A personal note to those who’ve heard me speak: If you heard my Finding Balance in the Circus of Life presentation and found it valuable in some way, I could use your help. I’ve expanded that talk into a book and I’m looking for some comments to place in the front of the book under “Praise for Finding Balance in the Circus of Life.” If you are willing, send me a sentence or two about how it impacted you. You can email the statement to: email@example.com. I will use your first name and last initial, and possibly town and state, so please provide those things. Thanks for your help. I’m so excited to get this book into the hands of many who have asked for it!
Now on to the Lessons from the East book review!
I thought I would never get through this book.
But it’s not why you think.
It’s because I kept stopping to tweet the wisdom I found in it. And if the quote was too long for a tweet, then I posted it to my professional Facebook page.
I used to nab every free book I received an offer to review. But then I got overwhelmed. I ended up with hundreds of books, some I never got around to reviewing. (But in my defense, does anyone really need to read a review of a book about Jimmy Choo shoes?)
Now I take a very limited number of review books. When I received the offer for Lessons from the East: Finding the Future of Western Christianity in the Global Church, I hesitated. I’m not a pastor or denominational leader. To be honest, I only accepted it because my husband is both. I figured he might find it helpful. Now, I really don’t want to let it go. He may have to buy his own copy.
- Are you someone who wants to make a difference for the kingdom of God?
- Do you want to see your church impact the world around you?
- Are you curious about what God is doing in the world outside of North America?
Then grab Bob Roberts’ book. He offers challenges on living as disciples of Christ in our occupations and neighborhoods, not just our churches. You’ll see some of the gems in the tweets and posts I’ve included here.
Roberts is part of the Global Collaborative Community made up of two dozen church leaders, most from Asia, Africa and the Middle East. He shares the lessons he has learned from listening to those ministering in areas where Christianity is a minority religion at best, persecuted more often.
He’s put the strategies to work in his church, NorthWood in Dallas. Not all his congregants appreciated the changes; some left. But his church is seeing God do amazing things because they were willing to change.
Roberts talks of domains of society, like government, education, and economics, where we live our lives. The church, he says, is not a domain; it is present in every domain through its people or it is irrelevant.
He recommends that churches stop focusing on worship services and begin to equip individuals to “minister where they live and work instead of primarily on [their] church campus.”
Another suggestion is to engage with leaders in your community both in government and from other religions.
Learn to work together where you can, to promote the common good. Build relationships; get to know people. Respect them and never speak evil of them.
If you want your prayer life to become more vibrant and learn to rely more on the power of the Holy Spirit, read Lessons from the East: Finding the Future of Western Christianity in the Global Church. Maybe you’ll be able to get through it faster than I did, but I wouldn’t count on it!
2 thoughts on “Lessons from the East—Review of a Book for All of Us”
This sounds like a great book to read with instructions. I have been ask to lead a small group, and need a book. Our ages are Seniors. I was thinking what a good age this would be to teach this, but then on the other hand some people don’t like to change, and that is what I want to see change instead of staying where we are at. I want people to look further then where we are. I also want them to enjoy the book too. Any help would be appreciated. If you can. Class start’s in Sept. I need to get the book , and read it ,but will anyway it sounds like a book I would read. Thank you for all the comments.
Ellen, it would certainly give your people something to think about. While it is written toward pastors, there is so much each of us can apply, and I think if people read it and accepted what he has to say, they would be more encouraging toward changes the pastor and staff want to make.