book reviews: world changing

I got two books in the mail on the same day a few weeks ago, which was an interesting coincidence, because I think the authors would find a lot of common ground.

Palmer Chinchen wrote True Religion: Taking Pieces of Heaven to Places of Hell on Earth.  He challenges Christians to be part of the solution to the problems in terrible places in the world.  Seeing the need in poor countries is life-changing, purpose-giving, and he maintains we need to act boldly instead of assuming we as individuals can’t make a difference.  He focuses a lot on the needs in third world countries.  And in a way I see his point.  Going to the neediest of the needy makes sense in a practical triage-nurse sort of way. I won’t soon forget the needy ones I met in Ethiopia, and I am proud of my sister Sophie and her decision to do medical mission work in Africa.   The tone of True Religion is perhaps too prescriptive.  Not everyone’s life work is in a 3rd world country, after all.  Nonetheless, the message is thought-provoking.

Julie Ferwerda wrote One Million Arrows: Raising Your Children to Change the World.   This book focuses on truly purposeful parenting:  building strong relationships and modeling right priorities so kids can grow up as ‘arrows’, strong and well-equipped to reach others for Jesus.  Just what are we teaching our kids by our choices, both small and large?   I want my kids to do more than play video games all day.  I want them to grow up loved and loving others, using their time wisely, noticing needs, and finding joy in serving God.  I want them to grow up embracing the knowledge that their lives have great value, that they were put here for a purpose, and that God will reveal that purpose in His time and in His way.  This book renewed  my own vision for my family, and I am blessed to have gotten the chance to read it.

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(I was given both of these books by the authors. The opinions expressed about them are my own.)