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Monday, June 11, 2007

God in the Alley

God in the Alley is a great little book that I read over the last few weeks. He writes about seeing Jesus in people so as to love Him and them. He also writes about being Jesus to people as we grapple with who we are in brokenness. I found this book to be refreshing and real as he shares bits of personal and pastoral journey with the outcasts of Toronto. The stories of people he knows and cares for on the streets are great metaphors about being and seeing Jesus in a broken world.

You may want to check this book out if you are looking for a book that is not filled with guilt, but with hope that will help you see Jesus and inspire you to be Jesus. The stories are raw and real as to what living this kind of simplicity is all about in today's urban and suburban landscape. It's been a great tweak in my "people vision" as I seek to love and serve them. I have conscientiously been asking the question, "How do I see Jesus in and how do I be Jesus to this person that I am living life with right at this very moment." It's been hard but good as I mix it up everyday with people whom I may struggle caring for. But that's what I love about Paul's practical theology.

If you live in the Indianapolis area, Grace Community Church is offering a justice seminar that will feature Greg Paul. You may want to check it out.


Debbie Shaffer said...

Hey Seth! Just checkin'in...saw you at the back of the church a few weeks ago, but was catching up with former small group girls and when we were finally done gabbing you and Kelly were gone--as was everyone else!! Sorry the house hasn't sold yet. I just started this book--it was assigned to those of us going to Mississippi this year. I think I'm going to be glad I was "forced" to read it. Hugs to all the Rings! Debbie

Dr. Matt Rings said...

I've been reading Charle Colson's book "Loving God" and one of the chapters deals with social justice, a concept that was completely foreign to me. He had a great quote which opened up from scripture what it is. Jay Poppinga writes: "When we speak of justice in the biblical sense we....are talking about meeting need wherever it exists and particularly where it exists most helplessly." God cares especially for those who can't help themselves - the poor and needy the forgotten and helpless.
The book of Amos warned that the nation whose vested interests manipulated power structures for their own gain, at the expense of the poor, must face the judgement of an angry God.

"The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor" - Jesus quoting Isaiah 61:1-2

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