Sunday, December 16, 2007

A Faith That Bleeds

"The state of emergency lies within the church--it lies within us. It's our problem. We can't leave Africa's children lying by the side of the road as we pass on by."--Tom Davis

The Red letters: Living A Faith That Bleeds by Tom Davis is great little book that lays the foundation of how to live out the teachings of Jesus in the context of today's culture, in light of our own generation's struggles, tests of faith, circumstances, and moral dilemmas. Davis briefly, but compellingly depicts the current state of affairs within the world and the myriad of practical, yet revolutionary ways the church could respond: focusing primarily on the world's poor and the AIDS pandemic in Africa.

Davis begins with an apology on behalf of the church's shamefully slow response to the AIDS pandemic and ends with a hopeful, redemptive blue-print for how the church can rise to be the hands and feet of Jesus to our suffering world. Davis' mixture of harsh statistical facts and retelling of real-life people's heart-wrenching stories breathe life into Jesus' call to care for the least, the lost, and the last of this world, as found in those controversial red-letters. The overwhelming rate of disease, extreme poverty, starvation, malnutrition, and the spread of AIDS both inform and rouse righteous anger over the injustice befallen God's beloved people. Hopefully, it spurs the kind of moral outrage that transcends vocal condemnation and leads to compassionate action.

The Red Letters provides a vast wealth of information on dozens of organizations that everyday people can easily get involved with, support, and work along side. Plus, just by purchasing the book, you feed an orphan for an entire month! The proceeds are donated to compassion international to provide the needs of an orphan. This quick read jump starts our vision for the church to rise above rigid institutionalism, and become transformed into the radical, revolutionary living organism that Jesus calls it to be.

"Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence only encourages the tormentor, never the tormented."--Elie Wiesel


benjamin said...

I really like Tom Davis. His writing style is so simple, but makes the complex issues of poverty and AIDS so easy to understand. This is a good book.

tilly hester said...

So far, every recommendation you have made, I loved. So many good books, so little time! Keep me informed on all the fascinating things you discover!

jenna said...

That Elie Wiesel quote hits me right in the gut.

musicmommy3 said...


So,dear sister, how does it feel that your readers actually use the info you provide and read it themselves...

Are you feeling the power?

I'm totally kidding.

I KNOW you're not arrogant and on a power high. I'm glad that you are making a difference. Keep writing. Love, Angela :)

Tia Lynn said...

What? Are you kidding? I am DRUNK WITH POWER!!! MOO-HOO-HAHA!!!! :)

Anonymous said...

Tia Lynn. Hey. This is Hannah -- you don't know me, but I saw your blog today and wanted to post a little line. I am Tom Davis's sister in law; I work with him at Children's Hopechest ( Tom saw your blog and wanted me to thank you for speaking out for the orphans and the defenseless. (He is on spring break with his 5 kids right now, or he could write you himself : )
Hey, I would love to hear more about you -- you're a good writer, girl!
With much joy,
hannah chynoweth