Laura's Reviews > The Hole in Our Gospel: What Does God Expect of Us? the Answer That Changed My Life and Might Just Change the World

The Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns
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May 29, 09

bookshelves: spring-thing-2009, 999-challenge, tnbrb

Rich Stearns presents reasons for why he believes we have a hole in our gospel if our faith has no outward expression, specifically changing the world we live in where we see poverty and suffering. He begins the book describing his journey from disadvantaged youth to president of a luxury goods corporation to president of World Vision and how his faith grew and he grew until he was able to accept the job at World Vision. These chapters challenge us to evaluate our lives and see if we are living for Christ, even in our jobs and lives as they are right now. He isn't saying everyone has to go work for a charity organization, but that wherever our job, we should be working for God's glory. That includes caring about the poor and needy.

Then he hits the hard part - the statistics that reflect real people. He works to convey the magnitude of the issues without losing our interest in the personal reality. Then he can get into the joyful news that we can all make a difference. He addresses a section to the Church and the critical question of why the church hasn't reached out more. This is not aimed at pastors, but the members, all of us who have failed to stand up and address the disparity between rich and poor in this day and age.

I think he's telling us that if we give and it doesn't hurt (isn't a sacrifice) we haven't really lived our faith. We are commanded to reach out to the homeless and help the widows and orphans in their distress. We are committing sins of omission in all the things we do not do. Is the church more comfortable holding to the traditions of men than in challenging the injustices in the world? We need faith and works, salvation and social reform.

The purpose and method of the book is clear and well done. I recommend it, with a warning - you will be convicted, even made uncomfortable by what he says. That's good news, and you can live out the whole gospel.
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