Skip to main content

Must Everything Change?

I often enjoy reading books and listening to teachers that challenge my paradigm and presuppositions. So, currently, I'm reading Brian McClaren's latest controversial book, Everything Must Change. And his book is certainly not disappointing me in my desire to be challenged, although much of his discussion pertains to topics that often plague my conscience.

I haven't done a book review in a while...actually, I've probably never blogged a true book review, but I have a few spare minutes to start one, so here ya go.

McClaren opens with two questions that have bothered him for much of his Christian life, questions which were the impetus behind this latest book: What are the biggest problems in the world? What does Jesus have to say about these global problems?

He then reveals the inspiration for the book's controversial title. He and his daughter were at a conference in Berundi, along with fifty Christian leaders from Sub-Saharan Africa. There, they discussed what the Gospel meant for Africans, who had experienced years upon years of suffering. They had received a message that God cared about their eternal salvation after they died, but what about their present circumstances--the genocide, the hunger, the famine, the disease, the injustice and corruption? They wanted to know what the message of Jesus had to say about their present life in East Africa. McClaren, along with other leaders, talked about how Jesus' message was one that included the arrival of God's kingdom on earth, not just helping us get to heaven (see: Lord's prayer).
At the end of the conference, a young woman sat motionless. McClaren approached her and she said with wide eyes, "If Jesus' message of the kingdom of God is true, then everything must change."

Subsequently, McClaren asks, "if we were to apply the good news of the kingdom of God to global and societal problems, what could change?"

...

What could change?

...to be continued

Comments

KreativeMix said…
i think i'll get the book too.

Popular posts from this blog

What were my memorable books of 2016?

I don't read nearly as much these days. Or maybe not as much as I'd prefer in some idealistic (unreal) world where I get to spend a few hours a day soaking up good literature.

Mostly, I'm reading Goodnight, Gorilla, There's a Rumble in the Jungle or Fancy Nancy. (Let's be honest. I actually like children's literature.) And at bedtime, Anna has fallen in love with (routine?) my narration of homegrown stories. (In case you're wondering, I'm a terrible storyteller. I wish I were that dad whose stories inspire her to one day look back and marvel at the whimsical, imaginative stories I cooked up at bedtime, but alas, probably not. I'm learning slowly, though, at least about what kind of story she will likely enjoy.)

But in the margins of here and there, I have found time for a sampling of books in 2016. Here are some memorable ones:

More of Less, Joshua Becker

A helpful guide on minimizing excess (possessions) so you can focus on what's most important…

Today's Awakening - With malice toward none, with charity for all

“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.” President Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address “How are you doing today?” she asked with a smile. “Not great,” I replied in haste, opting for honesty over pleasantry. “I’m sad and angry,” I told the woman on my way to work.
Like many of you, I awoke today in disbelief. How could *this* man be our President elect? How could our country – the great US of A, land of liberty and justice for all - knowingly choose a man who unashamedly propagates racism, xenophobia, sexism, isolationism, greed, fear and disregard for the stewardship of this planet? What will we say to our children? I grieve with my friends and neighbors …

Another RSVP this Christmas season? Advent beckons

It's the most wonderful time of the year. For me, at least, it typically is.

I truly enjoy this Christmas season full of festive cheer: hanging lights on the fir tree, unpacking the ornaments and memories from a dusty Christmas bin, chestnuts roasting on an open fire, making snow angels, sipping egg nog, watching Home Alone, wrapping gifts. Christmas!

As I grow older, though, my eyes are obtaining new lenses to see the gorge that often lies between Christmas and Advent.

Though the wider culture doesn't use the term "Christmas" any more, in view of the diverse beliefs represented in Western culture, Christmas still stands a monolithic tree whose branches reach wide in the culture. We've built an entire consumer mindset as well as a strong dose of nostalgia from this festive season of giving, having transgressed a two-thousand millennia wide boundary water from the banks of Bethlehem's stable. For many, Christmas - or "the holidays" - is a wonderfull…