Well, folks, I have great news: as of today, my new book, Reimagine Retirement: Planning and Living for the Glory of God, has been released by B&H Publishing (LifeWay)!
It is a project I have been working on for about 18 months, and I am thrilled to announce that it is available to order from LifeWay.com, Amazon.com, Christianbook.com, and other retail booksellers.
You can get more information about the book and links to all the places it is available here.
What's it about?
Just what the sub-title says: "Planning and living for the glory of God." I might also describe the book this way: Larry Burkett, Dave Ramsey, and Ron Blue meet John Piper, Randy Alcorn, and Tim Keller.
I say that because these are men whom I highly regard and respect, who have affected me personally, and who have significantly influenced my thinking about retirement and how I treat the subject in the book.
Piper, Alcorn, and Keller have influenced my biblical perspective on work and retirement, while the wise teaching from men like Burkett, Ramsey, and Blue have shaped my views on the financial planning and stewardship aspects.
I think the book is unique in that it takes a "head" (information and education) – "heart" (beliefs, values, and priorities) – and "hands" (planning and practical living) approach in dealing with this important topic from a distinctly Christian (and, I think, a reasonably balanced) perspective.
People retire for different reasons. Some because they want to (so that they can pursue other things), and others because they have to (perhaps due to a layoff, poor health, family issues, etc.). Although work is a good gift from God, most of us will "retire" someday, even if its to pursue some other kind of work (with or without pay). Therefore, this is a very important and timely subject, especially for the "baby boomers" who are retiring at a rate of 10,000 per day!
There are some excellent Christian books on retirement out there (I have read many of them), but I believe that there are very few that are as broad or in-depth as this one. Some tend to focus mainly on either the "softer" subjects of retirement—the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual aspects—or the "harder" (financial planning) areas of saving, investing, and generating income in retirement, but not both.
If you are a long-time reader of this blog, you will see topics and themes in the book that I have written about here. I have re-purposed some blog content here and there, but even then, I go much more in-depth in those areas. Plus, the book is, obviously, highly structured and has a "flow" to it that the blog does not. To give you an idea of how the book is organized, here is the Table of Contents:
PART ONE: REIMAGINE YOUR PERSPECTIVE ON RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 1 – UNDERSTANDING MODERN RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 2 – EXPLORING WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 3 – IMAGINING A GOD-GLORIFYING RETIREMENT
PART TWO: REIMAGINE YOUR PLAN FOR RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 4 – PLANNING FOR A REIMAGINED RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 5 – SAVING FOR RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 6 – INVESTING FOR RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 7 – DECIDING TO RETIRE
PART THREE: REIMAGINE YOUR LIFE IN RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 8 – FUNDING YOUR RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 9 – LIVING IN RETIREMENT
CHAPTER 10 – LIVING AND LEAVING A LEGACY
APPENDIX – RESOURCES
Who's it for?
I targeted the book at Christians interested in planning for and living in retirement. However, non-Christians may also find something to like as the book contains a lot of practical guidance that may be helpful to anyone who is thinking about retirement.
I think the book will have a particular appeal to Gen Xers and Baby Boomers, i.e., those in their early 40s to late 60s. That said, I hope that the practical, God-centered vision I cast in the book will resonate with younger people as well. Plus, it never too early to start thinking the future; no matter how far off it may seem, Millennials will find it helpful as well.
More than half of the book is devoted to the practical aspects of planning for and living in retirement. That can help anyone, even those just starting, to wisely plan for retirement sometime in the future. I put a focus on "demystifying" the more complex areas of saving and investing, which may be of help to millennials and Gen. Xers. Whereas other things I cover, like Social Security, Medicare, and legacy planning, may be more helpful to the Boomer crowd.
I invite you to order a copy and then let me know what you think. I would appreciate any reviews (although I prefer positive ones, you have to be honest, I guess).
What's with the upside-down palm tree?
Some people who have seen the book cover ask me about the upside-down palm tree. The idea of the cover graphic (thanks to B&H Publishing Group's great designers) is to show our traditional, worldly view of retirement turned upside-down. I think it's pretty clever. But before you get too worried, nowhere in the book do I suggest that I think it's wrong to enjoy some fun and leisure time in retirement (which may include spending some time under the shade of a palm tree on the beach); I have done so myself. What I try to do is to make a case for a God-centered and biblically informed view of retirement that makes serving God and others the priority while also planning for periods of fun and rest as well.
In a future article, I may share a little more about how the book came to be. It's a story of God's kindness and that of others who took an interest and provided much support and assistance along the way. For an obscure blogger like me, who has never published a book, to get a book published by B&H Publishing Group (LifeWay) doesn't happen without a LOT of help, for which I will always be grateful.
This book kept me pretty busy, and I have another one on the way (more about that later). I am very busy with a lot of things, but I plan to continue to post an article every couple of weeks or so, just as I have been doing steadily for over four years. Thanks for being a faithful reader. I hope and pray that you have been informed, inspired, and helped by the blog, and should you get the book; I trust it does the same.