Moment Maker by Carlos Whittaker

I recently read Carlos Whittaker’s new book, Moment Maker. Within just a few pages, it was clear that Carlos and I have very different approaches to life. I see my life as a series of dots on a timeline. Carlos seems to see a winding path with an undisclosed destination. I plan each moment of the day – including when I would write this review. Carlos seems to make a plan with the hopes of seeing it broken. I seek to create structure and clarity. Carlos seeks to create art and surprise.

While it is clear that God designed Carlos and I very differently, Moment Maker inspired me to be more alert to the unexpected moments that God may have for my life. Carlos describes three types of moments in his book:

Created Moments. These are moments we make to enhance someone else’s life
Received Moments. These are moments we experience that enhance our own lives
Rescued Moments. These are moments we make to repair a broken moment with someone else.

As Carlos describes each of these three, he approaches the tension between living on purpose and living without a plan. Often those two concepts seem at odds with each other. However, Carlos would seem to argue that living with purpose requires us to hold our plans with a loose grip, ready to trade them for unexpected opportunities at a moment’s notice.

As for his writing style, anyone who has discovered knows that Carlos is extremely engaging (and legitimately fun!) Moment Maker serves as a collection of fascinating short stories pulled from all seasons of the author’s life. These stories are not simple illustrations of points. Instead, they serve as the very foundations of the points themselves. I generally glance over authors’ personal illustrations but these are simply un-skippable. If you consider yourself highly conservative, a couple of his stories may make you a bit uncomfortable. But the principles embedded within them will certainly inspire you to live a fuller life.

In short, through Moment Maker, Carlos pulled me into a style of living that is far from my own and inspired me to begin weaving intentional spontaneity within each day. I am looking forward to creating, receiving, and rescuing moments that I would otherwise not have recognized.

I highly recommend this book to any church leader, especially those with a bent toward planning. You can pick up a copy right here.

[By the way, I am required to share that I received a complimentary copy of Moment Maker from the publisher. The source of my copy in no way influenced my perspective. It really is great!]

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Ryan Stigile