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Enemies of the Heart: Breaking Free from the Four Emotions That Control You Paperback – Jun 21 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah Books; Reprint edition (June 21 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601421451
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601421456
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 1.5 x 20.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 136 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #27,036 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


Praise for Enemies of the Heart

“Andy Stanley touches the right nerve at the right time. We all have an understandable tendency to focus on the problems others need to address in their lives. But Andy encourages us to put ourselves on the hook and not let go until we’ve made any necessary changes. This book shined a spotlight on some of those areas I need to work on, and
I know it will do the same for you.”
—Shaunti Feldhahn, best-selling author of For Women Only

“Andy Stanley is a master teacher for a generation that loves to be taught. Here is yet more proof of Andy’s ability to take us deep in a way that makes us want to go there. This is a great book.”
—Dave Ramsey, New York Times best-selling author and nationally syndicated radio host

“Read this book with caution! You will probably uncover some mean and ugly stuff in the depths of your own heart. I sure did. The good news is that Andy Stanley doesn’t leave you there to struggle; instead, he offers wise, biblical remedies that every Christian should make part of their own spiritual habits. This is great stuff that I enjoyed teaching
at our church.”
—Doug Fields, former associate pastor, Saddleback Church

About the Author

Andy Stanley is a pastor, communicator, author, and the founder of North Point Ministries, Inc. (NPM). Since its inception in 1995, North Point Ministries has grown from one campus to five in the Atlanta area and has helped plant more than thirty strategic partner churches globally. Each Sunday, more than twenty-five thousand people attend worship services at one of North Point Ministries’ five campuses. Andy’s books include Communicating for a Change,  The Next Generation Leader, Visioneering, and How Good is Good Enough? Andy lives in Alpharetta, Georgia, with his wife, Sandra, and their children.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Aileen Adams on Sept. 13 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed the book and it gave me a new perspective on the issues of anger, guilt, greed and jealousy. of course I like the Christian perspective of it too. It has helped me to look at myself in a slightly different way so I have gained more understanding about why I react the way I do in certain situations.
Thank you for writing the book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Christian or not, this is a must read! It will definitely help you understand why you do the things you do and where it all comes from.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Reine and Joan Diener on Jan. 28 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Give me an Andy Stanley book - and I'll read it. !! Andy always hits the nail on the head when he writes on a subject - his books are those kind of books you just have to read more than once. A. J. Diener
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By VK on April 25 2015
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This book will change help you see you heart and begin to repair any damage
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 438 reviews
56 of 57 people found the following review helpful
Vintage Stanley - Biblical, Practical, Life Transforming! June 21 2011
By Dr. David P. Craig - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I think Andy Stanley has hit it out of the park with this book. He is so good at bringing God's truth from the Scriptures to bear on the big issues of the day. I think that along with Pete Scazzero's books Emotionally Healthy Spirituality and the Emotionally Healthy Church - that this book is must reading for pastors, leaders, and anyone who is a part of the body of Christ. Most Bible teachers, often neglect the soulish matters of the heart, - but Stanley calls a spade a spade and writes a convicting, challenging, and much needed corrective for us to address our blind spots.

In Part 1 he addresses the fact that sin comes from the heart as Jeremiah says and is incredibly deceptive. He talks about the damage that sin does, and how to identify it, and the importance of correcting it.

In Part 2 he addresses the dynamics of the debts that result from our sin. The four biggies are: Guilt - "I owe you"; Anger - "You owe me"; Greed - "I owe me"; and Jealousy - "God owes me." Andy handles each of these brilliantly and gives excellent examples that we can all relate to, so that we can confess them and start working in a positive direction to overcome them with the help of God the Holy Spirit.

In Part 3 he focuses in on how to confront each of these sins, with their righteous (happy) counterparts: from anger to forgiveness; from greed to generosity; and reasons to celebrate the joy that we have in receiving Christ's blessing and the Holy Spirit's power at work in our lives.

In Part 4 he helps us focus on what we are modeling and the legacy we are leaving behind (especially parents for their children) and how to deal with lust.

The book includes a helpful discussion guide, which is excellent for personal application, and small group discussion. This book is vintage Stanley: full of Scripture, great examples and illustrations, and motivates you toward wanting to live the abundant life that Jesus came to give us. I can't recommend it highly enough - life transforming!
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Enemies that attack us ALL June 23 2011
By Aaron K. Potratz - Published on
Format: Paperback
I was fortunate to receive this book prior to its release in exchange for reviewing it for WaterBrook Multnomah. It just released on Tuesday, and let me simply introduce it by saying that it's a book I recommend with confidence.

Who's It For:
This book is definitely for Christians, as Stanley frequently quotes Scripture passages and explains what they mean to the Christian's heart. That said, the book's reach may be broad enough because it is clinical but comes across as "self-help from a biblical perspective."

What It's About:
Enemies of the Heart is about four destructive emotions that control us and what to do about them. The emotions are guilt, anger, greed, and jealousy. If you're like me, I initially thought that only one or two of those applied. However, after reading this book I realized how incorrect my impressions were and how they could still apply to me - or anyone, for that matter - even if they weren't primary.

Stanley puts these emotions in a debt-to-debtor context, which really helped me understand and remember them more clearly. Guilt says "I owe you;" anger says "you owe me;" greed says "I owe me;" and jealousy says "God owes me." The premise is that whatever your situation, there is something that was (actually or perceived) taken and thus something owed (or believed to be owed). The solutions: confess, forgive, give, and celebrate, respectively.

Some Highlights:
I really enjoyed this book, both for personal and professional reasons. As a professional counselor, I found myself agreeing with Stanley's assessments of the four enemies of the heart as well as how they tend to evidence themselves in people's lives. I especially appreciated that he made a point to say that a person's heart is where problems lie and how certain actions (or habits) will work to change the heart, from the inside out. Effectively, this seeks to treat the underlying cause of problems rather than simply symptoms.

Enemies is written in plain, easy-to-read language that both professionals and lay persons should be able to follow it very easily. I appreciated this. However, even though it's a quick read it's not without substance. There were often places in the book where I had to put it down and reflect for myself because Stanley's representation of the heart vices were so convicting. His approach genuinely encouraged me to desire change in areas that were illuminated as needing change.

There's also a study guide in the back, which is pretty straight forward and geared towards small group discussions. I always appreciate that option with books, because it makes them more appealing if readers choose to use it in that setting.

Some Lowlights:
One criticism I have of Stanley is that he comes across as slightly self-righteous or sarcastic at times. Particularly when he's describing the destructive nature of one of the four enemies, it felt to me as though he toed the line between admonishing and insulting. Don't get me wrong, this was very slight and definitely not intentional - in fact, at times I could tell he was using humor to make a point, and it was often effective. That said, Stanley's heart was quick to come through and repair any accidental error - especially when he moved into how to confront the enemy of the heart.

A critique I have of the book is that it can be too general in places where some explanation or caution are needed. For example, when talking about forgiving in order to overcome anger, Stanley is completely silent about situations where abuse or unrepentance exist. Even if he had no intention of applying his concepts to these circumstances, I found myself wishing he'd at least made a statement to reflect as much. There are so many questions I wished he asked and answered, such as what to do once forgiveness has been given.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it. It's easy to read, applicable to probably anyone, biblically referenced, and a great tool to help Christians break free of these four enemies of the heart. Keep in mind that it's not intended as a complete resource nor should it replace professional therapy or pastoral guidance, though it would be an excellent supplement for these.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
It Came From Within July 20 2011
By John Mark Woelfel - Published on
Format: Paperback
About a month ago, I went through my bookshelves with the intention of re-reading a book called, It Came From Within by one of my favorite speakers, Andy Stanley. I found the book in the basement and transferred it to a bookshelf in our living room where I keep all the other books I'm "kind of" reading right now. Shortly after, I received an e-mail from Northpoint Church (where Andy Stanley speaks) inviting me to join a website called "Blogging for Books" where I could receive his newest book, Enemies of the Heart, for free simply for reading and blogging about it. That deal worked for me, so I signed up and within two weeks the book was delivered to my door.

Glancing at the bottom of the cover of my new book I noticed the words, "Previously released as It Came from Within." No lie. I was a bit disappointed as I was excited for a brand new book by Stanley, but I had been meaning to re-read this book anyway and this just gave me the motivation to do so.

The thing I love about listening and reading Andy Stanley is how he is able to take important, complex truths and communicate them in ways that leave you wondering why you never thought of that in the first place. The book is laid out like a sermon series (which it was), which makes it easy to break down into logical segments. The idea of the whole book really is structured around Proverbs 4:23 which says, "Above all else, guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life."

Stanley focuses on four main "enemies" of the heart that are the sources of most problems we have in our life. The idea is that each one of these enemies creates a debt/debtor relationship.

They are:

Guilt- You owe someone else.

Anger- Someone owes you.

Greed- You owe yourself.

Jealousy- God owes you.

Stanley builds his case for each enemy and then offers a specific action step on how to defeat them. For instance, the chapter that was most convicting to me was the one on greed. He says that a question we should ask ourselves is "Why do I have more time and resources than I actually need?"- a situation that the majority of Americans find themselves in if they were honest with themselves. He goes on to say:

If God has blessed you with more than you need, it's so that you can share your abundance with those who have need. Embracing that simple truth is the key to ridding your heart with greed. If you're not willing to give to the point that it impacts your lifestyle, then according to Jesus you're greedy. Greed is not a feeling; it's a refusal to act.

Those ideas are tough to think about. If I'm being honest, when my wife and I found out that we would have some "extra" money coming in, we immediately started dreaming about the next house we could move into after we have been in our current condo for the three years we are required to stay here. If we're not careful, it's easy to view the money as "ours" instead of God's money that we are being asked to manage.

This book is absolutely worth picking up. It's a quick and easy read, but the implications are incredibly valuable.

*I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Enemies Of The Heart by Andy Stanley - Book Review June 22 2011
By Micah Hasty - Published on
Format: Paperback
Enemies Of The Heart by Andy Stanley is a reissue of the book It Came From Within. Stanley has repackaged the book with the edition of some new illustrations and a small group study guide in the back. I have a feeling this was packaged to more of a small group audience.

I read It Came From Within a long time ago. Reading Enemies Of The Heart almost feels like I'm reading a completely different book. The illustrations have more to do with "the heart" (thank goodness for North Point simple models) and are geared more toward specific topics. Overall the book is better constructed and streamlined.

This is one of the best books I've ever read on authenticity.
That's what it calls us to. The premise is that what we say, do, think, feel - begins in our hearts. That our heart is deceitful above all else. This book challenges the reader to do a heart check and really make sure our lives line up with our hearts.

Great book. Read it for sure!
I received this book from Waterbrook Press for free in exchange for a book review.
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Where was the Holy Spirit? Aug. 25 2011
By Matt Kresge - Published on
Format: Paperback
In his recent book, Enemies of the Heart, Andy Stanley examines key problems that are at war in our heart as Christians. It would be safe to say this book is aimed to Christians in community. Stanley addresses four main enemies, guilt, anger, greed, and jealousy. These enemies truly do seek to damage and destroy us. After examining each enemy, Stanley presents the reader with alternatives. These alternatives are the solution to your enemies.

I was excited to pick up this book and read it. But from the beginning (Part 1) I was disappointed. The first four chapters address why the reader should examine the heart. Don't get me wrong I believe that heart examination is extremely important and vital. However, to make his point, Stanley seemed to drag on with story after story. He could have easily introduced this topic in two chapters.

In the second part of the book, Stanley defined and examined the four enemies. Using the word "owe", Stanley creatively showed how each enemy tells us that someone or something is owed. He was to the point and did a good job addressing his topic in this section. I enjoyed this section of the book.

In the third part of the book, Stanley offers the alternatives. This is the part that really disappointed me. I expected so much more than a one step process to eliminate my guilt, anger, greed, and jealousy. I would have loved to see Stanley present the gospel more.

Few of my disappointments with the book.

Where was the Holy Spirit? The Gospel? Few mentions of Jesus? Anytime you begin looking at the process of sanctification the Spirit is crucial. Romans 8:13 states "For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." When understanding sanctification, one cannot be changed unless the Holy Spirit is the main active agent. We are certainly called to be proactive in sanctification. However, we must have the Holy Spirit. I was shocked to see no mention of the Holy Spirit when dealing with the enemies of the heart. I was also disheartened by the lack of gospel message. The gospel changes us. Jesus changes us.

Creating a brand of moralism? Don't get me wrong. I have read and listened to Andy Stanley enough to believe that this was not his intention. I also enjoy Andy Stanley's simplicity at times. However, I think his simplistic approach is dangerous here. He presents a step-by-step method (although he didn't want to call it that) to overcome the enemies. If you are greedy just give more. You need to be generous. If you are jealous then celebrate. If you are guilty then confess. If you are angry then forgive. These things are great! By no means do I say not to do these things. But is it really this easy? So I accomplish the steps, now what? By doing these things is my heart really changed?

Overall I struggled with this book. I thought it had the potential but fell short. I thought Stanley did a good job of raising issues and helping you detect the enemies in your life. However, the solutions were lacking. I think it could be used in a small group setting to discuss the enemies of the heart. I expected more. The issue of leaving out the Holy Spirit left me with a lot of caution.

I received this book free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.