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Empty Promises: The Truth About You, Your Desires, and the Lies You're Believing

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Big fan!

I should probably just admit up front I'm a fan of Pete Wilson's writing style. I like his delivery in his first book, "Plan B" and I like it in this one. He weaves Scripture with real life examples and mixes thoroughly with his thoughts, expertise, and experiences. I f...
I should probably just admit up front I'm a fan of Pete Wilson's writing style. I like his delivery in his first book, "Plan B" and I like it in this one. He weaves Scripture with real life examples and mixes thoroughly with his thoughts, expertise, and experiences. I find it all to be inspiring, incredibly practical, and immediately applicable. At various points it's helped me process the past, in others it's added insight and endurance to the present, and still others have helped prepare me for the future.

"Empty Promises" covers a wide range of false promises that plaque us all. Everything from power and money to approval, religion, and even our own dreams and aspirations - 12 empty promises in all. He does such a good job of covering all the angles. if you haven't been lead astray by one of these promises i can almost guarantee that someone close to you has.

Here's an insight from the chapter on power:
While discussing the surrender that is necessary and citing the scriptural examples of Daniel and Jesus Psalm 46:10 is referenced - "Be still and know that I am God." We learn that the Hebrew word for "be still" has a literal meaning of "let go". The verse is really telling us to be still and let go. Let go of our desires to control, gain power, and control outcomes. Be still. And let go. We are not God.

"Empty Promises" is one of those books that can help you process, heal, prepare, inspire, learn, and grow.

posted by kd11 on August 1, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Sadly, Pete Wilson's book Empty Promises is full of empty promis

Sadly, Pete Wilson's book Empty Promises is full of empty promises and filled with mixed and confused theology and questionable teachings that are not grounded in scripture. Anyone who seeks solid doctrine and theology will have trouble with a book that quotes authors f...
Sadly, Pete Wilson's book Empty Promises is full of empty promises and filled with mixed and confused theology and questionable teachings that are not grounded in scripture. Anyone who seeks solid doctrine and theology will have trouble with a book that quotes authors from many conflicting theologies and denominations.

Wilson's book is full of conflicting theologies as he quotes from Calvinists and Arminians alike, seemingly not noticing or being aware of the fact that these guys teach opposite core theologies (something all pastors with any formal training should know). He quotes Calvinists like John Calvin, Timothy "Tim" Keller and John Piper VERSUS C.S. Lewis (Anglican/Catholic/mystic), Lewis Smedes (who reaches man deserves salvation and isn't such a bad sinner), Dallas Willard, Henry Nouwen (Anglican), Max Lucado (Church of Christ), John Ortberg, A.W. Tozer, N.T. Wright (Anglican), and Richard J. Foster (Quaker). How do you have 3 guys who teach the opposite of all the other guys and who would say the other guys are not biblical? How do you have quotes from at least 5 different denominations: Reformed, Anglicans, Catholics, Church of Christ and Quakers?

Rick Warren's forward. 1st sentence of the book: "Mother Teresa once observed that in India people are starving physically, but in American people are starving spiritually" (But people in India are more lost spiritually under the Hindu religion than America because at least we have Christianity.)

The good parts are: Wilson writes, "The question isn't "Do we worship" but "Who or what do we worship?" "Idolatry is when I look to something that does not have God's power to give me what only God has the power to give." He also touches on the fact that while some people claim that God is #1 in their lives, their lives prove that He really is not.

As you might expect from an author who doesn't hold to a solid core theology, this book is shallow and unbiblical and full of self-help. This entire book is 9 chapters full of examples of people who seek happiness in material and emotional things and only 2 chapters about instead putting God first. And the solution? Solitude, fasting and prayer. I hope most readers will realize the emptiness in such a works-based religion. On pg 19, Wilson teaches that we are to "invite God to help me know me." What happened to us humans knowing God? God's purpose is not to teach us about ourselves! How self-centered can we get? Who are we humans to insist that the almighty God is to serve us?

Disclaimer: I gave my honest review. I received this book from the publisher but a positive review was not required

posted by kamebear on April 6, 2012

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  • Posted July 5, 2012

    Useless and No Value Empty Promises dispels many truths about

    Useless and No Value


    Empty Promises dispels many truths about the meaning and value of promises. In the course of our daily journey, we often make promises that we oftentimes have to break. However, the author uses Scriptures to explain the word promises, and even how God’s promises are fulfilled in our lives. The author clarify that God’s promises to us are to mature us and not harm us, with God there is no stipulation for receiving the promises that was told to you. This book also deals with the value of words, we are to hold true to our words that we speak and never speak useless words with no value. According to the author, we have been led to believe that we can use our beauty and intellect to get what we want. Don’t be lead astray, we are to follow the Creator and hold his words as truth.


    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

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  • Posted June 10, 2012

    A Good Reality Check for Us All

    We all have idols in our lives–things we give more priority to than God. Maybe not all the time, but sometimes, at least, they exist. In Empty Promises: The Truth about You, Your Desires, and the lies You’re Believing, Pete Wilson takes an up-close look at some of the more common things we put faith in instead of God. Most of these are seemingly harmless things: achievement, approval, power, money, beauty, dreams, and even religion. The problem for most of us comes when we prioritize these desires over God. And when we do so, we feel empty. None of these other desires can vill us the way God can. They just leave us wanting more.

    Pete Wilson reminds us to seek God before all us. We were created in His image. When we fill the void in our hearts with things like power or money, we miss out on becoming who God created us to be. Wilson tells us that “we are what we worship.” If we worship empty promises, we become empty. If we worship God, we become who we were created to be.

    Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 [...] “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted June 6, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Pete Wilson, the senior pastor of Cross Point Church and the aut

    Pete Wilson, the senior pastor of Cross Point Church and the author of Plan B is back with another book. Empty Promises, The Truth About You, Your Desire, and the Lies You're Believing is designed to help the reader recognize and appreciate all that life blesses us with on those perfect, memorable days....




    ... and how to recognize and appreciate the dangers of the idols we create on our journey.



    Our life, counsels Pastor Wilson is shaped by the desires we energetically pursue. To give ourselves and our lives meaning and purpose we want the perfect family, the perfect career, the best house, and the right car in the driveway. We crave money, love, acceptance and an audience to notice our success. We desire power, we seek security, we value a smart business plan and hard work. And at the end of the week we demand the expected reward.



    These things are not necessarily wrong. Who among us doesn't want to love and be loved, to find satisfaction in a job well done and collect the paycheck to keep it all going.



    As a society we say we value honesty and the latest technology, we justify the means if the end results is the desired achievement. We want what we pay for.



    But what about what Jesus paid for?



    A well-lived life has a different meaning for Christians. We may say that nothing is more important to us than God. But do we really mean that all day and everyday? Is this belief the driving force in our life?



    If at the end of the day if "Chasing A Dream" (Chapter 9) and "The Seduction of Achievement" (Chapter 3) is leaving you restless and unfulfilled you it may be time to examine your practices.



    Pete Wilson has given us a practical and useful book for those seeking a true relationship with God. Although this book seems a bit hurried there is still much to be gained by asking and answering the questions posed in the "5 Traps" and "Living Close To Truth"(Chapter 11).


    I am a fan of Pastor Wilson's books, and strongly recommend you read this one.

    This book was supplied by the publisher, Thomas Nelson, for review purposes. The words contained in this review are my own.

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  • Posted May 31, 2012

    In the book Empty Promises by Pete Wilson the problem of the dec

    In the book Empty Promises by Pete Wilson the problem of the deceptive power of idolatry is put into a modern day reality. Wilson unpacks how Christians today fall for the empty misconception that achievement, approval, power, money, religion, beauty, or even chasing one’s dreams will bring us the happiness that only God can give. The reader is made aware of the fact that a daily walk with Christ is a daily recognition and denial of the idols that want to pull our heart away from Him.
    As a pastor myself, I would recommend this book to any believer that wants to become more aware of the true power of idols in everyday life. Wilson does a great job conveying the biblical truth of God’s desire to be our only object of worship and the emptiness that comes from replacing Him for other things. The reader will be intrigued by the personal stories and applications the Wilson incorporates throughout the book. Overall, I think this book will help any Christian learn how to grow deeper with the Lord by making them aware of the subtle attraction of things and the power of Christ to overcome.

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  • Posted April 17, 2012

    This is a book review of Empty Promises by Pete Wilson Being a

    This is a book review of Empty Promises by Pete Wilson

    Being a former proponent of the Prosperity Gospel, I was instantly attracted to this book, from the moment that I read its description. The fact that the author, Pastor Pete Wilson, was bold enough to right a book like this, in a society where people judge everything by materialism, is commendable in itself. The book gives the reader practical and applicable ways to break away from empty pursuits and start seeking God instead of materialism.

    This book was well written when it comes to story-telling and it challenged me in many areas. It also reaffirmed that materialism isn’t everything and that almost everyone deals with idol worship in some area. But along with the book’s strengths comes weaknesses. The author seemed to have had mixed feelings about some of the issues and his theology seemed to either be unstable or very diverse. It also appeared that the author often quoted more theologians than verses and wrote about more stories than doctrines. Nonetheless, I believe the book's strengths outweigh weaknesses.

    Overall, the book was good and I commend the author’s boldness when it comes to addressing materialism and worshiping idols. I truly enjoyed this read and would recommend this book to anyone, especially those who feel consumed with a constant want of material possessions.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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    Posted March 21, 2013

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    Posted December 3, 2013

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