Kyle Idleman, whose Not A Fan: Becoming a Completely Committed Follower of Jesus (Thomas Nelson, 2011) has sold over 200K print copies according to Nielsen BookScan, is now following up with a guide on how to live by Jesus’s paradoxical principles in The End of Me: Where Real Life in the Upside-down Ways of Jesus Begins (David C Cook, Oct.).
“An invitation to live for [Jesus] is an invitation to die to myself,” said the popular author and teaching pastor at Southeast Christian Church in Kentucky. “It may not make sense; it may not feel right, but the abundant life that Jesus offers is found at the end of me.”
With a first printing of 75K, The End of Me explores Jesus’s Sermon on the Mount and examines the seemingly contradictory messages in the Beatitudes. A national marketing and media campaign for the book is already in full swing. With more than 100K combined Twitter and Facebook followers, Idleman intends to walk readers through Jesus’s “upside-down message" by urging them to push through what may feel counter-intuitive and even unnatural.
“Intuitively, it just makes sense that I will be the happiest when I am at the front of the line, get the biggest piece of cake at the party, and receive applause as I stand in the spotlight,” he said. “But Jesus came with a message that the last will be first, the broken will be blessed, and the humble will be exalted.”
Idleman said that each chapter in the new book represents “some work God has been doing in me, although I have often resisted every step of the way.” He offered the chapter, “Weak to be Strong,” as an example of this. The chapter focuses on how God’s power is made most apparent when we are at our weakest. “When I refuse to be vulnerable because of pride or fear and instead try to mask my weakness, I miss out on an opportunity to experience his strength,” said the author.
While The End of Me includes practical next steps that the reader can take to better understand the contradictory principles of the Beatitudes, Idleman believes “the journey to the end of me means coming to a place where I acknowledge I am not the answer to my question or the solution to my problem.” In coming to “the end of me,” he said that we can go to Jesus as broken people and receive a blessing for doing so; we can go to Jesus in tears and find comfort; and we can go to Jesus empty and “have more room to be filled by him.”
The strong marketing campaign for The End of Me includes promotions at major retail outlets such as Lifeway Christian Bookstores and Barnes & Noble. Additional heavy promotions are being implemented at Christian Book Distributors, Mardel, Parable, Family Christian Stores, and other independent CBA retailers. Idleman will also be engaging with churches as well as with social media followers to share his new message.