Insights & Reflection
Reviewer: The Rebecca Review.com
“May the urgent things in
life never get in the way of the important things.” ~Trey
When four friends graduate from Westmont College in Santa
Barbara and decided to change their focus, they find themselves
considering the possibilities of a worldwide odyssey in search
of a meaningful existence. Through their experiences they see
the world in an entirely new way. Not only do they find
themselves developing a heightened spiritual awareness, they
find out what makes life truly important. They want their lives
to have some eternal significance.
If you haven’t traveled the world, you might not realize
the absolute luxury of your life in America. If you have
traveled the world, you may already realize that physical
poverty does not equal poverty of the soul and physical health
and wealth does not equal richness of spirit.
If you are looking for the larger picture, the meaning in
life or think of life as a journey, you will enjoy this book.
“Four Souls” chronicles a spiritual and literal journey
around the globe. Mike, Matt, Jedd and Trey live and work with
locals around the world. In each country they touch lives and
encourage people who have varied religious beliefs. Their focus
is not on one religion, but rather they bring a new sense of
adventure to living a life with meaning and purpose and
according to the principles of Christ.
They travel to:
Through their travels, conversations, journaling, and
real-life cultural experiences they have the dawning realization
that the Epic life is the type of life that makes each day worth
waking up for. This journey is just part of the process of
turning them into the type of men they want to be.
“Snowflakes flurried in the darkness.
Whereas the jungles and hills of Guatemala had teemed with
movement and noise, chatter and kaleidoscopic color, these
ancient forests smothered all sounds beneath their snows. But
this realm did not feel less alive. It felt more so, like diving
into a lake on a frost-covered morning. There was none of the
mental dizziness caused by tropical haze and drowsy warmth. We
felt as awake and sharp as the edge of a razor.” pg. 106
The writing is often vivid and describes moments with
fascinating creativity which shows great powers of observation.
Throughout the book, journal sections explore the philosophical
ideas each considers while traveling to unique places in the
mind as well as the world. They compare the values and culture
in America with how unique values are expressed overseas.
Their journey is complicated by overwhelming challenges.
First, they must drive through hurricane damaged roads in order
to get to Guatemala. They then narrowly escape the eruption of
Mount Etna which wreaked havoc on the Sicilian countryside.
To add to the stress of the situation, they leave on their
mission with less than the amount needed to complete the trip.
They are ten thousand dollars short of their expected budget and
then they have many unexpected expenses to deal with along the
way. They must deal with corrupt governments, a riot in South
Africa, crime and even guerrilla warfare.
They soon realize that America is thought of as a mythical
land across the sea and that we have so much while the rest of
the world struggles in impoverished conditions. Yet, as they
travel, they find that hospitality is given in its purest form,
that people live in the moment and the search for wealth is not
as important as an emphasis on the beauty of human
There is also a moment of innocent romance where one of the
friends gets a crush on a Russian girl. I loved the descriptions
of the cuisine in each country and how the authors brought a
sense of culture to each chapter.
“I would have thought that living
without the conveniences of electricity, running water, or a car
would give one less time for relationships. Surprisingly, I have
found the opposite to be true. Wealth and material things so
often detract from time for relationships. The complexities that
come with more possessions-even while making life more
convenient-often bind people to having bad relationships rather
than free them to have good ones.” –Matt
“What I saw today was just a minor
incident, but I think it says a lot about the turmoil that South
Africa is going through at this time.” –Mike
“If Jesus is who He claimed to be,
through, He is the Master of life! From what I’ve seen in
those who really seek to follow Him, living as He taught leads
to the epic life I want so badly-not necessarily life without
trials, but one full of purpose even in the ordinary moments of
everyday life.” –Jedd
“Through this trip, we’ve
experienced what an incredible gift it is to be taken in and
taken care of. There’s just nothing that conveys love and
acceptance like an open home and hearth.” -Trey
If you enjoy looking at life from unique perspectives, you
will enjoy the “reflection sections” which are excerpts from
each friend’s journal. These sections give each author a
moment in the chapters to express their thoughts at a unique
moment in time. There are also pictures throughout the book,
bringing a creative “travel journal” element to the work.
“Four Souls: A Search For Epic Life” will awaken in you
the desire to reach new heights of awareness within yourself and
show you there is still good in the world. You may also feel
compelled to take this new awareness and channel it into
practical ideas that could touch the lives of those you reach
Reading this book made me feel closer to God and made
me realize how much God wants to show his love to others,
through us. This book will change you and in a few hours you
will feel you have gained a new insight into the purpose of
You might also enjoy:
The beauty of expanding your comfort zone is that there is a
certain rush when you do it.
There is this surge of energy, this rush you feel when you do something
You feel really alive. ~Kent Sayre, Unstoppable Confidence