Christianbook.com Ratings and Reviews

Customer Reviews for Multnomah Books Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men

Multnomah Books Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men

Drawing examples from his own life and the Bible's "average Joes"---including Joseph, Peter, Stephen, and Jesus, a carpenter's son---Meeder reveals the admirable qualities of "ordinary" men who live largely in the shadows yet demonstrate faithful integrity in work, marriage, family, church, and community. Includes a small-group discussion guide. 192 pages, softcover from Multnomah.
Average Customer Rating:
4 out of 5
4
 out of 
5
(12 Reviews) 12
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (12 reviews)
5 stars
5
4 stars
4
3 stars
1
2 stars
2
1 star
0
10 out of 1283%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Review 1 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great wisdom mixed with great adventures.

Date:June 15, 2012
Customer Avatar
raroeder
Location:Kansas
Age:55-65
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
While reading “Average Joe,” I was amazed at Troy Meeder’s insight into life. Truly the real heroes are the Average Joes, and any man with determination and integrity, regardless of age, can be a hero rising to the rank of Average Joe.
This is a book every man should read, even if you think you are above average or like me, less than average. We have a great God and what matters is what He sees in us. He is our fulfillment.
This book would make a great gift for husbands and high school grads.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 2 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Simply Great

Date:February 18, 2012
Customer Avatar
John
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
We are all average Joes .We just need to see it & what we can do through GOD....
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 3 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Who Wants to Be Average?

Date:November 4, 2011
Customer Avatar
owensdad
Location:Ohio
Age:25-34
Gender:male
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Troy Meeder is a cowboy in the Pacific Northwest, where he runs a ranch for at-risk teenagers, a wonderful ministry. I’m not sure why he doesn’t share any stories from his many years working the ranch and, in particular, working the hearts of rough kids. Instead, he focuses on those men he calls “average Joes,” men who have in some way influenced his maturity.
"Average Joe" is an attempt — at least from what I can gather — to encourage regular guys to make the most of life in their station, a far cry from something like John Eldredge’s "Wild at Heart," which I recommend to any man. Meeder’s content is inconsistent. At one time he seems to persuade guys to stay average and at another to fuel that “passion and desire to do something that will set us apart to face and survive an impossible circumstance.”
Perhaps I just don’t fit into the readership Meeder was addressing, for he tells a lot of stories about fishing and ranching. His affinity toward John Wayne certainly tells his age and also confuses his intended audience. Is he writing to younger men in the throes of building a career, a family, a marriage — not necessarily in that order — or to middle aged men discouraged concerning their averageness?
Meeder has a glorified image of military men, “This old cowboy tips his hat to honor them, the very best of us all — the soldiers, airmen, and sailors of the United States Armed Forces.” Indeed, they may be brave, but I’m not sure I’d call them the very best of us all. What makes a man the best? That he dons fatigues and carries an automatic weapon?
Further, Meeder virtually deifies cowboys, at times conveying, though likely unintentionally, that a man’s occupation defines the man. And he will not suffer anything less than his version of masculinity. For instance, in his chapter on friendship, he assures us that his idea of sitting down to chat with another guy doesn’t involve “the cost of a designer coffee at some metrosexual hangout.” Personally, I’ve had some amazing conversations with guys at such metrosexual hangouts.
If you’re a rough, Folgers-only kind of guy, and over 50, you might appreciate Troy Meeder’s take on being a man. My metrosexual friends and I would have a harder time gleaning the good beyond the macho. There is some there, but nothing that hasn’t been written better or less objectionable to guys who like “designer coffee.”
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review 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 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
+1point
1of 1voted this as helpful.
Review 4 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

"Average Joe" is the same old story told well

Date:September 3, 2011
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
How many versions of your favorite movie would you watch?
Three? Five? Maybe even seven?
How about 71?
Since Chapman & Hall first published "A Christmas Carol" in 1843 by English writer Charles Dickens, this story about Ebenezer Scrooge has been told in some kind of movie or television format at least 71 times. It's an old story that people seem to never tire of, although some versions are better than others.
Troy Meeder's new book, "Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men" (published by WaterBrook Multnomah) reminds me of the constant telling of a popular story, but this time it's the usual stuff men's ministries are made up of, just a different version told fairly well.
Therein lies the value of "Average Joe."
If you've been in --- or even near --- a men's ministry, you won't find the overall content of Meeder's book to be anything new. From the focus of God doing extraordinary things through ordinary men, to a chapter making the classic pitch for men to be involved in a mentoring relationship, the message comprising "Average Joe" isn't anything original or different. But the stories Meeder tells in crafting his message are new and often captivating.
From the first five chapters of the book, I thought Meeder may have been unfolding a larger, overarching message for his readers. Then chapter six happened. That chapter was an odd break from the preceding chapters inserted simply to "tip his hat" to the men who serve in a branch of our country's military. Chapter seven was also a little odd as Meeder turned to the image of a cowboy to draw out his example for the "average Joe."
But Meeder's skills at story-telling, coupled with his fluid writing, brings out a strong message about friendship in chapter 10, an intensely personal story in chapter 11, and chapter 12 tells a story powerful enough to make a grown man cry.
"Average Joe" has common messages for men, being told once again here by Meeder. But the messages are well crafted, and the stories they are composed of are worth the read.
I received this book free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group as part of their 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.”
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 5 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:July 18, 2011
Customer Avatar
Dr JSK
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling To Ordinary Men, written by Troy Meeder, is a book designed to bring the power and direction of the gospel back into the lives of those who have come to believe that they were meant to be nothing more than, "Average Joes."
Meeder cleverly intertwines the familiar stories of biblical characters with stories of common everyday men, men that could be our neighbors, co-workers or friends. He demonstrates that those who live the "Average Joe" life can be shaped into men that can make a great difference within this world.
This book has the power to open the eyes of the nameless, determined, faithful hardworking, average Christian men and show them, as well as the world, what their true potential is through and because of Christ. It has the power to show them that being average is not mundane or boring, but powerful if seen in the proper perspective. It has the power to show all men who feel they are trapped in a 9 to 5 life that they just might be where God can use them the most.
All in all, this book is a recommended read for all men seeking to find their true purpose within this world.
Dr. Jeff Krupinski
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 6 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:June 14, 2011
Customer Avatar
LM Helms
Location:NC
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I purchased this book for a gift, but I must say that I could not put it down without completing it myself. I was so very grateful for Troy's powerful testimony, honesty, and amazing humility in the ways that Jesus Christ has worked in his life and heart as a man and as a husband, mentor, friend and leader.
A must read!
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 7 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Average Joe - A great book to encourage

Date:June 10, 2011
Customer Avatar
Paul Emery
Location:Magnolia, TX
Age:25-34
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
“Average Joe” by Troy Meeder
“What is happening to my life? Have you ever honestly asked yourself that question? As young boys, we dreamed of being pilots, firefighters, doctors, and cowboys. Now we’re older, with a wonderful wife and kids, as well as a mortgage, a minivan…” This is the back cover of Mr. Meeder’s new book, “Average Joe God’s Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men.”
As an “Average Joe” myself I started reading this short book without much expectation, however I was quickly surprised with the very practical and timely book on how God views ordinary men. This is a short book with only 148 pages of very easily read material. This book also includes an eight session study guide that helps one begin to dig deeper into the topics addressed.
In “Average Joe” Troy Meeder carefully weaves personal stories of himself, family, or friends, in the different chapters, and then weaves in the history of Biblical characters as well. Each chapter is then topped off with some practical questions, or insights into the different topics he discusses.
One of the strengths of this book was the fact that Troy didn’t hold back the punches, and was very personal in the book sharing his own struggles and victories through Christ. For someone who has never heard of Troy Meeder before, this book was an introduction to a man who I would love to get to know, and the kind of guy most of us would love to have as a friend.
Another strength of this book was that Christ was the primary focus of almost every chapter. The only chapter that I didn’t feel this was the case on was Chapter 6, however, all in all Troy focused indeed on Christ, and had a great statement where he said, “I beg you please don’t waste your time reading this or any other book if it is replacing time in the Book.” I think when an author is willing to put the focus where it belongs the book rises in worth and value.
I gladly rank this book a 5. I think any man who reads this book would greatly benefit from the wisdom imparted through the stories, and the applications that Troy shares. This would be a great book for Men ministries, or even for a couple of guys to go through together.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers as part of their Blogger Review 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 Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 8 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Content did not match expectations or description

Date:June 3, 2011
Customer Avatar
AlandWynda
Location:Minot, ND
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Value: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
When I read the following description provided for the book, I was excited. "The revealing truth is that God chooses 'ordinary,' faithful men to do His most important work - regular guys like Peter the fisherman, David the shepherd, Stephen the waiter, Gideon the farmer, Paul the tentmaker, and even Jesus the carpenter. In this engaging book, Troy Meeder blends stories about biblical characters and contemporary men . . ."
As someone who is helping to lead and develop a men's ministry at my local church, this sounded like a resource that would be helpful and encouraging to me, and other men. However, as I read the book I became disappointed. I found that the blend of stories between contemporary men and biblical characters was weighted heavily on toward the contemporary men rather than the men of the Bible. As such, I felt let down and disappointed.
While Troy Meeder has some applicable points he learned from both the Bible and the experiences he had in his life, the book did not provide enough Scriptural insight that can be used to apply to all men (who will not have had the same experiences that the author has). Other books like The Man God Uses by Henry Blackaby cover this topic better.
I received a copy of this book through the Blogging for Books Program of Waterbrook/Multnomah publishers. I was not required to provide a positive review of this book.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 9 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

An extraordinary calling for ordinary guys

Date:May 31, 2011
Customer Avatar
Pastor Jeff
Location:Dunellen, NJ
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I’ve just finished reading Average Joe: God’s Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men, by Troy Meeder. If you’re a man trying to figure out how your average life can have meaning, and how to find fulfillment without becoming a spiritual (or corporate) superstar, this wonderful little book will show you just how important “average” is to God’s plan. Meeder, who left a promising career in Human Resources to become the full-time Youth Pastor at a dynamic church, found his dreams of grandeur dashed when he was fired, and forced to take on a job as a landscaper to pay his family’s bills. When he was almost killed in a hole filled with sewage, God touched his heart and helped him to realign his priorities and see that “average” people in “average” jobs can still play a significant role in the Kingdom of God.
Each chapter in the book tells the life-story of an average person whom God used in extraordinary ways, weaving their story with stories from the Bible. Long on story, and light on scripture, this book would be a great, non-threatening way to introduce a group of average men to the gospel. There is a study guide included that can be used by individuals or groups.
The stories are inspiring, and the only criticism I would make is that Meeder sometimes fails to make a strong enough connection between the true-life stories and application for the reader. For instance, at the end of a chapter about a gardener who became one of Meeder’s mentors, he says, “A man can search the world over and never once meet a person like Jim.” But then, on the same page he observes, “There are Jims all around us. They work in the shadows of our everyday lives. Find them.” I was left wondering how I should do that.
Still, overall I found the book inspiring and worthwhile, and I’ve gained a new appreciation of how the aspirations of the world – even the aspiration to spiritual greatness – are a poor substitute for embracing God’s calling wherever I am, and however God will use me.
The publisher, Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group, provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. See a preview of this book HERE.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 10 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Average Joe - truly average

Date:May 21, 2011
Customer Avatar
danielcooley
Location:Rio Rancho, NM
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Average Joe – really average
I picked up this book while looking for a new study for our church men’s group. The reviews seemed to say that it was a real page-turner, but needed more Biblical content. That would work well for us, as supplementing Biblical material is easier than making an average book interesting to a group of guys. But the reviews were wrong.
What we look for in our guys group is a book that is clear, blunt, fun to read, Biblically in-your-face, and exciting. To me, this book seemed average.
The study guide in the back of the book is great. Certain chapters come to life. There is great content in here, but it’s lost in its averageness (not a word but you get my meaning). It was a bit like having to eat a box of brand X cereal to get to the prize. I found myself skimming ahead hoping the next prize would drop out without having to read everything in-between.
It’s worth a read, and a study. Just don’t expect a Ferrari. Think Prius.
I received this book free from Multnomah Books for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. DanielCooley.com
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 11 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:April 27, 2011
Customer Avatar
Ligon
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I ordered this book for my husband as one of his many birthday presents. He started reading it as soon as he opened the box! When he would read something insightful he would make sure to find me in the house and read it to me. This book really makes a difference.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 12 for Average Joe: God's Extraordinary Calling to Ordinary Men
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Easy read, and very sound advice from Troy Meeder.

Date:April 26, 2011
Customer Avatar
Huntfishantiques
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Troy has taken some difficult situations that we men find ourselves in and given practical soulutions. This is an easy and enjoyable read.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.