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Last week I had the chance to be a guest speaker for three days at John Brown University in Arkansas. During my time there I joined in on a class discussion about the History of Poverty in the United States of America and one of the students asked me for a reading list of books that I have found particularly useful / helpful / transformative during the past several years, especially as it concerns the work of caring for the “least of these” or being mindful about social justice.

I love reading (and I've been in grad school at Regent College), and thus there are many titles. This list is by no mans conclusive—but at least it's a start. If you've read any of these, I'd love to hear your thoughts about them, or how they've impacted you in the journey of living out this wonderfully mysterious thing called faith.

A Theology of Human Rights
Justice: Rights & Wrongs by Nicholas Wolterstorff
Justice & Love by Nicholas Wolterstorff
Until Justice and Peace Embrace by Nicholas Wolterstorff
Old Testament Ethics for the People of God by Christopher Wright
A Moral Vision of the New Testament by Richard Hayes
The One, The Three and the Many by Colin Gunton

"Image of God" / Creation / Redemption
The Lost World of Genesis One by John Walton
God in Creation by Jurgen Moltmann
Surprised by Hope by N.T. Wright

Intentional Simplicity
What are People For? by Wendell Berry
Sex, Economy, Freedom & Community by Wendell Berry
Living on Less and Liking it More by Maxine Hancock
Living More with Less by Doris Johnson Longacre
Better Off by Eric Brende

Intentional Relationships / Community
Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Irresistible Revolution by Shane Claiborne
Plunging into the Kingdom Way by Tim Dickau
Monk Habits for Everyday Peopleby Dennis L. Okholm

Spiritual Discipline / Practice
Spiritual Theology by Simon Chan
Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster
The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard
After You Believe by N.T. Wright

The Sabbath by Abraham Heschel
Living the Sabbath by Norman Wirzba
The Rest of God by Mark Buchannan
Keeping the Sabbath Wholly by Marva Dawn

Lectio Divina / Spiritual Reading
Eat This Book by Eugene Peterson
"Meditation in a Toolshed" by C.S. Lewis (essay)

Comment Author Comment Text

Member Since:

Hi Mike....Thanks for the fantastic reading suggestions. I have already read quite a few on this list. Irresistible Revolution and Under the Overpass really moved me forward into the work I am now doing on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. I met last week with John Ashmen at AGRM and he is meeting us at the reservation in May to observe the problems there with the hopes of putting the first ever Rescue on a reservation. Pretty exciting. I wish I was there now so I can drive up to Rapid and hear you speak at Cornerstone. Thanks for all you do. Peace and Grace in the name of the Master...KC Willis

Posted: 2012-03-08 22:53:51

Member Since:

Hi Mike- I just finished your book and I was overwhelmed, because it seemed to be exactly what I needed to read at that moment in time. I am a "formerly" homeless person, struggling with some form or other of addiction, and in transition from the streets to "normal, everyday" life. I am a modern day hobo- hopping freights, traveling from place to place, and have been for years. I recently bought an RV and plan to take a spiritual journey of my own over the summer and fall, before returning to school, on my own, and writing my own stories of the beautiful street friends I know, the lives I have encountered, my own frustrating experiences of being persecuted for being dirty, homeless, unwanted, and invisible. For a long time I have felt trapped and unhappy at being off of the streets and distanced from the street and my friends, and after a period of self-imposed isolation and self-study, I have decided to try to reaffirm my relationship with God, whom I have seemingly left behind in the past few months, due to my unhappiness at not feeling a sense of belonging in any community other than the streets. Thank you for your book, as it has made a true difference.

Posted: 2012-03-31 13:58:55

Member Since:

Hey Mike,

My name is Angel Peterson and we met at Free To Be the Change in Spring Lake Park, MN a couple weekends ago. I got the go-ahead to do the devotional as a study at our church and am wondering if you have any other video footage you'd be willing to share so I can supplement discussions each week with it? Let me know what that would require.





Posted: 2012-04-12 18:54:10


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