Kent Annan left behind his comfortable world to face the world beyond its gates, where people wear his cast off clothing and survival is an open question. Apparently that was where God wanted him. Of course, just because God wants you somewhere doesn't mean its going to be easy.In Following Jesus Through the Eye of the Needle follow the story of Kent Annan as he journeys out into the world to discover his calling as he lives among the world's impoverished, and takes Jesus' call seriously.
Kent Annan (MDiv, Princeton Theological Seminary) is a writer, speaker and co-director of Haiti Partners, a nonprofit focused on education in Haiti. He is the author of and and has spent fifteen years working with people in difficult situations around the world, including in Europe with refugees and in Haiti. Kent is on the board of directors of Equitas Group, a philanthropic foundation focused on ending child exploitation in Haiti and Southeast Asia. His writing has appeared in publications including , , , , , , and . One of his essays was cited as a "Notable Essay" in the Best American Essays series and he wrote a chapter for the book . He has been featured on national TV and radio shows. Speaking regularly to groups around the country, Kent also teaches adult education at his local church. He travels to Haiti regularly from Florida, where he lives with his wife Shelly and their two children.
" Following Jesus is a fresh and accessible memoir of hope and discovery. Kent's journey is an invitation for all of us to consider how we might find authentic ways to love faithfully and live humbly. In a world that desperately needs a good God to be embodied, Kent Annan offers himself as an answer to that prayer."
"Annan offers a vivid picture of the Haiti he knows, the good work happening there through organizations like Haiti Partners, and the ways you can get involved. . . You'll get a fresh sense of what it means to love God and to love our neighbor when love makes us uncomfortable, or even takes us to dangerous places, to see what happens when God stretches us beyond our borders and into his kingdom."
"Annan calls us beyond human sin and its consequences to consider the possibility that God is God, that change is possible, that hope is worthwhile, and that individual and corporate action can make a difference."
"Kent Annan is a gifted writer to keep an eye on with a message you can't afford to miss. Highly recommended!"
" Following Jesus Through the Eye of the Needle offers a fresh sense of what it means to love God and love our neighbor when love is uncomfortableeven dangerousand to experience what happens when God stretches on beyond his or her borders into serving God's kingdom."
"This wonderful book is as much about faith and commitment and service and love and love of service as it is about the author and about Haiti. Please read it. You will be uplifted and you will be inspired, but most of all you will enjoy it."
"This is a book that emerges from the tireless struggle familiar to Haiti's slums and to Jesus' Galilee. Kent Annan's story is filled with the hope that there is a God who can set free both the oppressed and the oppressors. After all, Kent is one rich ruler who has entered the kingdom, but he had to learn that you can't drive a BMW across the border."
"It's not often you read a book at once as moving and disturbing as Kent Annan's accounts of the time he has lived among the rural poor of Haiti, where every day tested his fortitude, his marriage and his abundant store of good humor. Yet he doesn't wish to play on our feelings or to point an accusing finger. Rather, he wants to share his fears, his bewilderment, and the everyday glimmers of beauty and joy he finds among his neighbors."
"Kent Annan takes the reader on a ride through the hot spots of both this world and the individual's soul. By turns wrenching and funny, and always honest, his own story puts an unerring finger on that difficult place where a questioning mind and an open heart meet."
"I just read Kent Annan's book. I think he will join the ranks of Don Miller, Lauren Winner and Shane Claiborne as one of our most gifted younger writers. He not only writes with grace and grit, but he has an extraordinary bank of experience to draw on--as someone who has lived among the poorest and in the most dangerous settings. No platitudes, no sentimentality, no euphemisms. Just an honest eye, sharp mind and human heart."
"Lately I've encountered lots of spiritual memoirs that read the way most of those emotionally overwrought singer/songwriters sound: whiney and wiser-than-thou. This one is refreshingly different. It's built around an actual story, with a beginning, middle and end. It's a great story too, told by a likable, honest, regular guy who just happens to really know how to write. By the time you finish it, Kent Annan will be your friend; he'll have learned a lot, and so will you."
"An unpredictable book! As you read this story, words like fascinating, convicting and inspiring will come to mind, but beneath them you will feel the suffering strain--and yes, the glory--of a young couple radically following Jesus into the lives of the obscenely poor people of Haiti."