Breaking the Rules: Trading Performance for Intimacy with God, By Fil Anderson alt

Breaking the Rules

Trading Performance for Intimacy with God

by Fil Anderson
Foreword by Brennan Manning

Breaking the Rules
  • Length: 240 pages
  • Published: February 17, 2010
  • Imprint: IVP
  • Item Code: 7925
  • ISBN: 9780830879250

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After years of living with a set of religious demands that he could never live up to, Fil Anderson found himself spiritually bankrupt and emotionally drained. Following a crash-and-burn in professional ministry, he experienced relief in learning to be with God rather than doing for God. Instead of desperation, he found healing, and a rich new life with God.

In Breaking the Rules, Fil invites us to explore what happens when good religion turns bad. At such times we are weighed down with expectations of what it takes to be "right with God"--whether it is the expectations of others, holding up under pressure, fixing what's wrong or accomplishing big things for God.

When we set aside this false agenda, we find the courage to confess our fears and insecurities. We taste the depths of God's love for us. Here is an opportunity to quit trusting in your own ability to live for God, and simply trust in God instead.

"Breaking the Rules captures the essence of what makes Christianity impossible--and how a wild, unpredictable but authentic relationship with Jesus is the only cure for what ails us. Bracingly honest, these pages will haunt you in the best way possible. I recommend you read them slowly . . . and savor."

Paula Rinehart, author of Strong Women, Soft Hearts

"Breaking the Rules will be like a defibrillator on many hearts which are more dead than alive and restorative to many souls that are lost in the maze of religion rather than in a life-giving relationship with a loving God. Fil Anderson has extended an invitation to live outside the box of religion. I hope you will accept it. If you are more 'churched' than transformed, then this book is for you!"

Stephen W. Smith, author of The Lazarus Life and The Transformation of a Man's Heart

"With precision, patience and vulnerability Fil beckons us to let go of the life-crushing burdens of religion in exchange for the freedom of God's reckless love."

Nathan Foster, author of Wisdom Chaser

"Finally, relief for tired and weary souls. Fil leads leaders to an intimacy with Jesus that does not require unbending rule-keeping. Written with honesty and compassion, readers can identify with Fil's own struggles and have reason to hope they too can plunge into the depths of God's love for us. If you are ready to experience intimacy, freedom and grace, this is the book for you."

Tom Wilson, president and CEO, OneHundredX, Leadership Network and Halftime

"Few words are as misused today as intimacy. Break it down and to most people it means 'into me I see.' Fil Anderson shows us not only how the word really breaks down--'you're invited into a relational encounter with God'--he also shows us how to embrace the one thing our hearts desire most."

Leonard Sweet, author of So Beautiful: Divine Designs for Life and the Church

"By unveiling the authentic Jesus--One more true to the biblical witness than the religious rule-abiding killjoy whom too many of our churches have inadvertently endorsed--Fil Anderson opens readers' eyes to the unbridled goodness of the God who knows us and loves us exactly as we are. Anderson's message is irresistible!"

Margot Starbuck, author of The Girl in the Orange Dress

"Breaking the Rules heralds the shattering truth that the transcendent God who became visible in Jesus Christ furiously longs for intimacy with us. It assures worn out and weary religious strivers that their life can be recovered. . . . If you plan on reading just one book this year on Jesus, this is the book that you must read."

From the foreword by Brennan Manning, author of The Ragamuffin Gospel

"Anyone who has ever felt suffocated by the rules of religion will benefit from this book."

Church Libraries, Summer 2010


Foreword by Brennan Manning


Introduction: Breaking the Rules
1 Is Your Faith in God or Religion?
2 The Myth that Jesus Thinks Like Us
3 Beauty in Brokenness
4 What's a Picture Worth?
5 Right Rules or Right Relationship?
6 Worse than Blindness
7 Why This Waste?
8 Doing What We Can
9 The Gift of Memory
10 Throwing In the Towel on Religion



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Fil Anderson

Fil Anderson is a spiritual director, conference speaker, writer, and retreat leader trained through the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation. He is the founder of Journey Resources and author of Running on Empty: Contemplative Spirituality for Overachievers. He also contributed to Transformation of a Man's Heart: Reflections on the Masculine Journey. Educated at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington and Fuller Theological Seminary, Fil served on the staff of Young Life for twenty-five years. Fil and his wife live in Greensboro. They are the parents of three adult children. For more information and to contact Fil, please visit Journey Resources.