Readings

Four Recent Reads

One thing I LOVE about not being in school is that I can read whatever I want! It’s great.  Below are a few blurbs about four recent reads.

Radical by David Platt

I’ll let Platt tell you about the book himself, but these two points were good enough to type:

1. We hold each other accountable for socially taboo sins (adultery, murder, stealing, etc.) but often ignore sins that have unfortunately become the social norm in many of our churches (like working hard and simultaneously pursuing material possessions while ignoring the plight of the poor).

2. 150 years after slavery we look back and ask ourselves, “How could they have treated fellow human beings that way?”  Christ followers 150 years from now may look back and ask how we could live the lifestyles we do while thousands died from lack of food or water.

Ending Hunger Now: A Challenge to Persons of Faith by George McGovern, Bob Dole, and Donald E. Messer

I know it’s SO BAD, but I kind of rolled my eyes too when I read the title of this book.  “Ending World Hunger” sits almost on the same level as achieving “World Peace” in my mind. I accept complacency as the norm. (That’s awful!)  But the more I’ve studied it this year, the more it seems actually possible.

Ending Hunger Now touches on the importance of free trade, the involvement of the church, the debate over whether it’s right to look to genetically modified foods, working across the aisle in both the public and private sectors to solve hunger, and activism and sustainability at the community level. It’s insightful and pretty short-you can read it in a few hours.

Giving by President Bill Clinton

This one’s more of a skimmer.  If you’ve never ever volunteered or worked with a nonprof, read the whole book.  Otherwise, skim away.

In this book, President Clinton highlights lots of nonprofits and people who give their time, money, knowledge, resources, etc. to good causes around the world.  He also encourages his readers to support companies that give back to their communities and to know who and what we are supporting when we swipe our credit cards on a daily basis. While I don’t agree with all of his politics, people who use their positions of power to encourage others to live sacrificially are just the best.

Ever heard of eBay Giving Works?  Clinton writes about how you can sell an item on eBay and donate part or all of the final sale price to your chosen nonprof!  eBay delivers the donation directly to the charity and issues tax receipts to the seller.   Who knew?!

Generous Justice by Timothy Keller

I don’t even know where to start with this one.  Just buy it and read it already.  What is Justice?  How do we practically answer the call to Justice today? I think in black and white, but the older I get the more I realize how gray the answers to these questions are.

At least a few truths are clear.

1.) “One’s attitude toward the poor reveals one’s heart attitude toward Christ.”

2.) “Anyone who has truly been touched by the grace of God will be vigorous in helping the poor.”

3.) “Doing justice, then, requires constant, sustained reflection and circumspection.  If you are a Christian, and you refrain from committing adultery or using profanity or missing church, but you don’t do the hard work of thinking through how to do justice in every area of life-you are failing to live justly and righteously.”

This one’s PACKED with wisdom. Would recommend to anyone/everyone.

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