5 Questions with Terry Smith, Author of Ten

Describe what it means to be a “ten”?
I describe a ten by what Jesus said in John Chapter 10 verse 10 where he talked about offering life in all its fullness, more and better life than you ever dreamed. A ten life means living the life that God dreamed for you.

How does one reach the “ten” life you speak of? In the book I lay out what we call the Ten Pathway where I lead people through a      process to discover what a ten life is for them where they try to figure out what God had in mind when he made you and what is your role in this world and how do you actualize it. So, it starts by waking up to the idea that God created you to partner with him and what he is doing in the world. And he made you to work for what he works for and care about what he cares about.

What would you say to critics who look at this as a self-help book? I say very specifically in the book that this is not a self help book. It is impossible to live the life God dreamed for you if your life is primarily about yourself. To live the life God dreamed for us we have to be in                 relationship with him, we have to partner with him and be totally committed to helping others. Some have said it should actually be called an “others help book.” I do not think it is possible from a purely psychological basis for people to fully develop themselves if they are not engaged in what’s happening in the world around them and in the lives of other people. That is why I talk about leadership in the book so much. Leadership is an unselfish activity if it is understood correctly. Leadership is about accepting the moral obligation to inspire others to the life that God dreamed for them.

Tell me about how the book is reaching out to unbelievers? The book is written in the same voice that I teach in. We have had a lot of success in our church in reaching people who are far from God and particularly people who want to think and not just base their life or conversion experience based on emotion. So I have written in that same voice. It is very deliberately written to make the case for this kind of life to a person who may not be a Christ follower but who is open to at least listening to a person talk about how to live a better life. Then ultimately I am saying to them you can’t live this kind of life without Jesus but I don’t start with that, I lead them to it.

Tell me about he idea of getting churches involved in the book?
The idea of having a number of churches do this at one time is pretty powerful to me because this kind of thinking we have already seen can raise the faith level at different churches in a way that makes a difference in peoples’ lives. People are starting businesses and non-profits and going out and witnessing and you get that going and then take the projects where you are going out and serving in the Name of Jesus and it raises the level of  a community.

So everyone can live a ten life? Everybody was designed to be a ten. What a ten is for one person may be different than what it is for another, but it is about living God’s dream for you.