how my parents might feel about some of the things that happened in my life and how they may be tempted to feel guilty. The first thing to remember is that even though God was a perfect father to Adam, he still rebelled. Children have the freedom to make their own choices, so if they have chosen to rebel, don’t take that as an indication of how you have done as a parent. However, it’s important to realize that you can’t shield your kids from the real world forever, so one of the best things you can do is help them understand how to make wise decisions with their freedom. There is no better way to do this then to lead them into a relationship with God who will then lead them into all truth.
Also, even your kids choose to rebel like I did, God will never leave or forsake them. Even if you aren’t able to reach them for whatever reason, God knows exactly what they need in order to turn to Him. That doesn’t mean that God will send hard times upon them though. Bad things may happen in this world because we live in a fallen world and because of the very freedom I mentioned. But the scriptures say it is the goodness of God that leads men to repentance. Regardless of where you or your kids may be currently, God is constantly looking to “goodness” all people into turning to Him.
The enemy wants us to live in fear of what we have done or what may happen in the future. I know it’s tempting to worry about your kids future and your own. I also know it feels like we are being irresponsible if we don’t worry but this is not what God wants for us. He wants us to have a peace and joy about our futures. He wants us to be confident that He is working all things out for our good. Even if your kids are not exactly where you’d like them to be right now and/or your relationship with them is not where you would like it to be, God can work great things out of those situations. Just turn to Him, talk to Him and trust in Him. It’s much better than trying to do it on your own.
Gallery (Pics From The Book)
The first house pic is my dad’s old place on 18 mile where all the parties went down. The next two of of the “Big Boy” house, which was the first place I stayed in Chicago around the cross streets of Irving Park and Damen. The last one is the first office I worked at in Chicago.