I originally applied to be on Jen Hatmaker's Launch Team for For the Love (because, of course!) Because, well -- I'm no stalker, but I do love me some Jen Hatmaker. The Team would only consist of 500 people and quickly the thousands (literally) of us who didn't make the team went rogue (at least on Twitter!) and the hashtag #the4500 was created and we became the unofficial backup team.
So when her husband Brandon went to gather a Launch Team for his newest release A Mile Wide he invited us all to play along! With the subtitle of the book being "Trading a Shallow Religion for a Deeper Faith" --well, I know a good trade when I see one!
A Mile Wide: Trading a Shallow Religion for a Deeper Faith by Brandon Hatmaker should be required reading for anyone involved in ministry (which, by the way, is all of us!)
It's so much more than just Kingdom vs. Religion. It's filled with actual how-to's and tips on how to deepen your walk and actually live out your calling! I finished my ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) and immediately ordered two hardbacks... which I am pretty sure I will be giving away and ordering more!
Brandon is the real deal. He is a straight shooter and as much as I
In a world and culture that is constantly preaching how we need to be building a platform and growing a following, Brandon reminds us that the Kingdom is all about fighting for the bottom and lovingly serving and lifting others up. He reminds us that Jesus was never after fans... He wanted followers and He calls us to follow after Him. To follow His lead and to walk in His footsteps.
As I mentioned, as soon as I read the last sentence, we went and ordered a couple of copies of this book --one to give to our lead pastors, and one for my husband and I to read together. The four of us did something super crazy a little over a year ago. We decided that we had waited long enough... searched hard enough... to find a place that we could call home. So we said a risky Yes to God, answering the call to start a new church. Our core values, our beliefs, our vision and goals... Brandon pretty much lays them out in A Mile Wide and it's both confirming and stretching.
This is Kingdom... this is Jesus.
And as much as we can see it and feel it and know it to be true, what I love most about this book is that he gives tips and steps in HOW to do it!
Seriously, you guys... this is super helpful!
This book belongs not only on your shelf... in your church library... and made available for small group studies... but ultimately, it belongs in your heart.
Read it and read it again.
Take notes. Highlight, dog-ear, underline...
Write down the steps Brandon lays out and then go and DO them... and watch His Kingdom come, and His will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven!
Below are some of my favorite quotes but I loved this book so much I wanted to underline and dog-ear ALL the pages!
"His gospel was for all, his community was inclusive, his discipleship was holistic, his mission was eternal, and his kingdom was vast. Everything about Jesus and his dream for us was bigger, wider, and deeper than we can imagine." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
"Living a gospel-centered life is the difference between a constantly yearning faith and a consistently fulfilled faith." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
"...the gospel that saves is the the same gospel that transforms and renews. This is the same gospel that is actively restoring all of creation. It's an active gospel that does not begin and end with salvation. It continues to work, heal, make new, shine light into the darkest places, and bring hope into the most desperate moments." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
"There is no better place for a friend or neighbor to first experience the gospel than in our living rooms or at our dinner tables." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
"We have a lot to learn from Jesus' perspective. He chose the most outcast-iest and the most outsider-ish outsider." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
"Whenever in doubt, may we always return to Jesus. That's the foundation of trading a shallow religion for a deeper faith." ~Brandon Hatmaker, A Mile Wide
I know, right? SO good! Obviously, you need this book! We all need it... we need the truth and grace and freedom that it stirs up in us and we need the push to actually dive deeper and live wider... to leave religion behind and instead, be releasers of His Kingdom!
We all need to remember to:
* I was honored to be a part of Brandon's Book Launch Team for A Mile Wide and the above review is my honest opinion after reading an Advanced Reader Copy.
No Affiliate links were used.
Holly Barrett for #TestimonyTuesday