The Hole in Our Gospel

August 6, 2009 by  
Filed under Book and Movie Reviews

Written By Richard Stearns 
Reviewed By Robin Shope 

The Hole In Our Gospel Will Change Your Heart When You Discover What God Expects of Us.  WORLD VISION PRESIDENT RICHARD STEARNS CALLS CHRISTIANS TO EXAMINE THE HOLE IN OUR GOSPEL.  Stearns' First Book Informs, Inspires Action.  I am not much of a non-fiction reader but the author Richard Stearns has converted me.  The synopsis and artful book cover drew me to it.

"This is a story of how a CEO faced his own struggle to obey God, whatever the cost, and his passionate call for Christians to change the world by actively living out their faith.  Believing that the “good news” is more than a private transaction between God and us, Stearns challenges readers with this question: What does God expect of us?  Two thousand years ago, twelve people changed the world.  Stearns believes it can happen again.”  –World Vision

Personal Application: As a former missionary who has served in third world nations—and continues with her service to helping the needy in America and abroad, I want to review what the book did for me personally.  I felt a quick connection to the author.  His heart and words were my experience.  Only he gave me a reminder of why we are actually here on earth; to serve.  In my air conditioned house, humble as it is, Stearns reminded me that my work is far from finished.

When I first came back from the mission field, many years ago, I thanked God for hot water every time I turned on the faucet. Every time I put food into my mouth I thanked God.  When I laid down at night and pulled the clean sheet up over my body, I thanked God.  I need to return to those first days…we become so complacent.

The thought began to go through my head…what if I had not been born to my parents?  What if I had been born to a poor villager some place in the world?  And this feeling of, because I was born in this nation of the United States, I was born to help others.

What is so unique about the book (reflected in both the title and book cover) is if you go through the gospels and take out every place that talks about helping the poor, there will be hardly anything left of the Bible at all.

Rich Stearns gets to the meat of the matter by singling out just one nation that needs attention (multiply this by thousands of places just like this on earth).  He gives us a new journey, a new vision one that is Biblically oriented.  It doesn't matter what we have done, it is what we are doing now, today.  This book lets us know that the contribution of EACH of us is tantamount to truly making a dent in the ravages of poverty and the illnesses that go along with it.  And we must.

The book is endorsed by amazing people and as I pass this book around in my circle of Christian friends, they all feel an incredible call on their lives to do something more.  This is an inclusive book that everyone should read; Christians and non-Christians; everyone.

Thank you, Mr. Stearns and World Vision.  And the glory goes to God.

To find out more information about the book and Stearns, you can visit www.theholeinourgospel.com.  You’ll find on this site a lot of great resources and supplemental material to the book.  You can also read Rich’s blog and engage in a forum discussion there.  It’s a fantastic site – I encourage you to check it out!

Reviewer: Robin Shope a  teacher for twenty-five years, who is now enjoying my third year as the Special Education Coordinator at the Denton County Juvenile Justice System for at-risk kids.  Somewhere in between working and my fulltime life as a wife and mother, I am also a writer.  Mystery and romance are my genres—sometimes they intersect.  My husband Rick and I are former missionaries and for a time pastored a country church in Illinois.  Married for thirty-two years, we have two grown children.  Our first grandchild, Kingston, was born April 1 this year.  I have nearly two-hundred articles in print and my sixth book was released May 2009, Wildcard.  It’s about elections being taken over at the voting booth by a manipulation of the main frame.  I also have a series of romance books, The Turtle Creek Edition.  Salty Earth Pictures has optioned The Christmas Edition (November 2008) for a movie.  My weakness is cupcakes, especially if they are pink. Drop by my blog, The Serial Writings of Robin Shope, and read my online book, PASSAGES.  A new chapter is posted each week.  http://write2robinshope.blogspot.com/

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