In this no non-sense book, reliable spiritual guide, Will Willimon, invites readers to consider the gospel command to love (and not merely tolerate) those considered to be “Other” or outside mainstream Christian culture. Rooted in the faith of Israel and the Christian story and vision, Willimon brings a Wesleyan perspective to bear on what may be the hardest thing for people of faith to do: keeping and loving the “Other” as they are – without any need for them to become like us.
Emphasizing biblical teaching to receive Others for who they are and their differences as gifts and mysteries bearing the grace of God, Willimon also offers a strong critique of the privileged who all too often rush to speak of reconciliation and evade the injustice of huge inequalities faced by foreigners and strangers – as well as the antagonism the stranger experiences. He identifies concrete, everyday ways persons are formed in welcoming others without annihilating their differences.
Rooted in the New Testament understanding of Gentile outsiders grafted into the covenant community, Willimon invites readers to an on-the-ground faith that remembers the God who comes to us again and again through so-called outsiders, strangers, immigrants, and those without status. Beyond welcome, Christians must become “other” to the world, shaking off the dominant culture’s identity and privilege through practices of listening, humility, and understanding.
You’d be hard-pressed to overstate the extent to which fear, anxiety, and worry permeate our lives today. Fear wreaks havoc on our relationships and communities. It leads us into making bad decisions. It holds us back from the very pursuits that promise fulfillment and joy.
Making matters worse, not a week goes by when some new threat or calamity isn’t dominating the headlines. Why are there so many tragedies? we wonder. What will happen next?
As the senior pastor of a large, diverse church in America’s heartland, Adam Hamilton has seen the cost of fear up close. When he surveyed his congregation on how fear affects them, 2,400 people responded–and what they said was eye-opening. Eighty percent admitted to living with moderate or significant levels of fear.
Unafraid: Living with Courage and Hope in Uncertain Times is Reverend Hamilton’s insightful and impassioned response.
Drawing on recent research, inspiring real-life examples, and fresh biblical insight, Hamilton shows how to untangle the knots we feel about disappointing others, failure, financial insecurity, loneliness, insignificance, and aging. Then he helps readers understand and counter fears related to such outsize perils as terrorism, death, and the apocalypse.
Writing with generosity and intelligence, Hamilton shows how believer and unbeliever alike can develop sustaining spiritual practices and embrace Jesus’s recurring counsel: “Do not be afraid.” For anyone struggling with fear or wondering how families and communities can thrive in troubled times, Unafraid offers an informed and inspiring message full of practical solutions.