Book Review- 21 Seconds to Change Your World by Dr. Mark Rutland
Dr. Rutland starts this book off by describing a period of deep and dark depression that he found himself in. The irony of this is that Dr. Mark had found success in almost everything that he had done. He turned around a failing mega church after the previous pastor’s moral failure. He also took two Christian universities on the brink of collapse and turned them around as well. These were three very high-profile successes and led to Rutland’s bestselling book ReLaunch: How to Stage an Organizational Comeback.
Success, however, always brings its own set of challenges. Rutland says, “Fatigue, toxic success, and, subsequently, depression had subverted my soul. I had quite simply gotten lost and pitched headlong into this pit of despair.” (page 17)
21 Seconds to Change Your World- Finding God’s ealing and Abundance Through Prayer is the story of how Rutland found his way again. For anyone who has struggled with depression, they know that prayer can be difficult. Depression seems to raise walls around us and isolates us from loved ones, but also isolates us from God.
It was during this dark time of his soul that Dr. Rutland rediscovered two ancient documents. One was a two thousand year old prayer given by a Jewish rabbi and the other was a three thousand year old poem penned by a Jewish king. The Lord’s prayer, found in Matthew 6: 9-13 and the Psalm 23 are staples of many Christian religious services.
Their misuse, however, has in many cases led to them being discarded. The Lord’s Prayer has been overused in many traditional churches and even used as a punishment in the Catholic Church. “Pray twenty Our Fathers and do something nice for someone this week.”
In 21 Seconds to Change Your World, Rutland describes how the Lord’s Prayer became the lifeline that pulled him out of the pit of depression. He began praying the prayer multiple times a day. He would often pray it slowly, working through and meditating on each section. As he did, God began to heal him.
Not long after this Dr. Mark discovered how similar Psalm 23 and the Lord’s Prayer are. It was almost like Jesus had this psalm in mind as he gave us his prayer. The Lord’s Prayer and Psalm 23 cover many of the same topics and complement each other very well.
It was in the 23rd Psalm that Rutland’s healing was completed. As he prayed through this beautiful poem, he came to the line, “He restores my soul.” In meditating on this verse, his soul was restored. As a pastor myself, I could not agree more with Dr. Mark when he says that soul restoration is the greatest need in our society today. People pay billions of dollars a year for therapy and anti-depression drugs. God has been in the business of restoring and healing people’s souls for many years. If we would only give him a chance, we could find our souls restored as well.
I highly recommend Dr. Rutland’s book. I really believe that 21 Seconds to Change Your World is one of the most powerful books on prayer on the market. Last year, I also reviewed Pastor Jurgen Matthesius’ book on prayer, PUSH: Pray Until Something Happens. If you want to take your prayer life to another level, get these books!
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For your’s is the kingdom and the power and the glory,
David and Annie are serving the Lord in Brazil. They are training leaders and helping plant churches. Would you consider joining their team? Just click here to get involved. Obrigado!