The prophet Micah writes “He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8)? The problem, as we have all discovered, is that what the Lord requires is easier said than done—especially when it comes to justice. The challenges are too great. How do we stand with the disenfranchised, feed the hungry and seek equality for the poor? Defeated already, many of us give up and decide to wait until Jesus returns and makes things right. A book that I recently read invites us to walk a different path and effectively “do” justice.
The book is Slow Kingdom Coming, by Kent Annan (Intervarsity Press, Downers Grove, 2016). I can’t say enough good things about this book! It is engaging, insightful, motivational and practical. It has changed the way that I look at justice issues in the world and how I involve myself in social ministries. I know that it will do the same for the congregation that I serve and I suspect that it will cause you to make some adjustments in your life.
I think all of us want to do something to help others. Frequently we drop a few extra dollars in a special offering for hurricane and flood survivors or for school children in Latin America and AIDS victims in Africa. This isn’t very fulfilling and probably only marginally helpful. Many of our congregations plan mission trips to various parts of the world. We work hard and we meet a few people but when we return home we wonder if all the time and money expended as made a lasting difference.
Kent Annon offers his readers five practices to slowly bring in the kingdom of God. The great news is that we don’t need to wait for Jesus to come to change things. Instead we can use our gifts and talents to slowly bring in God’s kingdom into our world. The five practices in this book can help us find the freedom to handle what we can and what we are called to—and then handle this well—as we respond faithfully to needs and opportunities around us. These five practices are not hard and they are deeply entrenched in the Christian tradition.
I don’t want to spoil it for you and tell you any more about the five practices. I can only encourage you to buy the book, read it, ponder it, discuss it and use it as a guide to slowly bring in God’s kingdom.
I received this book free from the author and or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trace Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.