The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?

The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?

4.2 474
by Rick Warren

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Translated into over 50 languages, The Purpose Driven Life is far more than just a book; it is a guide to a spiritual journey that has transformed millions of lives. Once you take this journey, you'll never be the same again.

This new, expanded edition of The Purpose Driven Life, created for a new generation of reader, includes:

  • Video introductions

…  See more details below


Translated into over 50 languages, The Purpose Driven Life is far more than just a book; it is a guide to a spiritual journey that has transformed millions of lives. Once you take this journey, you'll never be the same again.

This new, expanded edition of The Purpose Driven Life, created for a new generation of reader, includes:

  • Video introductions by Rick Warren to chapters 1-42
  • An audio Bible study at the end of each chapter, with over 30 additional hours of teaching by Rick Warren.
  • Two new bonus chapters on the most common barriers to living a purpose driven life.
  • Access to an online community where you can discuss your journey to purpose, get feedback, and receive support.

On your journey you'll find the answers to 3 of life's most important questions:

The Question of Existence:
Why am I alive?

The Question of Significance:
Does my life matter?

The Question of Purpose:
What on earth am I here for?

Transform your life. Start your journey today.

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Editorial Reviews

In 40 brief chapters (each of which can read as a daily devotional), Rick Warren answers the age-old questions: Why am I here? What is my purpose? Asserting that our responses to those quandaries must start with God, he explains how we can achieve fulfillment by enacting His plan.

Product Details

Publication date:
Purpose Driven Life Series
Edition description:
Unabridged, 8 CDs
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Read an Excerpt

It All Starts with God

For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, ... everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.

Colossians 1: 16 (Msg)

Unless you assume a God, the question of life's purpose is meaningless.

Bertrand Russell, atheist

It's not about you.

The purpose of your life is far greater than your own personal fulfillment, your peace of mind, or even your happiness. It's far greater than your family, your career, or even your wildest dreams and ambitions. If you want to know why you were placed on this planet, you must begin with God. You were born by his purpose and for his purpose.

The search for the purpose of life has puzzled people for thousands of years. That's because we typically begin at the wrong starting point--ourselves. We ask self-centered questions like What do I want to be? What should I do with my life? What are my goals, my ambitions, my dreams for my future? But focusing on ourselves will never reveal our life's purpose. The Bible says, "It is God who directs the lives of his creatures; everyone's life is in his power."

Contrary to what many popular books, movies, and seminars tell you, you won't discover your life's meaning by looking within yourself. You've probably tried that already. You didn't create yourself, so there is no way you can tell yourself what you were created for! If I handed you an invention you had never seen before, you wouldn't know its purpose, and the invention itself wouldn't be able to tell you either. Only the creator or the owner's manual could reveal its purpose.

I once got lost in the mountains. When I stopped to ask for directions to the campsite, I was told, "You can't get there from here. You must start from the other side of the mountain!" In the same way, you cannot arrive at your life's purpose by starting with a focus on yourself. You must begin with God, your Creator. You exist only because God wills that you exist. You were made by God and for God--and until you understand that, life will never make sense. It is only in God that we discover our origin, our identity, our meaning, our purpose, our significance, and our destiny. Every other path leads to a dead end.

Many people try to use God for their own self-actualization, but that is a reversal of nature and is doomed to failure. You were made for God, not vice versa, and life is about letting God use you for his purposes, not your using him for your own purpose. The Bible says, "Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life."

I have read many books that suggest ways to discover the purpose of my life. All of them could be classified as "self-help" books because they approach the subject from a self-centered viewpoint. Self-help books, even Christian ones, usually offer the same predictable steps to finding your life's purpose: Consider your dreams. Clarify your values. Set some goals. Figure out what you are good at. Aim high. Go for it! Be disciplined. Believe you can achieve your goals. Involve others. Never give up.

Of course, these recommendations often lead to great success. You can usually succeed in reaching a goal if you put your mind to it. But being successful and fulfilling your life's purpose are not at all the same issue! You could reach all your personal goals, becoming a raving success by the world's standard, and still miss the purposes for which God created you. You need more than self-help advice. The Bible says, "Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self." 3

This is not a self-help book. It is not about finding the right career, achieving your dreams, or planning your life. It is not about how to cram more activities into an overloaded schedule. Actually, it will teach you how to do less in life--by focusing on what matters most. It is about becoming what God created you to be.

How, then, do you discover the purpose you were created for? You have only two options. Your first option is speculation. This is what most people choose. They conjecture, they guess, they theorize. When people say, "I've always thought life is . . .," they mean, "This is the best guess I can come up with."

For thousands of years, brilliant philosophers have discussed and speculated about the meaning of life. Philosophy is an important subject and has its uses, but when it comes to determining the purpose of life, even the wisest philosophers are just guessing.

Dr. Hugh Moorhead, a philosophy professor at Northeastern Illinois University, once wrote to 250 of the best-known philosophers, scientists, writers, and intellectuals in the world, asking them, "What is the meaning of life?" He then published their responses in a book. Some offered their best guesses, some admitted that they just made up a purpose for life, and others were honest enough to say they were clueless. In fact, a number of famous intellectuals asked Professor Moorhead to write back and tell them if he discovered the purpose of life!

Fortunately, there is an alternative to speculation about the meaning and purpose of life. It's revelation. We can turn to what God has revealed about life in his Word. The easiest way to discover the purpose of an invention is to ask the creator of it. The same is true for discovering your life's purpose: Ask God.

God has not left us in the dark to wonder and guess. He has clearly revealed his five purposes for our lives through the Bible. It is our Owner's Manual, explaining why we are alive, how life works, what to avoid, and what to expect in the future. It explains what no self-help or philosophy book could know. The Bible says, "God's wisdom . . . goes deep into the interior of his purposes. . . . It's not the latest message, but more like the oldest--what God determined as the way to bring out his best in us." 5

God is not just the starting point of your life; he is the source of it. To discover your purpose in life you must turn to God's Word, not the world's wisdom. You must build your life on eternal truths, not pop psychology, success-motivation, or inspirational stories. The Bible says, "It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone." 6 This verse gives us three insights into your purpose.

1. You discover your identity and purpose through a relationship with Jesus Christ. If you don't have such a relationship, I will later explain how to begin one.

2. God was thinking of you long before you ever thought about him. His purpose for your life predates your conception. He planned it before you existed, without your input! You may choose your career, your spouse, your hobbies, and many other parts of your life, but you don't get to choose your purpose.

3. The purpose of your life fits into a much larger, cosmic purpose that God has designed for eternity. That's what this book is about.

Andrei Bitov, a Russian novelist, grew up under an atheistic Communist regime. But God got his attention one dreary day. He recalls, "In my twenty-seventh year, while riding the metro in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) I was overcome with a despair so great that life seemed to stop at once, preempting the future entirely, let alone any meaning. Suddenly, all by itself, a phrase appeared: Without God life makes no sense. Repeating it in astonishment, I rode the phrase up like a moving staircase, got out of the metro and walked into God's light."

You may have felt in the dark about your purpose in life. Congratulations, you're about to walk into the light.



Point to Ponder: It's not about me.

Verse to Remember: "Everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him." Colossians 1: 16b (Msg)

Question to Consider: In spite of all the advertising around me, how can I remind myself that life is really about living for God, not myself?

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The Purpose Driven Life (Enhanced Edition) 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 474 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I first read The Purpose Driven Life, I was a born-again Christian. I don't like tags but that is the best description I can give. I had attended church most of my life but drifted away. In my mid-40s, I began searching. I felt empty. When a friend recommended Warren's book, I read it, following the 40-day journey plan. I have recommended and bought copies for people. It is not the Bible but it helped me to understand many things not only about God but myself and my relationship with Him. Some may not find it enlightening but I believe that if you read it with an open mind, you will learn more about God and your relationship with Him. The book is easy to follow. I have gone through it four times. Each time I read it, I find something new to think about.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read A Purpose Driven Life by Rev. Rick Warren two years ago. I came away frustrated because after nine months of struggling with the forty day program, I still didn't feel I had a purpose in life. The fault didn't lie in Rev. Warren's book; it was in my thought process.I thought the book was all about finding the perfect job. I hoped God would speak when I opened the book (like one of those musical Hallmark cards) and that He would name my perfect career. Not so. Practically speaking, career assesment tests do a much better job. God kept pretty quiet as to whether I would make a better secretary or bellhop.What I did find after reading The Purpose Driven Life was a deeper relationship with God. This relationship opened the door to understanding (eventually) what my life purpose is. I finally realized that my life's purpose is unique to me. It's not a job, per se, but a calling to do God's will.When I discerned my purpose, mission, calling - I realized that as long as I centered my work in God's will then it didn't matter if I was a cabdriver, a barista at Starbucks, a grade school librarian, or a life coach. I can (and should) serve God in my unique way at work, at home, no matter where I am.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rick Warren's, 'A Purpose Driven Life,' will certainly make you ponder and reflect on the life you're leading. From the very beginning of the book, I found myself drawn into his beliefs. People often question, 'What in the world are we on this Earth for?' or 'What is our purpose?' 'Does life make sense?' Of course, no one alive knows the true answer. It is in our own belief system. Some criticize his views. However, he has a right to his own belief system. I found myself connecting with him from page one. Having gone through medical adversities in life within my family, I understand what he is trying to convey to the reader. When bad things happen to people they ask the question, 'WHY ME, WHY NOW? However, WHY NOT ME? My belief system is that God does have a master plan that we will never understand. Many people do believe that we are here for a purpose and everything happens for a reason. I've had that experience many times in my life. The right person will enter my life to help me or a family member through a difficult adversity. Or a book will show up on the store bookshelf that will suggest the perfect solution to my problem. I believe that certain things 'good and bad' happen for a reason. Otherwise, this unpredictable world wouldn't make sense. Since I have experienced adversity 'as we all have', and have found some joy out of the difficult situations in life, I agree with Rick Warren about God's plan for us. It gives me solace and peace knowing that God does have a plan for our lives. People think they can escape adversity. But no where in the Bible does it say that life will be all sunshine. There will surely be rainy days. It reinforced my own belief system and I highly recommend this book just to wake people up to let them know that life has meaning. We are here for a purpose. Let us not forget what our purpose is in this life.If we all acted with more compassion and acceptance, our world would be a much better place to live in. Nancy A. Draper Author of 'A Burden of Silence: My Mother's Battle with AIDS'
JavaLady08 More than 1 year ago
This book was given to my husband by his mother as a Christmas gift. For the longest time it just sat on our book case collecting dust until I got curious and flipped open the first page. The author outines a 40 day inspirational quest to finding the readers God given Purpose on earth. Every section includes thought provoking questions and motivational and inspirational biblical verses. It really doesn't matter what off shoot of Christianity the reader ascribes to it is truly for every Christian. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is a new believer in God and more so for the those who are looking for a deeper more fulfilling way to serve God. Don't wonder, Don't waiver, Don't wait get this book its really great.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a Christian who enjoys reading books like the Chicken Soup series. However, this book is not like those at all. Each chapter starts off with a quote from the Bible which is then twisted and analyzed. Warren writes as if he is writing through divine inspiration and his word is fact. While he does give some good advice, in most of the passages the meaning is either overt in what he is 'explaining,' or purely opinion with no real support other than other Bible passages quoted out of context. Also, he constantly mentions that he founded Saddleback church which becomes annoyingly vain as he talks about the importance of being humble. Ultimately, the question the book asks is never even answered. Read the Bible instead of readings quotes from it that are explained poorly.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The premise of this book is a simple one: a 40 day journey of exploration and inner contemplation as to how to life one's life led by author Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Valley Church. The book is written in simple language that almost anybody can understand, and as a result, the pages turn at an alarming rate. However, despite the short read, the book does make clever use of Christian doctrine combined with strategic implementation with Bible passages to provide moral guidelines to the Christian life. Warren's five main points of loving God, loving others, evangelization, fellowship, and discipleship are umbrellaed under the notion that we were all created to serve God, and therefore, all have a purpose. Despite the power and simplicity of the book, it does have some flaws. Warren makes numerous assertions without backing them up entirely and as a result, it sounds like something one would hear in a Sunday School class. Most Christians know that everyone has a purpose in life, but what is the purpose of the homeless man on the street? What is the purpose of the child born with a genetic disorder that will die within a month? There is a duality to the simplicity of this book in that it makes it easier to understand while sacrificing deeper insight. As a whole, I thought this book was extremely beneficial to me. I am a firm believer of the statement that 'everything happens for a reason,' including me reading this book. I am currently graduating high school and was assigned this book as a Religion class book project, but I as I read the book, I saw it not as an assignment, but as a guide on how to interpret my future and how to plan it. As a result this book was a great read for me in this critical time of transition from high school to college. I would recommend this book to anybody with the precaution that it is not inherently perfect, there are flaws to Warren's charismatic style. Overall: 4 Stars
Doreenhm More than 1 year ago
Geared for the Christian who wants to live a life for God as well as the person who is seeking direction and guidance in life. Well-written, inspiring, God-glorifying book that is Christ-centered. No wonder it has been a best-seller. Stellar.
Prinston7 More than 1 year ago
Well done...not rare, nor medium rare, but a little over cooked. A good read would be M Scott Peck's books like, "The Roads Less Traveled and Beyond" or even more, "The Missing Message" by G Michael Price It should be about the endeavor to "Think". And understanding the way to stay part of our Maker's ongoing creation. It seems purpose would follow such that order...lets get to the point, because time is short. I give The Purpose Driven Life 3 stars.
ministerdoc More than 1 year ago
The Purpose Driven Life Expanded Edition by Rick Warren I had read the original version of this book and loved it,as well as The Purpose Driven Church,but I must say I really enjoyed the new expanded version better.Perhaps one of the most popular if not the most popular christian books ever published the writer breaks it down for you and shows you that there is a reason you are here,a reason you were created and how to seek out and find what you are here for.This new version has some cool things like bar-codes that can be scanned by smart phones and it will play videos from Pastor Warren about the chapter you just read plus links to go to on the internet to learn even more .I would recommend this fine piece of writing to anyone who needs to find a purpose .
Guest More than 1 year ago
Have we wandered so far from the truth that we are blinded by watered-down and incorrect teaching? We must not be longing 'for the pure milk of the Word' (I Peter 2:2) or else we would be more concerned with the teaching of God's Word (the Bible) than the works of a money-driven pastor. The principles taught in this book are overly simplistic. Warren does not use scholarly or even well-known and respected translations of the Bible. He often takes verses out of context to prove his point. Warren opens the book by stating, 'It's not about you,' however he uses the word 'you' and 'your' over 12 times in the first paragraph and the word 'God' once. This is a common element throughout the book. For a book that is supposedly Christ-centered, it sure comes aross as all about ME. If you are looking for your purpose on earth, start with the Bible. People have been reading it for thousands of years, and I'm sure they were able to figure out their purpose by reading God's Word, rather than reading Warren's newest best-seller. Just a warning: if you are looking for sugar-coated truths or are afraid of acknowledging you are a sinner, then stick with PDL. It will make you feel good, without convicting you. But if you ask me, we all could use a little more conviction in our lives.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Very easy 40 day read. Teaches you what you are here for in this life and the beauty of everlasting life when you pass. Stressed??? Read this!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love the book! It's refreshing and serves as a great reminder of how life should be and it took me to a glimpse of the past. I actually placed it next to all the books I treasured. Definitely a book to share to all!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I starting reading this book prior to becoming baptised and while aspiring to become a member of THE Family. The leasons are profound and have influenced me beyond measure. My wife immediately noticed a marked increase in my spiritual maturity within days of aborbing it's messages. I was constantly validating Pastor Warren's words to the Bible to ensure his words were in fact God's - they matched up and knew that God was speaking to me thru him...I followed. Pastor Warren is humble and has God's grace upon him, you can feel it when you read his words. When I am faced with troubles, I constantly refer to my notes of this book to help me prevail. If you truly love someone and they are struggling in life, give them this book and ask them to read it - it will help them discover the REAL meaning of life.
Barb1bs More than 1 year ago
This book has changed the way I think about everyday life. It gives you a clear understanding of what God expects out of you. It was inspirational and eye opening for me and it has taught me what is most important in life. The question of why we are here is to please God and help others. But what you specifically can do with your uniqueness is up to you to figure out. It has some soul searching questions throughout the book and at the end of every chapter. It gives you a lot to think about and I also feel that this could be a comforting book for people with life threating illnesses. It may not be for everyone but I still feel that everyone should read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I actually have this book in hard back but i love my nook so much that my all time favorite books i am re buying. I would definitely recommend this to anyone. He is an awesome author, jump in and enjoy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I learned that each person is special in God's eyes and unless we include God's ways in our lives, our lives become self focused.
KCPryzr More than 1 year ago
I received this book at the end of last year in time for the 10-year anniversary of the original printing of The Purpose Driven Life. I was really excited as I had never read this book, and my church had just completed a church-wide small group Bible Study by Rick Warren.   The content is virtually the same, but it offers some new twists for today's technologically savvy generations.  Each chapter has a QR code that will take the reader to a video introduction and an audio Bible Study to be done at the end of the chapter.  There are also two new chapters addressing the most common barriers to a purpose driven life.  The reader can also connect to other readers through access to an online community, where you can discuss your journey and receive feedback and support.     I confess, I did not try the QR codes for all 42 chapters, but for the chapters I did try, everything seemed to work just fine and the recordings were clear and easy to understand.  I will also say that reading a book for review purposes and reading it for an actual  personal study experience are two separate things.  When you're reading for review purposes, it is easy to read straight through areas that would normally speak to you and not let the words sink in and register within your spirit.  I have put this on my list for my devotion rotation so I can go back through it looking for the truth God wants to share.I would encourage those looking for a direction in their lives to read this book with an open mind.  It's written in such a way that anyone will get direction from it whether they are in high school, college, middle age, or retired.   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.”
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Say Amen if you love the LORD your father ! :) Told u 2 read me! ;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A good guideline for daily life. I do not agree with all of whats said but all in all worth the time. Also the basics of it is useful guidance. Definitely recommended.
DeltaCajunQueen More than 1 year ago
I purchased this book at the recommendation of my daughter and to my surprise, it has completely changed my life, for the better! I would recommend this book to anyone whom truly wishes to get closer to Christ and to find the REAL purpose as to why you are here on Earth!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Pastor Rick Warren describes steps to the life of purpose. Pastor Warren explains that we all can do service. We don't have to be a missionary in Africa to do service. We can do service in our homes, the internet, at work and at church. He gives examples from the bible and applies them to real life situations.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Purpose Driven Life is 'Christianity-Lite.' Tastes great, goes down easy, but has zero nourishment for the human soul. There are so many other good books on the spiritual life, that it amazes me that this is the one that has made it to the top of the bestseller lists. I was very disappointed. I am presently rereading John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, which was for centuries the number one best-seller after the Bible. It remains one of the greatest spirtual classics ever written. Warren's book cannot be compared to such classics and will not stand the test of time. If you want to read some recent books that examine the weaknesses of Warren's 'seeker-senstive' style of Christianity, try: 'The Market-Driven Church: The Worldly Influence of Modern Culture on the Church in America,' by Udo W. Middelmann, 'Dining with the Devil: The Megachurch Movement Flirts with Modernity,' by Os Guinness, and John MacArthur's 'Ashamed of the Gospel.' 'A Time of Departing' by Ray Youngen has a chapter on Rick Warren.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Recent events demonstrated the practicality and power of the words and concepts offered in this book. A lady humanized her captor by what she learned from this book. Her actions saved lives and ended a tradegy in Alanta, Georgia, USA. Author Rick Warren gives a dynamic clear and concise road map for a 40 day spiritual journey. Step by step one learns how all the pieces of their life fit together, and how to proactivly pursue fulfilling their discovered purpose. In essence, - 'Live your destiny, now!'- Sacred phrases from scriptures as well as innovative quotes from some world reknown 'thinkers and doers' like Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein and Thomas Caryle augment this well written guide to self-empowerment.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Whether you are simply considering Christianity, or have been a Christian for many years, Rick's book will meet you right where you are.

Life is filled with stress, and demands on our time and energy. It is an absolute must for us to find GOD's purpose, and spend our few days on this planet living it! Great book; deserves reading more than once.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago