“This is neither theory nor theological wrangling. It’s an excavation of the heart. A rescue mission to steal back the truth of us.”
–Charles Martin, New York Times bestselling author
Though I’ve navigated many acute moments of wilderness survival—from storms at sea to lighting strikes, hurricane-speed winds in the high alpine of the Colorado Rockies to close encounters with grizzlies in the Yukon Territory—nothing to date has been as challenging as a seemingly innocuous adventure my wife and I took sixteen years ago: an eleven-hour drive to a week-long camping trip in Yellowstone National Park with our eight-week-old son.
No parenting book I’ve found recommends that sort of camping trip with an infant and a nursing mom. But some combination of new-parent sleep deprivation and a longing to immerse our son and ourselves in the comfort and expanse of wilderness made this trip seem like a perfectly reasonable choice. At the time.
Looking in the rearview mirror at that woefully unsuccessful yet life-infused trip, I remember that what most nurtured us was not the much anticipated wildlife encounters (they didn’t line up with the nap schedule) or the iconic lingering by a campfire (the volume of our son’s crying against the background of the otherwise quiet campground compelled us to bail on campfires in order to preserve some evening ambiance for our fellow adventure seekers). What brought life to us on that trip was being swept up into an audiobook that captured and reoriented our hearts during the endless hours of driving we did while our infant son napped (the car, rather than the tent, turned out to be his preferred sleeping environment). Those hours of driving along the scenic byways, taking in the expansive and magnificent beauty of the Teton Range of the Rocky Mountains, were moments of eternity piercing our seemingly ordinary lives. Our son could rest, and my wife and I could be saturated in hope and vision by a mentor and guide who, through his compelling and intimate audiobook, reformed and renewed a vision for life not only for that week but one that remains deeply at work in our lives to this day.
Ever since that trip, my heart has been captured by audiobooks. For each of our family trips, the Spirit has provided a unique audiobook that ended up shaping the trip and, in hindsight, often embodied the whole of that particular season of our family story.
The poignancy of a particular audiobook is true not only for our family trips but for my personal adventures as well. On these trips, it’s as if the author becomes an intimate traveling companion, interacting with me along every mile of the way. In that sense, Dallas Willard was with me when I ventured decades ago into the Gila National Forest in New Mexico, first introducing me to the path of pervasive inner transformation through Renovation of the Heart. Richard Swenson sat shotgun on a trip along the Front Range, providing me, through his much-needed book Margin, with orienting and essential counsel for our times of accelerated progress. Parker Palmer accompanied me to Colorado’s Western Slope with the presence of a loving grandfather, offering vision and hope in some of my darkest hours through his treasured A Hidden Wholeness.
Since that heroic venture to camping with our son, audiobooks have become a centerpiece in my apprenticeship in Kingdom living. It was G. K. Chesterton who said that every generation loses the Gospel, and every generation is charged with its recovery. The voices and lives of heroic men and women who have gone before me, expressed in audiobooks, have helped me recover the path to becoming, through God’s grace, a wholehearted and trustworthy king.
When I set out to write Becoming a King, I was fueled by the anticipation of personally recording the audiobook and connecting each reader soul to soul with this deeply hopeful and practical message. I believe that, in time, it will rescue lives.
The heart of Becoming a King is what I have discovered since I started asking this question twenty years ago: What’s the most important thing? Over two decades ago, the Spirit initiated a quest in me to find the answer.
What I found was not what I expected, and where I found it was in the most unanticipated places. With the quest came a restored strength and an unshakable hope.
The answer turned out to be not a thing at all, but a path. A path and a process to becoming who God meant when he created each one of us.
Recording the Becoming a King audiobook allowed me to walk with God to offer unique reflections, shepherd readers through extended prayers, and, in closing, outline a way to go even deeper with the message. In addition, I felt led to capture an exclusive conversation with four of the men who have walked shoulder to shoulder with me along the path of becoming a king, consenting to this process for more than a decade. This audiobook exclusive conversation allows listeners to connect soul to soul with men who have lived the message and bear witness to the promises available for those who choose to risk consenting to the narrow path and process that leads to life.
After you dive into the audiobook, you can travel even further through the video series, study guide, and more. It’s all available at BecomingAKing.com.
God is pursuing you. He is at work. Next comes your response. The greatest revolution in human history began through twelve courageous souls saying yes to a personal invitation from the King of kings to recover the ancient path. It’s not easy, it’s not cheap, and it’s not quick. The path is made available to all, but few choose it. It has always been so.
It is my joy and sacred trust to share this ancient path with you.
For the Kingdom of God,
P. S. Quite a few allies have been purchasing quantities for reaching men and women in their world. We are very grateful and reached out to the publisher to see if we could secure additional discounts. They offered an exclusive promotion through June 15th – 50% off and free shipping for all Becoming a King resources (study guide, book, audio book, video) for bulk orders of any combination totaling 50 items or more. If you have an upcoming event or want to help us reach wide and far, you can contact their reps, Alicia and Eric, directly. Thanks!