Sunday, April 25, 2010

What Difference do it Make?

I can not tell you how excited I was to get this book in the mail.

If you have not read the first book,
Same Kind of Different as Me, I would absolutely recommend it. It is an amazing story of redemption, kindness, and compassion. It follows the experiences of 2 completely different men: Ron, a rich, white art dealer, and Denver, a feared, homeless black man. They become connected when Ron’s wife gets her husband involved in volunteering at a homeless shelter. The two men meet and completely change each other's lives.

What Difference Do it Make? continues the story of Ron and Denver, but also tells the stories of many others who were touched by their first book. It illustrates the ways God has led people to make differences in their own communities.

Homelessness and addiction are things that hit very close to home for me, and this book made me see things from a completely different perspective. It is always easy to turn your back on people who are, in your mind, hopeless. I have sometimes thought, selfishly, that if they really wanted help, they could get it. But a government program or a welfare check is not going to change someone.

People need love.

They need to know someone, anyone, actually cares about them.

It isn't a difficult book to read, but it will make you think.

It reminds us that it is not our place to judge. It is our job though, to love unconditionally, and to care for those who have nothing… those who are sick, hurting, addicted, offended, or lonely; those who are sometimes completely undeserving of our love.

In the book, Ron opens up about his father who was a alcoholic and all around mean person his entire life. As far as Ron had come helping the down-trodden, he still withheld compassion from his own dad. Sometimes we are able to sympathize with strangers, but continually hold grudges against family members and friends who have hurt us. The story really opened my eyes to the meaning of true, unconditional love, and helped me to see where I was denying it to people in my own life.

As Christians, we should be the most loving, compassionate people on Earth, yet so often we turn our backs on the very people who need us the most. I have been guilty of this myself so often, not even knowing where to begin. This book shows us that it doesn't matter who you are, or how many resources you have, we can all make a difference.

Read it. I promise you won't be disappointed.

Matthew 25:34-40(NASB)

34"Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.

35'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;

36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.'

37"Then the righteous will answer Him, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink?

38'And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You?

39'When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?'

40" The King will answer and say to them, '
Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'

Thank you to Thomas Nelson for sending me this wonderful book to review. All opinions are my own.