Neighbors and Wise Men: Sacred Encounters in a Portland Pub and Other Unexpected Places
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Number of Pages: 224
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2012
|Dimensions: 8.38 X 5.50 (inches)|
Availability: In Stock
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Neighbors and Wise Men introduces captivating dialogues and unexpected moments with God that go beyond the confines of a conventional religious system and offer the chance for powerful life transformation.
Get to know Tony Kriz (known by many as "Tony the Beat Poet" in Donald Miller's best-selling book Blue Like Jazz) through his real-life conversations and experiences that prove that God can and will use anyone and anything from Muslim lands to antireligious academics to post-Christian culturesto make Himself known.
Through his own prodigal-son backstory and return to faith, Tony presents biblical truth in a conversational, but bold light that offers readers the courage to open their eyes to the unlikely encounters that are all around us every day; chance run-ins that turn out to be anything but chance.
Have we limited God's ability to speak in our world today? Have we relegated God's creative voice to the select persons who share our particular religious system? Kriz himself felt like he was falling out of faith until non-Christians encouraged him to "fall toward Christ."
Tony "The Beat Poet" Kriz has an earned doctorate in spiritual formation. He is a teacher of faith and culture through the mass media, via social media, and at universities, conferences, churches, seminars, and other speaking engagements. He pastors an imbedded community of life-servants in one of Portland's most culturally diverse neighborhoods. Tony and his wife Aimee have three sons.
JennGAge: 25-34Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5It's all about what you learnDecember 8, 2012JennGAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4First of all, let me say that I tend to be more of a sci-fi/fantasy/dystopian novel kind of girl. If I want spiritual growth (which I do) I read my Bible. But I decided to give this book a go anyway.
The book is about the spiritual journey of a man who is discovering what it means to have faith and follow Jesus, and how those revelations can come from very unexpected places. From Albanian Muslims to super liberal college students in Portland, Oregon, he documents the ways that God has spoken to him through people who would seem to be against everything he believes in.
His style of writing is charismatic and draws you in--I read the whole book in two days. It's not sappy or full of "Christianese" which I really appreciated. His experiences (if not his reactions) were things I could personally relate to. I have lived as a missionary, been to Bible college, and been to secular college, and I know what it is to feel super righteous and also like I've lost touch with all I'm supposed to believe in. Reading about his journey made me laugh out loud and cry and feel the need to meet the author so I could give him a good fist bump.
The only reason I can't give this five stars is because I do have a problem with the idea that a Christian can expect to learn about God through unbelievers. While I believe that all of life is a lesson that the Lord patiently teaches us, and that He can use anyone or anything to teach us, the Bible is the authority on who God is and what He desires of us--not the world.
But as I said, it is a beautifully written, approachable book. There were so many things in it that struck a chord with me and caused me to evaluate my love for others. For that reason alone I will say that I loved this book. I don't love the sort of mushy emergent downplaying of the word of God, but I love the honesty of his journey and the fact that he doesn't claim to have it all together yet.
gcw1York, PAAge: Over 65Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Neighbors and Wise menDecember 4, 2012gcw1York, PAAge: Over 65Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4NEIGHBORS AND WISE MEN - Sacred encounters in a Portland Pub and Other Unexpected Places by Tony Kriz __. This is a book about how we can learn from others, neighbors, people from other countries, religions and just anyone we happen to meet in our daily life. Tony Kriz tells of encounters that he had in his years of being a missionary in Albania. When he first went there he had to deal with their culture. He also had a problem of disbelief in his life. We all can relate to his stories and his struggles, we all have been up against many of the same things. He shows that we may thing we are going to be the teacher, but that sometimes we are the one being taught. The book is 24 chapters, each chapter has about 9 - 12 pages, this makes this book very easy to read.
William Paul Young (The author of The Shack) writes in his forward:
"Every human being is a story. This book is simple, because it is story. This book is profound and challenging, because it is story."
I found Tony's stories interesting and well written. I also found that I can learn from those I come in contact with.
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÂ®.com <http://BookSneezeÂ®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I
DUCKgirlAge: 25-34Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5October 25, 2012DUCKgirlAge: 25-34Gender: femaleNeighbors and Wise Men: Sacred Encounters in a Portland Pub and Other Unexpected Places
By Tony Kriz
God can work through ANY person to make himself known.
There is an ancient prayer that begs God to "Be in the heart of each to whom I speak, be in the mouth of each who speaks unto me."
Have we limited God's ability to speak in our world today? Have we relegated God's creative voice to the select persons who share our particular religious system?
One of the most often stated issues with Christianity is its unsatisfying answer to the question about those "outside" the faith. We have all known people who are kinder than most Christians, purer than most Christians, seemingly more connected to God than most Christians and spiritually wise.
Tony Kriz, who infamously appeared in Donald Miller's books under the name "Tony the Beat Poet" has discovered the abiding presence of Jesus in the lives and words of people from diverse (and often radically unchristian) sources.
Through the pages of this book, Tony guides the reader through Muslim lands, radically anti-religious academia and post-Christian cultures to discover a God who speaks with generosity and creativity.
Kriz himself felt like he was falling out of faith until the most unexpected people were the ones who encouraged him to "Fall toward Christ."
So this isn't a "heavy" book and is one that could be picked up and put down numerous times, but nonetheless I think that it has some rich stories in it and with those stories, some great questions to wrestle with. Overall I think this is a pretty good book. A light read with some great nuggets of wisdom.
I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. 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 Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
MX in GRMIAge: 25-34Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5Life in the grey â€“ and the epiphany next doorSeptember 5, 2012MX in GRMIAge: 25-34Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I think Tony's great gift is his transparent storytelling and the use of his story's brokenness to establish to his readers that only when we are found and find ourselves safe in Jesus will we be able to let go of fear and have peace enough to listen to another (which is the doorway to actually loving them). Tony's "rediscovery" of something like true faith was rooted in God's fathering him, and it's what made space for the reality of the idea that God can speak anywhere he wants. I will forever need to return to those roots, b/c when I'm closed off to any/everyone b/c I'm under stress, or "too busy", I stop listening. This book compellingly and persistently reminds me to listen to my life, to let loose my rigid paradigms (even those under a fearful, 'religious' guise), and not to run myself into the ground grasping after God, b/c if I stop long enough to look into the eyes of my neighbors, of all sorts, I'll find that God is there, and has been all along.
Josh B5 Stars Out Of 5I Highly Recommend This Book!August 31, 2012Josh BQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I loved this book! It's well-written, refreshing and will expand where you look for Jesus in the world around you. Tony shares life-changing stories of Jesus encountering him through those outside the Christian faith: Muslims and atheists, addicts and nudists. The stories are powerful, personal and will make you hungry: hungry to hear God speaking in unexpected places through people who've been written off.
A unique thing I loved is Tony's ability to make others, rather than himself, the hero in his stories. If the classic saying is, "The victors write the history books," meaning those who write history tend to depict themselves as enlightened noble heroes and the "outsiders" as unvirtuous folks fumbling through the dark, then Tony inverts this truism: he lets us into his times of weakness, areas where he has stumbled in the dark, and lifts up the "outsiders" as those God has used to minister and speak to him in that place.
One of the biggest takeaways of this book is it can inspire you to be more attentive to God's voice speaking in the unexpected places in your own life, to listen more closely to the neighbors and wise men God has surrounded you with.