Book Review: Crazy Busy – A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem

[This is a throwback article from August 3, 2014]

“Pride is the villain with a thousand faces”, says Kevin DeYoung. And fittingly, he starts the book by identifying his own pride and problems in being crazy busy.

It sounds like DeYoung had (and may still have) a very busy life, but through it all, by the grace of God, he seems to be killing his pride, reducing his anxiety, and welcoming his Jesus into the inevitable storms that arise in life. Hearing from his experiences of busyness and his humble attempt to explain what he’s learning from it all has proven to be both comforting and encouraging. But this (mercifully) short book is more of a helpful handbook than it is a biography.

It sounds like DeYoung had (and may still have) a very busy life, but through it all, by the grace of God, he seems to be killing his pride, reducing his anxiety, and welcoming his Jesus into the inevitable storms that arise in life. Hearing from his experiences of busyness and his humble attempt to explain what he’s learning from it all has proven to be both comforting and encouraging. But this (mercifully) short book is more of a helpful handbook than it is a biography.

DeYoung describes the Killer P’s of pride, helping us see that our jam-packed timetable, our tendency to double-book appointments, and our lack of rest isn’t just the result of poor time management, but it is often rooted in pride. These insights go deep into the heart, and help us to invite the Spirit to surgically remove the pride that so easily entangles (i.e. Power: “I need to stay busy because I need to stay in control”; Prestige: “If I keep pushing myself, I’ll finally be somebody. I’ll finally matter. I’ll finally arrive.”; Pity: We enjoy the sympathy we receive for enduring such heroic responsibilities).

In this short book, DeYoung brings much practical help, insight from scripture, with gospel-centered perspective and encouragement . He touches base on topics of: technology for the social media fanatics, parenting for the stressed out soccer-moms, people pleasing for the peer-pressured pastors, and devotions for the University students in the midst of exam-season. Pretty much, every chapter will most likely apply to everyone at one point in their lives. Though this is book is not a silver-bullet to fix all of our problems, it does serve like a compass and a map, to get a clearer view of our spiritual landscape, and to point us back to Christ.

If you’ve had someone ask you “how’s it going”, and you say “busy”, I’d recommend picking this up. Oh and while you’re at it, save your loved ones some time by picking them up a copy too!

As a part of this review, Crossway has graciously provided me with a complimentary copy of this book through Beyond the Page.

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