By Beth Snodderly
The printed title of Ed Stetzer’s 2012 book whimsically conveys his main point—God’s Kingdom is upside down and backwards to the world’s expectations.
Succinct truths like these are punctuated throughout the book:
- “If you are a follower of Jesus, you have been made a citizen of this kingdom” (p. 8).
- “We are God’s ‘store window’ on earth where he shows off his kingdom (p. 186).
- “The kingdom’s work is done in small ways by people living as agents of the King” (p. 227).
From the book, Hope Rises from the Land, written in 1955 by Ralph Almon Felton:
- “They come from many miles to see the devil. Even African pastors, deacons, and deaconesses come to the laboratory of Alice Strangway to see for themselves real ovilulu (evil spirits). They watch the moving microfiliaria that causes so much blindness in Angola. How could there be a worse devil! What a collection of devils to be seen through one microscope! Rickets, pellagra, anemias, goiter, scurvy, diarrhea, and many more.”
- “Here are the red and blue stained parasites of malaria.”
- “Three of my six babies left us because of these,” one mother sighs.
Read more about this book here.
In his 2013 book, Evil and the Justice of God, N.T. Wright wrote:
"The Christian imagination … needs to be awakened, enlivened and pointed in the right direction. … Christians need to sense permission, from God and from one another, to exercise their imaginations in thinking ahead into God’s new world and into such fresh forms of worship and service as will model and embody aspects of it. We need to have this imagination energized, fed and nourished, so that it is lively and inventive, not sluggishly going around the small circles of a few ideas learned long ago." (p. 126)
And, speaking of imagination...
Over at Reknew.org, Greg Boyd talks about the flesh being “shaped by Satan’s web of deception that deeply infects our imaginations. … We need to imagine truth and savor it; only then can the flesh that holds us in bondage be broken. We need to see pictures of grace in our minds and savor them ….”
Could a Holy Spirit-fueled imagination help us envision creative ways to join together to fight such things as disease in Jesus’ name?