Book Review: How Joyful People Think

I love expository preaching. The deeper you go into the text, the better it gets. To take one verse and expand it into eight to twelve chapters worth of content is great!

Pastor Jamie Rasmussen has done just that with How Joyful People Think. Using Philippians 4:8 as his treasure chest, he pulls out so much by way of spiritual nuggets and practical adornment. More than just the power of positive thinking, joyful thinking takes on a very realistic approach. It is truthful and honest, vulnerable about weaknesses and shortcomings, but always hopeful.

Beginning with the first phrase, Rasmussen discusses what the word “whatever” really means. Rather than a sarcastic reply or an empty gesture, “whatever” is actually “a word used to refer to limitless volume and extent.” The capacity for us to think joyfully is beyond measure! And the returns we get for doing so are innumerable.


Continuing through each of the eight ways to think, Rasmussen gives us deeper thoughts rather than surface understanding. “Whatever is true” means that we combine our personal reality with transcendent truth. “Whatever I honorable” means we keep our head cool under pressure from others. “Whatever is commendable” digs into the power of confession and integrity.

This book was not only a joy to read, it’s practical applications will live with me for a while. I recommend this to anyone, especially pastors looking for a way to preach this particular passage to their congregation.

Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for a fair review.