Faithful Witness in a Fractured World: Models for an Authentic Christian Life (How Not to Be  Crappy Christian) by Nicole Johnson & Michael Snarr AND Christ in Crisis: Why We Need to Reclaim Jesus by Jim Wallis AND Love Anyway: An Invitation Beyond a World That’s Scary as Hell by Jeremy Courtney ON SALE NOW


Faithful Witness in a Fractured World: Models for an Authentic Christian Life – How Not to Be  Crappy Christian by Nicole L. Johnson & Michael T. Snarr (Cascade) $18.00 As I explain below, a collection of great stories of ordinary folks doing good work in taking up their vocations as social activists with principles and insights gleaned from traits they each exhibited. A great study, important for all of us.

Christ in Crisis: Why We Need to Reclaim Jesus by Jim Wallis (HarperOne) $25.99 . The latest by Sojourners founder, a book he says may be the most important one he’s ever done. It’s about questions Jesus asked and their implication for us today in these trying times.  It’s brand new and I describe it a bit, below.


Love Anyway: An Invitation Beyond a World That’s Scary as Hell byJeremy Courtney (Zondervan) $17.99 . The brand new set of memories and stories from a peace activist who lives in the war-zones and needy places of the Middle East, learning to see beauty, stand for justice, and live beyond our fears into a better world. Wow.



All books mentioned show the regular retail price. When you order from Hearts & Minds we’ll deduct the 20% off discount. Our order form below takes you to our secure order form page and you can enter credit card numbers safely. Or just ask us to send you a bill if you’d rather pay later by check. Easy. We’re grateful to tell you about these kinds of books and hope you will support our indie bookstore by ordering some soon.  Thanks for caring.


I hope you saw the last BookNotes column which featured two serious books about world and domestic hunger. Silence Can Kill: Speaking Up to End Hunger and Make Our Economy Work for Everyone by our friend Art Simon (founder of the citizen’s anti-hunger lobby, Bread for the World) is a very important new book, up-to-date and informative. Although fewer children are starving to death than 50 years ago, this dare not lull us towards an optimistic apathy; needless starvation and chronic, painful poverty are evils that must be battled. Bread for the World may be the most important and effective anti-poverty organization because of the legislative work they do and the sheer scope of the impact of public policy (from foreign aid to funding for TANF and SNAP and the like.) You should read that book and learn how (and why) it all works.

Yes, Jesus said “the poor you will have with you always” but that is, I hope you know, a quote from Deuteronomy. He didn’t’ have to finish the sentence because they knew the indictment – therefore we are not to hardened our hearts or close our hands.  For a deep theological and Scripture dive into this topic of poverty in the Bible, see Always with Us?: What Jesus Really Said about the Poor by Liz Theoharis (Eerdmans; $25.00.)

Another book I highlighted in that review was I Was Hungry: Cultivating Common Ground to End an American Crisis by Jeremy Everett (Brazos; $16.99) which documents the exciting work done by the Texas Hunger Initiative.  I loved this book and the energetic stories of faith communities partnering with civic and even governmental agencies. No matter what state your in – the play of words and smile – you need this book! 

We know that some of our most loyal customers are rather brainy types, and look for us to highlight more scholarly books. (Although, truth be told, Art Simon is as scholarly on this topic as you may need; as I mentioned in that review, he knows some of the world’s leading economists, development scholars, think-tankers who spend their days crunching the numbers making his book very, very well-researched.)

There are plenty of more theoretical books, too. Think of the book released just this past summer, the magnum opus of Duke University scholar Luke Bretherton entitled Christ and the Common Life: Political Theology and the Case for Democracy (Eerdmans; $49.00.) It has been called “a tour de force, a “monumental achievement”, “a transformative contributions” and “impressively expansive.” He moves from secularity to pluralism to democratic ideals to what notions of neighborliness mean for our public thinking and, everyone agrees, breaks new and important ground.

Think of the much-discussed (although, in my opinion, not read or discussed enough) third volume in James K.A. Smith’s “cultural liturgies” trilogy, called Awaiting the King: Reforming Political Theology (Brazos Press; $22.99.) Think of the vital, serious study by Yuval Levin, The Fractured Republic: Renewing America’s Social Contract in the Age of Individualism (Basic Books; $17.99.) For deep Biblical study in conversation with political theorists like John Rawls, you’ve got to see the remarkable, new God’s Sabbath With Creation by CPJ founder James W. Skillen (Wipf & Stock; $35.00.) And don’t overlook (for whatever reason) the book I mentioned earlier this season, the recent, remarkably interesting and valuable collection called Evangelical Theologies of Liberation and Justice edited by Mae Elise Cannon & Andrea Smith (IVP Academic; $36.00.)

Less academic but so very foundational and wise – I recommend it for anyone wanting a uniquely and truly Christian way to think about the meaning of life and human flourishing – is the one I commended to you in the last BookNotes called Becoming Whole: Why the Opposite of Poverty is Not the American Dream (Moody Publishers; $15.99.)

Through all of these serious works are questions of what we mean by the common good, what social justice is and how a Biblical worldview gives us a framework that is beyond the ideological poles of left and right. The must-read political science book from this reformational Christian perspective is, as I say over and over here at BookNotes, Political Visions & Illusions: A Survey & Christian Critique of Contemporary Ideologies by David Koyzis with a thoughtful foreword by Richard Mouw (IVP Academic; $33.00.)

And yet, we have to think about how to live this stuff out. We need deep thinkers pondering the “neither left nor right” ideal, policy folks considering what reforms and norms should guide our proposals for the society we want to see, but we also have to respond to the awful poverty and injustice and racism we see here and now. We need truly Christian thinkers and public intellectuals but we need on-the-ground, daily discipleship, what Shane Claiborne calls “ordinary radicals.” People who pick up the cross of sacrifice, get involved with the issues of the day, learn to know the needs of the marginalized and accompany them towards fresh starts and new hopes. We need scholars and we need activists.

The brand new book called Faithful Witness in a Fractured World: Models for an Authentic Christian Life – How Not to Be  Crappy Christian by Nicole L. Johnson & Michael T. Snarr (Cascade) $18.00 [our sale price = $14.40] makes an important claim – that many young adults are drifting from faith (and sometimes loudly denouncing traditional religion) because it does not do this. Big name televangelists and Christian right loud-mouths condemn gays and mock science and want to push their views on everybody, but it seems they do little to care about the hurting, the disillusioned, the poor or oppressed. Unlike Francis Schaeffer – who some on the Christian right seem to claim to like, even if they haven’t read his more serious works – they don’t show that they want to weep with those who weep over our culture’s lack of compassion and the injustices that are so prevalent these days, from gross injustices in immigration policy to police violence to species extinction to sexual abuse cover-ups, even in exceedingly pious evangelical churches. They don’t offer young seekers “honest answers to honest questions.” They just want to fight culture wars and defeat anybody they don’t like.

And so, younger folks are leaving the fold, rejecting evangelical purity culture and conservative economics and right wing politics in record numbers. If the cool songs and hip branding and relevant video clips attracted young seekers who found some evangelical churches relevant for a while, those very churches, insofar as they’ve adopted an a-political or right wing agenda, have turned off the very young ones they previously attracted. Nobody contests that this is one of the big religious stories of our time, the exodus from the evangelical community and the animosity many feel about them, indicating an erosion of moral authority among their leaders.  At the very least, read Unchristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks about Christianity…and Why It Matters by David Kinnaman & Gabe Lyons (Baker; $16.00) or You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church . . . and Rethinking Faith by David Kinnaman (Baker; $16.99) to get a sense of the data and the urgency of this huge concern.

Or just dive right into Faithful Witness in a Fractured World: Models for an Authentic Christian Life – How Not to Be  Crappy Christian.

Enter, as your guides, Niki Johnson and Michael Snarr, friendly and popular profs at a small liberal arts college in Ohio. As a religious studies teacher (and former campus minister) and poly sci teacher (who has served with Christian Peacemaker teams and other lively activist groups), these two listen well to their young students, work eagerly with the emerging adults these college students are, and help them navigate the big questions of their search for direction, their making of meaning, their grappling with the faith of their childhood and their new experiences in college. Like most caring professors, they do more than relay information in the classroom but are accompanying students on a journey of discovery and walking alongside them in these critical years.

And so it comes up. Former church kids and new atheists alike, wondering what in the world is that rabid “God hates fags” guy about? Why do churches seem so judgmental? Why would religious leaders be so happy about the harsh anti-immigration policies of President Trump?  Why don’t churches invite their members to serious dreams, to big issues, to passion and conviction about making the world a better place? Why are so many religious folks, to use the language their students give them, “shitty Christians”? Not a bad question, eh?

Heaven help us all, when a common vulgarity is the way some describe the religious people they know.

Although, I guess it isn’t as bad as what Jesus called religious leaders in his day. (See Matthew 23 if you don’t believe me.) The problems of hypocrisy and power-mongering among the religious are perennial, it seems.

Now here’s the thing: as Johnson and Snarr show in their new book, and show beautifully, I might add, not everybody who follows Jesus is all that bad. Sure there are “crappy Christians” and no not one of us gets it fully right. But there are lots of “ordinary radicals” out there, taking up causes, serving their neighbors, living self-sacrificially to help others, being servants of the poor and winsome agents of the sorts of goodness Bob Goff describes in Love Does and Everyone Always. Bob has an all-new devotional coming out mid-October, by the way, called Live in Grace, Walk in Love: A 365-Day Journey (Thomas Nelson; $16.99.) You may want to pre-order that from us at our 20% off discount.  I suspect we’ll have it a bit early.

We have any number of books that hold up some of these kinds of exemplary Christian leaders who made a difference in big ways. There are anthologies that look at Dorothy Day and Martin Luther King, Caesar Chavez and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Desmond Tutu and Mother Theresa and the like. Just think of David Gushee & Colin Holtz’s recent Moral Leadership for a Divided Age: Fourteen People Who Dared to Change Our World (Brazos Press; $24.99) or the exquisite, serious, Can I Get a Witness?: Thirteen Peacemakers, Community-Builders, and Agitators for Faith and Justice edited by Charles Marsh, Shea Tuttle & Daniel Rhodes (Eerdmans; $26.99) which we’ve raved about here at BookNotes or a personal favorite by Mae Elise Cannon Just Spirituality: How Faith Practices Fuel Social Action (IVP; $17.00.) I’ve mentioned these before and they really are good.

These can inspire us, pointing younger folks (and others) to real models of coherent and feisty Christian change-making. I named them and their prices for you so you might consider ordering them. These really are great collections and they truly make a difference if we read them openly.

(To see how one old saint, Dorothy Day, influenced an elite public intellectual in his own road to recovered faith, see the nice recent essay in America about David Brooks.)

But you know what? You do, I’m sure. These books, as inspiring as they may be, aren’t usually as transformative as we would wish because they are about big-name heroes. Few of us have the status or calling of William Wilberforce. Who of us can be in a place like Nelson Mandela and become what he became? Who of us are situated in a context like Oscar Romero? Admire them as we should, and learn from them as we can, at the end of the day, I’m simply no Bonhoeffer and you are no Dorothy Day.

Which is what makes “How Not to Be a Crappy Christian”, that is, Faithful Witness in a Fracture World, so very, very good. It follows the lives of a handful of people the authors admire, some who are former students that they’ve come to know well, that are living out faith in concrete ways, in authentic ways, sometimes in rather dramatic ways. But they are fairly normal people, doing good work but nothing that will catapult them to international fame. Our authors call them “unsung.” These folks are living what John Perkins once called “a quiet revolution.”

In Faithful Witness… Johnson and Snarr tell us about this handful of folks, serious Christians of a rather activist sort, and ask what traits they all hold in common. How did they discern their call into their respective passions or ministries? What shaped their moral imagination? In what ways do they sustain their good work? How do they understand their identities? How did they get a broad view of the scope of God’s redemption – repairing the world, restoring creation – when they most likely were introduced to faith as a personal, inner sort of salvation.

Unlike some of these other anthologies that introduce us to valiant (super) Christian lives to serve as models for us, Faithful Witness…does not give a chapter to each person, but rather, each chapter explores a sustainable spiritual trait, a practice or way of understanding faith that, it seems, most of their case studies exemplify. Almost all of their friends to which they introduce us had these similar sorts of stories, a constellation of traits that became the insights that created the book. These are case studies, and the authors nicely extrapolate from these interesting stories and fascinating testimonies a handful of features that will allow any of us move beyond our crappy religious lives.

UCC leader (and Messiah College professor) Douglas Jacobsen says,

“This is the best and most refreshing discussion of what it means to be a Christian that I have read in years… it winsomely preaches the gospel without ever getting preachy.”

I think Jacobsen (himself author of a lovely book called Gracious Christianity) is mostly right, although being a little preachy ain’t a bad thing, in my view, and this book has plenty of passion and zeal and wit and sass. The authors are deeply committed to seeing a better sort of model for those of us who want to help bridge the fractured and hurting world and repair the “branding problem” that Christianity has these days. They do generally write like scholars, documenting their subject, presenting the evidences, making their cases by quoting their subjects extensively, being nicely teacherly because they want us to get it; these testimonials and the insights they draw from them become somewhat of a manifesto. This makes for a book that is oddly both scholarly and yet easy to happily read, exciting and restrained, winsome and hard-hitting. You’ll be glad to meet their friends and learn about their practices of holistic discipleship. And you’ll learn from them. And have fun doing it.

Kudos to Johnson and Snarr not only for telling us these stories and introducing us to these witnesses, but for drawing the principles from them, sifting through their narratives to find humble, gospel treasure, as an alternative to crappy Christianity.

The Apostle Paul, I might note, used a bit of dung language himself when he exclaimed that anything other than following Jesus and knowing Him was a pile of crap. (Don’t blame me, let alone Niki and Michael; if you don’t like the lingo, take it up with the Holy Spirit who inspired Saint Paul.) But here’s the thing: for Paul, knowing Jesus was not unrelated to following Him. We are one with Christ, transformed from the inside out to become people remade into His own image and members of his subversive, counter-cultural community. This has huge, huge, socio-political implications and although none of the characters described in Faithful Witness in a Fractured World are professional Biblical scholars, they would, I think, resonate with the anti-Empire, pro-justice themes in the detailed exploration in Romans Disarmed: Resisting Empire/Demanding Justice by Sylvia Keesmaat & Brian Walsh (Brazos Press; $26.99.) If you missed my review of that stunning book, check it out, HERE.

Which reminds me: if there were any weaknesses to these “models for an authentic Christian life” I’d have wished to learn more about their own engagement with Scripture.  Even as these young Jesus followers and their creative witness become springboards to deeper reflections about holistic faith, church and state, white supremacy, and Christian social ethics (the authors are United Methodists, so there’s some good Wesleyan stuff, too) there isn’t much about the practice of Bible study to sustain a faithful sort of social gospel.

Sure, good guys like Bob Goff humorously quips in his own talks that he’s tired of mere “Bible studies” and would rather be a part of “Bible doings” but anybody that knows Goff knows he quotes the Bible by heart endlessly. As do Shane Claiborne and Jim Wallis and Lisa Sharon Harper and Miroslav Volf and Ron Sider and Donna Barber, to name a few leaders in the movement to help Christian folks be more active in caring for God’s world. 

Johnson and Snarr quote lots of reliable Bible-based thinkers to undergird their call to a gracious sort of “non-crappy” Biblical social gospel such as Al Tizon and his Whole & Reconciled: Gospel Church and Mission in a Fractured World and Lisa Sharon Harper and her The Very Good Gospel and NT Wright’s Surprised by Hope.  Although their cast of characters tends more towards Hauerwas & Willimon’s Resident Aliens and The Upside Down Kingdom by Don Kraybill and the feisty multi-ethnic perspectives of Healing Our Broken World by Grace Ji-Sun Kim, they also quote John Piper and Tim Keller. Which makes this a truly fascinating book, not just a hall of heroes, but a study of real life activists, living out their faith, making a difference. There’s a lot to learn, and we’re happy to recommend this book.

Christ in Crisis: Why We Need to Reclaim Jesus Jim Wallis (HarperOne) $25.99 This brand new book just arrived a few hours ago so I’ve hardly got a chance to look at it. I wish I had an earlier version, or took time to study it before telling you about it, but it so fits this week’s theme that I simply have to announce it. I’m very excited.

I’m excited to share this for a number of reasons. Wallis is an old acquaintance and, in fact, he was one of the first authors we ever had in-store here in Dallastown, decades ago, when we crammed a dozen or so people into our small space. (That was before the expansion when we doubled our size back in the last century.) I’ve always read Sojourners and we’re glad to still carry the magazine here. I’ve read and appreciated all of Jim’s many books but his first two – Agenda for Biblical People and The Call to Conversion — were very, very important for Beth and me. I have a hunch that Christ in Crisis may be somewhat of a return to his earliest evangelical roots. It is, after all, a book about Jesus.

And he says it may be the most important book he’s ever written.

The thesis of this brand new book is simple enough: the way the religious right has so enthusiastically entered politics in a fairly undiscerning way, behind the morally suspect President Trump, makes us all wonder if they’ve lost their first love for the Lord Jesus. Jerry Falwell, Junior was quoted saying not long ago that he simply doesn’t look to Jesus at all for his politics. Can you believe it?

(Of course, this isn’t new: Martin Luther King complained (in Stride Toward Freedom) about Niehbuhr trying to talk him out of Jesusy nonviolence and Deitrich Bonhoeffer, as Eric Metaxas documents in his big biography, was frustrated that he studied all manner of things at Union Seminary in the year he was there, but they failed to talk about Jesus.)

And so, has the church become captive to the modern American Babylon? This was an early theme in Sojourners when they were more obviously influenced by William Stringfellow and Daniel Berrigan and the like. Things were dire, and this radical “politics of Jesus” was counter-imperial, helping us say “no” to Empire and power and such. It may be the crass compromise of the evangelical right in these Trump years may have shaken Jim back to his roots – a call to conversion to the ways of Jesus.

In the book Wallis has ten major chapters, one introductory, one at the end, the other eight, a question evoked by a question Jesus Himself asked. He asks how Jesus addresses “the neighbor question”, “the truth question”, “the image question”, “the power question”, “the fear question”, “the Caesar question”, “the peacemaker question”, and “the discipleship question.”

I think it is a good thing that some non-Christians endorse the book saying that they are drawn into thinking about the life of Jesus through this hard-hitting, socially relevant reflection. The last chapter is called “Becoming Salt, Light, and Hope” and the Epilogue is a lovely reflection on “The Light of the World.” Agree or not with all of Jim’s stands (or lack thereof) there is no doubt he’s a good preacher, and this heart-felt and passionate manifesto is going to help us recalibrate our faith back to the center of our Biblical story: the person and work of Jesus the Christ.

The soul of the nation is at risk, he says, and these eight questions from Jesus have to be answered. Wallis thinks that getting these things right about Jesus will have helpful and healing consequences in the broken, divided culture.

There is a movement afoot called “Reclaiming Jesus” with a document (of course, there is always a document) and Jim offers it at the end of the book. It’s worthy of our prayer and reflection and oodles of good elders have signed it – from Barbara Williams Skinner to Wes Granberg-Michaelson, from Ronald Sider to Bishop Vashti McKenzie. From Otis Moss to Pegter Borgdorff, Richard Rohr to Will Willimon, JoAnne Lyon to John Perkins, there’s many good leaders from a variety of faith traditions within the broad Body of Christ, although – since it is somewhat of a rebuke to the accommodation of conservative evangelicals, it is almost exclusively Protestant.

The book just arrived, so you can be among the earliest readers, joining this call for the sake of the common good to refocus on Jesus and take seriously a public theology connected to His teachings. Here are what some advanced reviewers said:

“Wallis courageously calls us to de-Americanize the Gospel and reclaim Jesus. Take and read; these words will feed your heart, and if heeded, heal the soul of the nation. Wallis resurrects the spiritual wisdom and moral clarity so desperately needed to speak words of prophetic power, integrity, and truth.”– Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, author Future Faith: Ten Challenges Reshaping Christianity in the 21st Century

“Jim Wallis reminds us that the core of Christianity is not a policy or a principle but a person–Jesus Christ. For anyone who wants to carefully ponder how to live as a person of faith, a loving neighbor, and a concerned citizen… Christ in Crisis is an indispensable guide.”– Jemar Tisby, author of The Color of Compromise

“This is Jim Wallis at his best, a ‘Jesus book’ better than any I’ve seen in some time, and could not be more timely or more challenging. It offers a drink of fresh water to anyone who has felt despair at the state of the world–Christian and non-Christian alike.”– Richard Rohr, author of The Universal Christ

“To choose to follow Jesus is necessarily to engage in a quarrel with the world. For fifty years, Jim Wallis has worked to help Americans remember the politics of Jesus. His Christ in Crisis is a timely reminder of what it means to confess, ‘Jesus is Lord.'”– William J. Barber, II, President of Repairers of the Breach & co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival 

Jim Wallis is faithful, relentless, and intrepid in voicing the prophetic reality of Gospel faith. He does not flinch at truth-telling, and he is not weary of hope-telling. This book will provide energy, grit, and courage for the living of these days.”– Walter Brueggemann, author of The Prophetic Imagination

Love Anyway: An Invitation Beyond a World That’s Scary as Hell Jeremy Courtney (Zondervan) $17.99 I can’t tell you how glad we are to get to announce this book by a friend we respect immensely. We’ve only been together two or three times, I thinks – once for a great evening when he allowed us to host him at our church as he shared about his first book, Preemptive Love and the amazing organization he created mostly arranging heart surgeries for children in the radiation enhanced war zones of Iraq.

As I wrote when I did a long review at BookNotes about Preemptive Love and as I’ve often said as I’ve commended his ministry, I was delightfully surprised to see such a passion for peacemaking from a Southern evangelical doing overseas missionary work — the great subtitle of Preemptive Love is “Pursuing Peace One Heart at a Time.” (Howard Books; $16.00.) God has worked quite a shift in many younger evangelicals with a global vision who have written widely about this – a middle Eastern missions guy name Rick Love comes to mind, as does Carl Medearis . They have come to embrace peacemaking (between nations and between religions) as central to the overall Christian missionary task. With scholars like Al Tizon writing major works like Whole & Reconciled: Gospel, Church, and Mission in a Fractured World (which is cited in the Faithful Witness book reviewed above) we see a good and healthy shift uniting not only words and deeds, evangelism and justice, but peacemaking and reconciliation. The kingdom of God really does include the hope of restoration!

Jeremy found himself in a war zone helping children – sick in part from the product of the Gulf Wars – in a culture torn by mistrust and violence between Jews, Muslims, Christians, and others as he was thinking about these very things. To hear a philanthropic medical mission also talking about multi-ethnic reconciliation and global peace-building efforts more than caught our attention. We rejoiced and celebrated the amazing, rare, brave, solid work of Preemptive Love. It is compassionate and savvy, bold and brave, evangelical and ecumenical. And we still tell people that Jeremy’s memoir, Preemptive Love is a great, great read.

And just today we got a carton of the brand new paperback Love Anyway. I would love to describe this in better detail, but I can assure you it is jam-packed with stories of Jeremy and his teams heading off into war zones. There are heartbreaking reports from his time with the viciously persecuted Yazidis. (For a short season he was truly one of the world’s spokespersons for this awful standoff in Northern Iraq as he was there trying to serve the poorest of the world’s poor.)

Some of these chapters are fairly short and they seem to have the feel of a memoir. There are memories and stories galore, Biblical insight, missionary bravado, honest testimony of his fear and brokenness. He and his family have seen so much and I hope you, like me, can’t wait to read about it.

Love Anyway starts off on the first page of the first chapter with a sort of preface, an invitation to you, the reader. That first chapter is called “Your Presence Is Requested on the Other Side of the Way Things Are.”

In a footnote (I always start with footnotes!) Jeremy says,

In my first book, Preemptive Love, I called this place that I was pursuing The Far Country, but I’ve since seized onto this new phrase, “The More Beautiful World Our Heart Know is Possible” thanks to the wonderful book by Charles Eisenstein by the same name, as he deftly puts words to so many of my longings.

So, Love Anyway is a call deeper in to this Far County, this beautiful world that we believe just might be possible. I think many of our Hearts & Minds customers and even occasional BookNotes readers will love it.

Look: I really think the above books are all important.

We need scholarly analysis and a balanced, coherent framework for thinking about public justice in our hard times. I listed a good handful of important, serious works.

We need testimonies and stories to keep us going – those of the famed and sometimes martyred are good, inspiring, important, even. I named a few really great collections.

But I’m really glad I got to tell you about Faithful Witness in a Fractured World: Models for an Authentic Christian Life about some good souls who, in the hands of the authors Nikki Johnson and Michael Snarr, help us learn how not to be a “crappy Christian.”

Jim Wallis helps us learn to focus, or re-focus on Jesus, on His answers to life’s biggest questions as we try to live out the public implications of our deep, personal belief in Jesus as Lord. Christ in Crisis: Why We Need to Reclaim Jesus is a vital, important manifesto.

But this —  Love Anyway: An Invitation Beyond a World That is Scary as Hell is as honest and urgent as can be. It is the beautifully written tale of one man and his seeking, his serving, how he and his family and the movement he’s started are truly making a notable difference in some of the most hellish places on Earth. And he finds beauty and goodness there. He and his friends are creating home amidst the displaced. Now that’s worth reading about, eh?

Like I said, it’s brand new. Here is what some early readers report:

 I was transfixed by Jeremy’s writing. This book, this way of life, is a game changer. Propaganda, hip-hop and spoken word artist

Jeremy Courtney understands the moving truth that hate breeds violence, and he acts on that truth in ceaselessly bold preemptive love for the enemy. I strongly endorse his actual life of peacemaking. We Koreans urgently need a peacemaker like Mr. Courtney – truly shalom incarnate – today. Dr. Han Wan-sang, former deputy prime minister of South Korea, former president of the Korean Red Cross Society

I read every single word, perched on the edge of my seat… You’ll keep turning the pages as fast as you can. Jen Hatmaker, New York Times bestselling author of Of Mess and Moxie!

Love Anyway is raw, honest, wrenching, and beautiful. Jeremy lays it all out there with a story that will rip your heart out and inspire you. This book is a call to put everything on the line. Shane Claiborne, activist and author of Irresistible Revolution and Beating Guns



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