I’ve always appreciated Matt Perman. When he worked for Desiring God, I consulted with him on an important issue we were facing in church life and found him to be full of wisdom with theological support. I’ve also benefitted from his time at other conferences. He’s been approachable and always, in my interactions with him, been seeking to live out what he’s now written in this book, so I would highly recommend this book.
What is this book? It’s entitled What’s Best Next. How The Gospel Transforms The Way You Get Things Done. It’s a book on how the Gospel informs productivity and, admittedly, Matt believes he’s written something that is unique. I can’t find a weakness in this book. I’m one of those people who find themselves where the knives go in the knife drawer. I’m an organized person and have some borderline disorder tendencies when it comes to order (just ask those close to me). I’ve read books on productivity, getting things done and maximizing my life and time. But, in this book, the great content of those books is fused with a life that exists for something eternal: God’s glory and the good of people.
I’ve already given away 3 copies of this book and we’re considering using it as a Sunday School text at our church. I think many could benefit from so many specifics in this book. It breaks into 7 parts: 1) Making God Supreme in Productivity, 2) Gospel Driven Productivity: A New Way to Look at Getting Things Done, 3) Define: Know What’s Most Important, 4) Architect: Create a Flexible Structure, 5) Reduce: Free Up Your Time for What’s Most Important, 6) Execute: Do What’s Most Important, 7) Living This Out. Matt’s style of writing is easy to read and includes helpful summaries and blocks at the end of each chapter and for the book as a whole at the end.
There are so many great recommendations and practical outworkings in this book. My favorite parts were the first 2 parts where a theological foundation is laid for why we should be productive and how this is about more than self-serving tendencies. It’s about wielding all of our time and energy in a way so that God is glorified and people are served. These are things that are worth giving your life for and are eternal. They’re in desperate need of being Gospel-informed. Matt gives these connections and from there presses us into application (which is another super-helpful feature of this book). It will not be my go-to book when I’m stuck in slow progress and evaluating how to maximize my time and energies.
I hope you’ll read and allow God to stir your heart through Matt’s service to us. What a blessing to have this book. Now, there’s only one question: What’s Best Next?