First, let me say, I like the book. He's a good story teller, has wonderful points, and if people took his words to heart the world would change.
But what cracks me up is how people get all fired up like this is the first book ever written on this subject.
Chad and I are so grateful that we were invested in by people who have lived radically for a long time.
David Englehart at New Mexico State University has been used by God to mobilize college students to give their time, money, and lives so that the nations will worship Jesus. He discipled Chad and me while we were in college. For over 20 years, David has kept his hand to the plow and faithfully served God by inspiring students to live radically.
Jeff Lewis spoke at our campus ministry and many conferences throughout our college career. He blew my mind in teaching that God blesses us so that we can be a blessing to the nations. Every time I heard him speak he would say, "I just wish I had more time to get into this." I remember I always thought my brain was going to explode with the information he did have time to share.
A pastor and friend, Tim Johnson, taught me how to love people. Any time the church would gather I would watch him talk to as many people as possible, but Tim has such a love for people that each person he spoke to knew they were loved. People aren't just a number in Tim's church. They are valued. Tim knows how to value people.
In reading Radical I found myself wondering about Second Mile's statistics. Mr. Platt shares wonderful stories of how God is using people in beautiful ways to love people and change the world, stories of many people coming to Christ. As I've continued to read, I've asked God what radical things are happening in my church. Here are a few things that came to mind.
Josie was born at 23 weeks. By all science she shouldn't be here. But she is. She turned four last week. She is a light to all who know her. Her parents proclaim Jesus' miracles in their family to anyone who will listen.
Seven college students went to east Asia this summer to tell fellow college students about Jesus. They raised a lot of money to go. Some gave up jobs. Some dealt with unhappy families because of their choice to go. They saw sweet fruit of their labor, but what is really awesome is how their hearts were changed. The world is a smaller place and God is so much bigger to them now.
Yemi used to live in an orphanage in Ethiopia. Her parents went through hell on earth in the process to bring her home, but they stayed the course. Yemi is a firecracker to say the least. Her mom and dad continue to talk about caring for orphans. God has changed their lives through adoption, and their journey in loving children in distress has just begun.
Three years ago Jen gave her life to Jesus. Just three short years ago. She and her husband have committed themselves to radically follow Jesus, both are being discipled, and will be leading their own community group starting in February. They have decided to radically change their lives and align themselves with whatever God will have them do.
What about you? Have you considered following Jesus? If you already follow Him, how has your way of life changed? Have you contemplated what Jesus meant when he said to take up your cross and follow Him? What does it mean to you when He says whoever wants to save His life will lose it, but He who loses His life will save it? Are there people around you who boldly live for Jesus? In what ways can you encourage them today?
Matt 5:41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.
Luke 14:27 And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.
I John 5:3 This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome.
For further reading on living radically please consider The Barbarian Way or The Unstoppable Force by Erwin McManus.