Forty Days of Purpose

Rick WarrenRick Warren from Saddleback Community Church in Los Angeles has produced this resource for congregations to spend 40 days (just over five weeks) focusing on worship, fellowship, discipleship, ministry and evangelism. Individuals, groups and congregations are equipped to ask the question, “What on earth am I here for?”

Seminar, Individual study (book), Small group discussion, gathered worship, ministry fair, Youth Groups, Sunday School, Adult Bible Studies.

Styles of Learning
Reading material (a chapter a day), Discussion, Sermons, Worship.

Number of sessions
Resources for seven Sundays and six small group sessions.

Length of sessions
Opening Seminar two hours
Fifteen to thirty minutes reading each day
90 – 120 minutes in small groups
Teaching sessions – designed for 20 – 40 minutes

The course is designed to
1. Resource individuals and families as they explore their sense of God-given purpose
2. Resource small groups as they explore together the five purposes given to the church (and individuals)
3. Resource congregations as they build God’s purposes into their rhythms.

Theological Perspective
Conservative Evangelical. Rick Warren comes from a Baptist background. At times his Calvinist approach becomes evident.

Age Group
Adult, Youth, Children

Specific leadership requirements
Churches are required to register with Purpose Driven Life and run their program at the same time as other churches around the world. Registration may be required four months in advance.

Country of origin

Available in languages other than English
Chinese, Spanish

Resources provided
40 Days of Purpose PackEach participant has a pack with the book, Purpose Driven Life, a small group curriculum workbook, and a memory verse key ring. Each small group has a set of small group curriculum on video or DVD. Set of ten is $120 Australian.
Seven Weekend service plans include suggested sermons by Rick Warren and access to Saddleback’s campaign services on the internet.
Youth and Children’s Ministry Curriculum is available on CD. The youth ministry resource includes messages by Youth Pastor Doug Fields along with study guides. Children’s curriculum, in-class actitivities and take-home materials for preschool through to end of primary school.

Where to purchase
The books can be purchased from any Christian bookstore. However the overall course is only available from Purpose Driven Australia at Church Resource Specialties.
Ministry Partners AustraliaTOLL FREE 1800 010 446Fax: (03) 5241 3290 Email: 40days at
Mail: PO Box 519, Belmont VIC 3216

Campaign Cost ranges from $360 (congregation less than 200 members), to $440 (200-500 members), and $570 (over 500 members).

Technology needed
Video/DVD player required if using the Rick Warren or Doug Fields talks.

Web sites (Australia) (USA) (NZ) (The book)

National/Regional Advisors
See the Australian list of churches and leaders available to provide advice in preparing the 40 Days of Purpose campaign. Email addresses are provided there.

Uniting Churches
In Queensland, these include Vic Caplick at Fassifern Valley Uniting and Bob Miles at Pine Mountain Uniting. In South Australia these include Don Purdey at Glenunga and Gordon Cooksey at Golden Grove Uniting. In NSW these include Neville Faggotter at Gymea-Miranda, Paul & Miriam Edgar at Kincumber, Mick Brown at Menai-Illawong, Graeme Odgers at Panania, and Deborah Crosley at Terrigal Uniting.

Uniting Church Congregations using 40 Days of Purpose

Blacktown, Coleambally, Dapto, Grenfell, Gymea-Miranda, Liverpool, Maclean, Oatley, Port Macquarie, St Andrews, Sutherland, Turramurra, Yamba.
Bald Hills, Bracken Ridge, Innisfail, Oakey & District. Sunnybank, The Gap, Wavell Heights, Wulguru
Nuriootpa, Seacombe, Tusmore, Woodville
Seymour, South Camberwell, St Luke’s, St Philips

Introduction – What on Earth am I here for?
Worship – You were planned for God’s pleasure
Fellowship – You were Planned for God’s Family
Discipleship – You were Created to Become Like Christ
Ministry – You were Shaped for Serving God
Evangelism – You were Made for a Mission

5 thoughts on “Forty Days of Purpose

  1. Paul Inglis

    Thanks for posting this Duncan. we are using the “40 days” in a modified way to suit our small congregation and country lifestyle and outlook!

    I purchased 7 copies of the small ($2) booklet “What on earth am I here for” and circulated these through the whole congregation until every adult had read it (that’s about 40 people). It was, as expected, a slow process, but after three months that stage was completed. Then bought a bulk supply at discount rates of the full text and have sold/given them to the congregation who are browsing/reading in advance of doing the 40 day program (modified)from beginning of February 2006.

    We were not in a position to invest in the full promotion and resources. Already I am receiving positive feedback and some enthusiasm about doing the program in February.

    In educational terms I have used an “anticipatory set” process to motivate an audience into becoming committed and involved in learning.

    Paul Inglis
    Community Minister
    Dayboro/Mt Mee Uniting Churches

  2. Ronnie Holt

    We are going through the 40 days of purpose now at Lakeview Baptist Church . My SS class wants to take the book and cover a chapter a week for 40 weeks. Do you have a study guide for this ?

  3. Samantha Forsyth

    Another great book I studied this Lent as part of my devotions was ‘Holy Adventure: 41 days of Audacious living’ by Bruce Epperly. I’d love to see that book on this web site of resources.

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