Shane is a great storyteller. He states that for folks of his generation political ideologies and religious doctrines just aren’t very compelling, even if they’re true. And stories disarm us. I think many of us would agree and Shane weaves creative and compelling stories into his wake up call to a very self-centered American church. Along with his teaching of a “simple way” he shares stories of a summer spent in
I have listed a few assorted thoughts from his book that spoke to me:
Telling about his experiences at youth revivals during his youth: I came to realize that preachers were telling me to lay my life at the foot of the cross and weren’t giving me anything to pick up. I was just another believer. I believed all the right stuff – that Jesus is the Son of God, died and rose again. I had become a “believer,” but I had no idea what it means to be a follower (p. 38).
Reflecting on his time with Mother Teresa and the lessons she taught him – I knew that my Calcutta was the United States, for I knew that we could not end poverty until we took a careful look at wealth.
Shane conducted a survey of people who claimed to be “strong followers of Jesus”. He asked whether Jesus spent time with the poor. Nearly 80 percent said yes. Later in the survey, I sneaked in another question. I asked this same group of strong followers whether they spent time with the poor, and less than 2 percent said they did. I learned a powerful lesson: We can admire and worship Jesus without doing what he did (p. 112).
It is a beautiful thing when folks in poverty are no longer just a missions project but become genuine friends and family with whom we laugh, cry, dream, and struggle (p. 128).
More to come...