Great Day Every Day: Navigating Life’s Challenges with Promise and Purpose by Max Lucado

This is the best non-fiction book I’ve read in months.  Every word touched my heart and ministered to my spirit.

Mr. Lucado’s style of writing packs a banquet of thoughts and encouragement into every nook and cranny of the book.  So much so that I feel like I spiritually feasted on numerous scriptural truths within each chapter and section.  There is so much in the book and it is only 168 pages, and only eighty-eight of those are what I would call the real body of the book.

The table of contents is a bit confusing, it kind of jumps from what I’d call chapters to sections and then back to chapters but not in what I would call an outline form.  Not that it matters.  The meat of the book isn’t made up of how the index looks but rather what he has written within the chapters and sections and I would say it is meaty indeed!

Chapter one introduces the idea that every day deserves a chance.  Not just the good days, but the ‘bad’ days too.  Each and every day is a day that God has made, thus worthy of rejoicing in.  What an idea, huh?  How many people do you know who could seriously and I really do mean seriously cause you or me to consider the idea that even bad days deserve a chance?  Not only does Max pull that off, but he does it with eloquence and ease.  Wow!

Section 1 encourages the read to accept the messes we have made, the wrong turns, etc. and to understand that if we let yesterday’s mistakes sabotage today’s attitudes we will mess things up even more.  Section 1 is about recognizing the truth of Lamentations 3:22-23 and receiving His grace, forgiveness, and mercies daily.

Chapter two is ‘Mercy for Shame-Filled Days’ and Max unveils what he calls ‘the official language of Christ’.  Max also asks if we can hear Jesus above our accusers and assures us that Jesus will take our guilt if we will ask Him.

Chapter three is about Gratitude for ungrateful days.  If you have an email account or have been on Facebook or even know someone else who does, you have probably heard the jokes about how cats and dogs view their days.  Well Max takes that very familiar joke and turns it into a powerful example of what he is teaching about in this chapter.  Thanks to him I almost want to go through my days saying, ‘Oh boy, ____ — my favorite.’ about everything!  Almost.  Max makes 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 come alive.  What he shares about Matthew Henry I can relate to, but what he tells about Sidney Connell is beyond amazing to me, and the quote from Robert Updegraff is something every worker world-wide should take to heart.

‘Forgiveness For Bitter Days’ is the title for Chapter four.  Max shines some light on the inner chambers of our heart and shows us things that might be there and explains the dangers of them being there in a way that few of us I am guessing have ever seen them.  The word pictures are priceless.  Even if you don’t have any of the things in your heart that he writes of the mental images makes what he is talking about so understandable and tangible, but he doesn’t stop there, that is just the first part, he then very graphically shows through scripture what to do to overcome those dangers.  He also points a couple of things out about the person in the passage of scripture that he quotes that I had never seen nor heard before.  This chapter, really like each of them, is jam-packed with examples, scriptures, insights, and encouragement.

On to Section two and entrusting your day to His oversight.  This is less than two pages long, but he writes of an experience he had in the ocean that illustrates his point vividly.

Chapter five is ‘Peace For Anxious Days’.  It starts off listing the advantages of anxiety.  Trust me, he pulls it off, and with style.  I like the line, “Worry is to joy what a Hoover vacuum cleaner is to dirt:….” (sorry can’t give away all the good stuff.) Next Max suggests that Jesus offers us a powerful way to take worry out and goes on to prove it.  I love the way he first illustrates his point with scripture, then illustrates it with a personal experience, then pulls the two together and pulls the reader into the equation to tie it all up for us and show us how we too can trust God.  I like the quotes he shares from Montaigne and Corrie ten Boom on the subject.  Again the multitude of examples, quotes, and scriptures, in this chapter are mind-boggling but everything flows together so effortlessly for the reader.  The whole book just flows and is easy to follow.

Chapter six is ‘Hope For Catastrophic Days’.  Max shows us how we can trust God when we are ‘bumped off course’.  The examples he shares in this chapter are very powerful.  Want to know how Paul could be ‘Unfairly arrested. Unkindly treated.’ Have an ‘Uncharted future.’ And yet have ‘unbridled joy.’?  Read this chapter.  The story of Joseph the unlikely greeter is a heart grabber.

Chapter seven calls for ‘Fuel For Depleted Days’.  Max shows us what to do when we are on empty.

Chapter eight was really close to home for me in many ways.  ‘Faith For Fear-Filled Days’.  This wasn’t really my favorite chapter, but in a way it was probably the one I needed to read the most, or at least right up there with four or five others.  The whole book spoke to me and touched my heart, but this chapter reached a tender spot.

Section three encourages us to ‘Accept His Direction’.  Max uses a humorous story from his past to illustrate this point very well.

Chapter nine is about ‘Calling For Purposeless Days’.  Wow, what a chapter.  The scriptural illustration and the further illustrations from life today are so powerful, thought-provoking, and encouraging I felt empowered, uplifted, and guided toward finding my way to do what God has called me to do.

Chapter ten ‘Service For Fork-In-The-Road Days’. It seems every chapter starts with a powerful story or illustration and this one is no exception.  I found myself looking at the choices I have made very closely due to this chapter.

Finally the Conclusion.  ‘The Blade Of Uncommon Color.  Do you need a “blood transfusion for the soul”?  Reading the conclusion will show you. Plus give directions on how to fix the problem and be hope filled too.  In some ways this was another ‘ouch’ portion of the book for me, but even in the midst of the ache as he related his own painful experience I saw the point he was making and there was hope.

At the end of each chapter Max included a ‘Daily Compass’ that basically summarized the points of that chapter with eloquence.

After the conclusion he includes some notes for each chapter, then there is a discussion guide that covers each chapter and the rest of the book, the bulk of the book is a  thirty-day journey prepared by Lance Wubbels, called ‘Change Your Day, Change Your Life’.  Packed full of insight, encouragement, and calls to action.

Would I recommend this book to family, friends, strangers? YES!  YES! YES!  I hope that I’ve told you enough to whet your appetite and not enough to make you feel you don’t need to read it!

Great Day Every Day Book Cover Image

Other Reviews of “Great Day Every Day”

Purposes of Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a temporary digital copy of the book mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



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