I’ll be honest, I approached this book with a bit of an attitude. Having worked with World Vision since 1998, I have read a lot about previous WV presidents, and heard many people sing the praises of these fine leaders. I’m not really one who is enamored by people and their positions, and I expected this book to be a big Rich Stearns promo…my assumptions were completely misplaced.
Rich writes in a very conversational and accessible style. The transparency in telling his story is powerful. I was particularly taken with the way he honestly admits where he has missed it, and how he’s doubted God at times. I was deeply impacted by the way God brought him to take his position with World Vision, and the character of a man to give up so much material and positional success to serve the poor.
Beyond a discussion of the statistics and great need in our world, I feel that Rich uncovers some truths in how the Christian church is missing part of our missional and faith mandate to share the whole gospel of Jesus. The challenge to give more than just money, but to invest our time and our talents in serving the poor, the widow and the orphan is clear. And the reasons to do so are far deeper than feeling guilty because we have more than people living in poverty; our motivations should be fueled by a passion and obedience to our calling as followers of Jesus.
I would strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in discovering more about the huge needs in our world brought on by poverty and disease. It will also prompt Christians to consider where our priorities lie, and just how passionate we are about living out the whole gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Preach the Gospel always. Use words if necessary.” – St. Francis of Assisi
It’s 1998 and Richard Stearns’ heart is breaking as he sits in a mud hut and listens to the story of an orphaned child in Rakai, Uganda. His journey to this place took more than a long flight from the United States to Africa. It took answering God’s call on his life, a call that hurtled him out of his presidential corner office at Lenox-America’s finest tableware company-to this humble corner of Uganda.
This is a story of how a corporate 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. Using his own journey as an example, Stearns explores the hole that exists in our understanding of the Gospel.
Two thousand years ago, twelve people changed the world. Stearns believes it can happen again.