Faces Beyond Sacred Walls
First Edition Design ebook Publishing
Publication date: February 2012
Digital Book format: ePub (Adobe DRM)
You save: $1.00 (11%)
Faces Beyond Sacred Walls is not a how-to book as much as it is one for individual and church-corporate self-reflections about their social advocacy role to the community of the poor and oppressed. The author takes the reader on a self-examining journey through the difficult and often painful introspective process for addressing the Church's social advocacy role in response to God's original mandate for the poor found throughout the Bible. Using Luke 4:18-19, 21 as his foundational biblical principle for writing, the author stresses the Church, by divine design, has a dual role: evangelism (salvation) and mission (benevolence or poverty relief). In any given context, they may and should complement each other. However, there should be no conflict between ones' commitment as disciples to evangelism and poverty relief. They are hand-in-hand. Through biblical narratives, the author brings the reader to focus on inner conviction about the advocacy's role of the local church. He begins with the premise that the fundamental starting point for transformation and social engagement is our recognition of the integral value in humanity, the beauty of God so often hidden by sin and failure and pain and brokenness. As you read, you will discover the artful dialogue the author implores in highlighting the importance of self-examination towards transformation and social engagement for the purpose of calling the body of Christ in local churches to committed service and ministry to the community of the poor and oppressed. The author makes it plain that if it is our goal to know Christ and make Him known, then Christ will reveal Himself to us as we come face-to-face with "the least of these" in ways we will never meet Him in a Bible study, prayer meeting, or sermon. The author painstakingly argues and engages the reader through such subject matters as God's Mandate for Social Advocacy, The Early Church Concerns for the Poor, Theological Claims for Social Engagement, The Church's Answer to Poverty, Leadership Paradigm Shift, Social Advocacy Challenges, and Rethinking Programs of the Church. Each subject is designed to present a forum for relevant conversation for anyone concerned about the plight of the poor, poverty, lack of relief or means of navigating the bureaucratic system to access such relief, and the role of the church in such a situation. Using the idea of walls, the reader is drawn into an opportunity for serious reflection and dialogue about church-community relationships. Important, because as the author explains, beyond our "specific" sacred walls you will find the many obscure faces of a socially-hurting society: faces that tell stories. Too often, they are specific faces reduced to nothing more than statistics and, at deeper level, testimonies against churches in their community of influence. They are the poor, deemed marginalize by way of costs spent on their behalf and needs that remain unfulfilled. Seldom are they seen as individuals with personalities and considered as deserving of respect. They are nothing more than obscure faces...waiting to be acknowledged. The conclusion of the author is the church has an obligation to engage the entire membership in a journey of discovery about what God is calling them to be, to know, and to do in their lives, and how they can exercise that calling through the church. It is the journey to understand oneself as living in the presence of God and actively engaging in the disenfranchised poor and oppressed community for relief from injustice, brokenness, and suffering. The world is watching to see who truly loves others enough to take action. God is watching to see who is like Him and will love a poor and needy world. One thing for sure, when the church (collectively and individually) makes social advocacy a priority in its life and ministry, it can never expect to be the same.