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Tom Sine: LIVE LIKE YOU GIVE A DAMN! Join the Changemaking Celebration - An Excerpt

May 25, 2016

 

LIVE LIKE YOU GIVE A DAMN!
Join the Changemaking Celebration

By Tom Sine

An Excerpt:

Very Good News

The good news first. God seems to be at work not only through people of faith but also through people of compassion who are bringing welcome change to our world.  Much of this new changemaking is being led by young innovators from Gen Y (those born between 1981 and 1997) and Gen Z (those born between 1998 and 2014). Since Gen Y and Gen Z are the first digital generations, they seem to be more aware of the daunting social, economic, and environmental challenges facing our world. Most importantly, a surprising number of them are determined to do something about it

I believe the Spirit of God may well be using the lives of these young social innovators, who are largely outside the church, to entice and challenge those of us in the churches to become much more a part of this remarkable new movement that is making such a difference in the lives of our most vulnerable neighbors. Why would any follower of the servant Jesus want to settle for less and miss the best- discovering how God can more fully use our lives to make a little differ­ence in our troubled world?

On our global tour we will visit an array of often younger social innovators who through groups like the Transitions Town network in Britain, Australia, and the US, are fashioning more sustainable, resilient, and flourishing local communities-and are having the time of their lives doing it. You will also meet this new generation of social entrepreneurs from all over the planet who are creating a range of new businesses with social and environmental missions that are making a difference in the lives of millions of our neighbors.

And Now for the Bad News: Does the Future Have a Church?

While the church is enjoying rapid growth in China, a number of African nations, and other countries, this regrettably is not true for many churches in the United States, Canada, Australia, Britain, and other Western nations.  I remember, in the early 1980s, showing leaders of a number of mainline denominations that not only were their denominations begin­ning to gray but their attendance was beginning to decline significantly as well. Now, however, leaders of mainline denomination are not only much more aware of often sharp decline lines but are scrambling to find ways to reverse the decline.

These days I find it is often the leaders of evangelical denominations who are struggling with denial about the potential long-term impact of declining attendance and aging populations in many of their congrega­tions as well. In fact, I hear growing numbers of leaders in these organizations ask the urgently important question, "Does the future have a church?"

To compound this growing crisis, we are losing the under forty at a rate we have never seen before. I am sure that many readers are aware of the Pew Research Report titled "Millennials Increasingly Are Driving the Growth of the 'Nones.'  Some of the major concerns expressed by millennials who have left our churches in­clude a lack of authenticity, a lack of involvement in working for social and environmental change, and the preoccupation with institutional maintenance.

A second group of people increasingly leaving our churches are the "Dones." According to Josh Packard and Ashleigh Hope, authors of Church Refugees, these Christians, who are multigenerational, are leaving churches in the US because, like many millennials, they are looking for ways to invest in working for change in the lives of their neighbors.

A number of mainline churches still sponsor seminars on social justice and environmental stewardship. Many evangelical congregations continue to sponsor an annual missions conference that reflects their global concerns. However, in working with a spectrum of mainline and evangelical churches in North America I have found that although many congregations contribute to the local food bank or rescue mission, they rarely sponsor a single ministry in their own communities that would enable their neighbors or communities to become more self-reliant.

Don't we all need to wake up to the stunning new reality that "busi­ness as usual" will no longer serve? Is it possible that large numbers of churches have settled for simply being chaplains to the dominant culture? Is it possible that they have settled for simply helping nurture us in a fairly private faith while enabling us to limp through our week? Is it pos­sible that we could be missing out on God's best-discovering how God could use our mustard seeds to join those who are creating their best neighborhoods, their best world, and, in the process, their best lives?

Walter Brueggemann, in his recent book Sabbath as Resistance, offers readers a clear alternative to the dominant "culture of now." He argues that the dominant "culture of now" is preoccupied with a driven acquisitiveness, consumerism, and self-involved lifestyles. He reminds us that Jesus calls us away from mammon, "the culture of now," to a new Sabbath way of being by redefining what is important, what is of value, so that we have time for both devotion to God and care for our neighbors. Brueggemann states, "Sabbath is an arena in which we learn to recognize that we live by gift and not by possession . . ."

Is This Book for You?

If you're not content to simply make a living, keeping your nose above water, and you feel that endlessly pursuing more will never be enough, this book is for you. If you're a person of faith who's no longer satisfied with a status-quo Christianity that has little impact on the lives of those outside the tent, this book is for you. If you're looking for a faith that calls you beyond yourself, this book is for you. If you're a young person who has left the church or is looking for a reason to stay, this book is for you. If you're searching for a more authentic whole-life faith and creative ways God can use your mustard seeds, in concert with others, to be a differ­ence and to make a difference, this book is also for you.

 

 

 

 

 

LIVE LIKE YOU GIVE A DAMN!
Join the Changemaking Celebration

Tom Sine

Foreword by Walter Brueggemann

 

Live Like You Give a Damn! declares the very good news that God is raising up a new generation, largely outside the church, to bring impressive change to the lives of our neighbors locally and globally by creating innovative forms of social enterprise and community empowerment.

The even better news is that those of us within the church can join this changemaking celebration and discover creative new ways God can use our mustard seeds to make a more remarkable difference than we ever imagined possible.

This book is rich with examples of the millennial generation leading a new movement of social change through social entrepreneurship and local community empowerment.  It invites the reader to join this changemaking celebration by not only creating new ways to make a difference but also new ways to more fully live into the way of Jesus and be the church that engages some of tomorrow's new challenges as we race into the 2020s.

 

 

Endorsements

"I am glad to commend this exposition that exhibits quite concretely ways to revision, reimagine, and reperform the gospel. Such fresh, imaginative engagement will surely yield a 'well done' from the Lord of the church who makes all things new."

-Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary

"For too long, Christians have used our faith as a ticket into heaven, and ignored the world around us.  We've promised people life after death, while many folks are asking if there's life before death.  At times we've been so heavenly-minded that we haven't been much help here on earth. Tom Sine's new book invites you to see another version of Christianity -- and it is all about bringing heaven to earth. Let this book inspire you to do something with your life that leaves off the fragrance of Jesus and moves the world closer to God's dream for it."  

-Shane Claiborne, author of The Irresistible Revolution and Executing Grace & member of the Simple Way

"Tom Sine has been engaged in the struggle for social justice for many years. In Live Like You Give a Damn! he lifts up the new generation of activists and social entrepreneurs who are taking the baton from his generation and doing wonderful, necessary, and world-changing work in all over the globe. The justice challenges of our time demand an unprecedented response from Christians and all those of faith and conscience, and the witness of millennial activists in response to this challenge fills me with the same hope for a better future that Tom articulates so well in this book." 

-Jim Wallis, New York Times bestselling author of America's Original Sin: Racism, White Privilege, and the Bridge to a New America, president of Sojourners, and editor-in-chief of Sojourners magazine

"Tom Sine's new book is a great introduction to his life-long message of making change and seizing opportunities. It's as fresh and inspiring in 2016 as The Mustard Seed Conspiracy was in 1981."

-Brian McLaren, author/speaker/activist

"An enlightened look at how Millennials are shaping the future for the better, and an invitation to join with him in joining them."

-Romanita Harriston, Vice President, World Vision

"At a time when the church is falling short in bringing Good News to those who need it most, Sine observes that there is a blossoming movement among Millennial entrepreneurs to facilitate social change and community renewal. I encourage church leaders of all stripes to read the stories of changemakers in Sine's book and ask themselves how they can foster this kind of energy and social transformation in their own congregations and communities."  

-Sarah Withrow King, Deputy Director, Evangelicals for Social Action at the Sider Center of Eastern University

"Tom Sine has written a compelling book filled with stories and portraits of hope at a time filled with cynicism, hatred and negativity. Instead of focusing on the evil in the world, he introduces us to people and places where love, justice and an audacity to try what others are afraid to imagine become the catalyst for changemaking for the benefit of others. Inspiring and challenging!"  

-Noel Castellanos, CEO & President, Christian Community Development Association

"This imaginative and prophetic invitation to envision a church that exists for the sake of others is an urgent call for pastors, students, and practitioners who are tired of status quo Christianity. Sine captures the creative and entrepreneurial spirit of millennials and everyday people who are committed to a mustard seed kingdom and an experience of "the good life" that is not captive to comfort, self-interest, and fear."  

-David Leong, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Missiology, Seattle Pacific University and Seminary

"Tom Sine's incisive curiosity about how the greater good can be realized in our time is contagious. This book, his most hopeful and personal, is a real gift to the church and emerging generations. For the sake of the poor, the planet and the future of our neighborhoods and cities, let's join Tom and live like we give a damn."   

-Mark Scandrette, founder of Reimagine, author of FREE: Spending Your Time and Money on What Matters Most.

"Above all this is a book about hope and imagination. Tom weaves together ideas, dreams and stories of people and communities who are changing the world one community at a time. And it's infectious. You find yourself wanting to meet with friends over a meal and start sparking ideas talking about what you can do together in your own locale to make a better world."   

-Jonny Baker, Church Mission Society Director of Mission Education, Anglican Church UK

"Futurist Tom Sine gives us a whirlwind tour of changemakers (including many Gen Y & Z's) who are creatively engaging in the opportunities and challenges we face in our collective economic, political, social, and environmental lives. This book will animate your imagination and help you innovatively live into God's future. Read it with your team, reflect together, and find your life by living it for the sake of others!"   

-JR Woodward, National Director, V3 Church Planting Movement, Co-author, The Church as Movement

"Tom Sine takes us on a journey that moves at dizzying speed through time and many places.  In doing so he brings to the surface some of the amazing changemaking that is flowing from the creativity and energy of millennials, and the new possibilities opening up through rapid technological change.  He highlights the power of social enterprise as an arena for the playing out of God's plan for a just and renewed world.  This is an exciting and energizing ride that I am sure will help many people in realizing their own potential in a world of disruption and dazzling change."  

-Tim Costello, Chief Executive, World Vision Australia

 

Author Bio

Tom Sine is joining a new generation of changemakers who are creating new ways to make a difference and be a difference. Tom and his wife Christine live in an intergenerational community in Seattle. He works with individuals, churches and Christian organizations to enable them to create new ways to be more a part of this new changemaking celebration for times like these. His earlier books include: The New Conspirators, Living on Purpose, Mustard Seed Versus McWorld, Wild Hope and The Mustard Seed Conspiracy. www.msaimagine.org

 

LIVE LIKE YOU GIVE A DAMN!
Join the Changemaking Celebration

Tom Sine

Foreword by Walter Brueggemann

Cascade Books, A Division of Wipf & Stock Publishers

ISBN: 978-1498206259

Pages: 212, Paperback

Publication Date: April 2016

Retail Price: $24.00

To Order visit www.amazon.com, www.wipfandstock.com, local bookstores and other online booksellers.

 

 

 

 


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