Finding Faith in Freedom Fighting

Sara PomeroyI’m glad to have Sara Pomeroy sharing with us on the blog today. Sara is the Founder and Executive Director of the Richmond Justice Initiative. Here post is such an appropriate follow-up to yesterday’s post discussing discipleship and justice. It all starts here:

I was on my way to this speaking engagement dragging my feet a bit (not gonna lie) as I was not sure of the turn out and, as I suspected, there was a small group of 6 people. Given the crowd I decided to gather in a group together and share from my heart, but I wanted to hear their stories first of how they initially heard about the issue of Modern Day Slavery.

My message that evening was my personal story of going from worship leader to freedom fighter, the walk of faith it has been, and then informing them of how they can join the battle against injustice.

“When it comes to the work of justice, prayer is where we begin, prayers is how the battle is fought and prayer is how the battle against injustice is won.”

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Book Review: The Just Church

The Just Church“Has God called us to live safe lives?” That’s the question being pondered in the book, “The Just Church” by Jim Martin. The subtitle is equally as riveting, “Becoming a risk-taking, justice-seeking, disciple-making congregation.” For Christian leaders who embrace the whole gospel, this book is a call to action. If time allowed, I would write more posts on this book. (Let me know if you have read it or plan to read it and would like to have an online discussion in the fall.)

I’ve known that I have wanted to read this book for a while. It has been sitting on my shelf with countless other desired reads I was looking forward to devouring post seminary life. When I decided to complete my last independent study on biblical justice, however, I saw an excellent opportunity to read this book now. It is an International Justice Mission (IJM) resource and I finished it right before attending the Global Prayer Gathering a few weeks ago. Part of IJM’s mission and the focus of this book is to mobilize churches to live out God’s character as redeemed people who transform the world.

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Book Review: Reclaiming Eve ~ Identity & Calling for Women

Reclaiming EveI’m so excited to share this book review for my dear friend, Suzanne Burden, recent release, “Reclaiming Eve: The Identity & Calling of Women in the Kingdom of God.”

The book:

Reclaiming Eve: The Identity & Calling of Women in the Kingdom of God
By Suzanne Burden, Carla Sunberg, and Jamie Wright
Published by Beacon Hill Press

Why I picked up this book:

I had several reasons for picking up this book. For starters, this book is written by three women, Suzanne Burden, Carla Sunberg, and Jamie Wright, who all love the Lord and are faithful students of his Word. Not only do they care about the authority of the Word of God, but they also love the church, study church history, care about people, and firmly believe that God has a redemptive purpose for all women. I know this personally because one of these women is my prayer partner whom I have journeyed with through seminary studies.

Who should read Reclaiming Eve and why:

This is a book of substance. It takes what we know from Scripture and challenges us to apply those truths to our daily lives. The authors do this by first acknowledging the identity crisis that women face every day. Women are no different from men in our struggle to clearly define who we are and who we will serve. For Christians, much of those decisions are not simply determined in our homes of origin or the culture in which we live. Many Christian women desperately seek to find those answers in the truths of God’s Word, as we should.

The problems arise, however, when we seem to draw conflicting messages from the biblical text. What do we do with those passages like 1 Timothy 2:11-12: “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet” (NIV)? If you are a devout student of the Word, you cannot ignore them and you must dig to find out what they meant in the proper biblical context and what they mean for us today. In short, passages like these only affirm what we already know, that sin has entered the world and as a result, the relationships between God and humans, the relationships between men and women, and indeed all of our earthly relationships have been broken as a result of the Fall. However, this truth is not the beginning and it is certainly not the reality that God intends for his redeemed people.

The truth is that men and women were both created in the image of God. The truth is that God had every intention for Adam and Eve to live in harmony with each other and to rule the earth under his lordship. The truth is that women need each other and as Christians, God has called us into a great sisterhood of encouragement, love, and mentoring and we can do that only if we are secure in our identity in Christ and the contribution he has called us to make individually and collectively for his kingdom. The truth is that God wants us to bring all of ourselves to him because he is the only one who can heal us and make us whole. Only those who have been truly healed and restored can actively join in God’s work to restore his broken community, for God desires for all creation to grow and flourish. This is the hope that was ushered in by Christ and this is the hope and message of the gospel that is shared throughout this book for those who have an ear and desire to listen.

Who should read this book? Anyone who wants to own an identity that is shaped by the gospel’s message and understand their calling to commitment and community in the kingdom of God.

Continue reading at Christianity Today’s Gifted for Leadership.