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Deepening the Soul for Justice (Urbana Onward) Paperback – October 29, 2012


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Deepening the Soul for Justice (Urbana Onward) + The Just Church: Becoming a Risk-Taking, Justice-Seeking, Disciple-Making Congregation + The Locust Effect: Why the End of Poverty Requires the End of Violence
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Product Details

  • Series: Urbana Onward
  • Paperback: 48 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Books (October 29, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 083083463X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830834631
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #186,094 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"I was so compelled by this book! In a time when justice threatens to become merely a movement, rather than a genuine cry of the heart, Bethany reminds us that the exhausting work of bringing freedom to the oppressed begins with devoting ourselves to diligent prayer. This work is impossible and unsustainable without it!" (David Carr, drummer, Third Day)

"Several years ago when I first began learning about human trafficking and modern-day slavery, my one repeated question for my friends at International Justice Mission was, 'What can I do?' With beautiful consistency the reply was, 'Become a person of justice, learn about the God of justice.' They knew from firsthand experience that taking hold of what it means to live justly had to be as important a task as anything they were doing in the field. Here, Bethany Hoang has created a beautiful journey for the heart longing to be shaped by the God of justice. Before our action can be 'wise, effective and sustained,' we must be formed by practices that lead us to the very originator of justice." (Sara Groves, award-winning singer/songwriter)

"The church needs to become people who seek justice--enduringly, persistently, sacrificially, joyfully. Though the arc of history bends toward justice, it is a long arc, and it calls forth depth and character. For the Christian, justice is a call to spiritual maturity. Bethany Hoang nourishes that very thing in this wonderfully encouraging and thoughtful book. What she points us toward is essential for the long and faithful road." (Mark Labberton)

"What a soul seeking justice requires is sustenance from the very God of justice. But this can be hard to accept, and even harder to pursue. That's why I am so glad that Bethany Hoang has offered us a pathway to discipleship, an invitation to grace and a guide to faithful discipline in this indispensable book. I am deeply grateful for her wisdom--I believe you will be, too." (Gary Haugen, president and CEO, International Justice Mission)

"Take a deep breath and relax--and then don't do anything else to seek justice until you've read this book. Bethany Hoang has the message of sustaining peace and the practical steps of discipleship you need to fuel your own justice journey, so you can stay in the fight for the long haul." (Christine Caine, founder, The A21 Campaign)

"Bethany Hoang is a catalyst for our generation and a voice for the voiceless. In this book she challenges us to set aside our own good intentions for justice in favor of God's best for us and his best for the world. This little book is packed with wisdom, hope and practical steps to prepare you for the hard work of justice." (Brad Lomenick, executive director, Catalyst Conferences)

"Bethany Hoang has written an important devotional that connects us deeply and intimately with both God's character and concern for justice. This is a wise and practical reflection to deeply ground us in the great theme of God’s global missionary enterprise on behalf of the voiceless." (Mac Pier, president, The NYC Leadership Center)

"Let's be honest. Trends dominate the contemporary church, but some ideas are too important to succumb to the here-today-gone-tomorrow nature of consumer religion. Justice is one of them. Bethany Hoang recognizes the need to anchor justice to a foundation of theology, Scripture, and communion with God if it is to avoid becoming another disposable trend among Christians. This book is a critical beginning for anyone serious about seeking justice for a lifetime." (Skye Jethani, senior editor of Leadership Journal and author of WITH: Reimagining the Way You Relate to God)

"The wisdom in this book is the difference between a life that burns ever brighter and deeper with a holy flame, and a life that burns out all too quickly from self-fueled striving. Bethany Hoang has put in a few words what many take a lifetime to discover." (Andy Crouch, author of Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling)

"Each and every day we are faced with an issue of injustice in the world around us--both locally and globally. This book has given me a daily guidance on how I can make a difference in fighting injustice through practical steps daily in my life." (Jimmy D. Lee, former executive director, The White House Presidential Initiative for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and co-principal of CreatePossible)

"Bethany has a hopeful and powerful voice in awakening the church to respond to some of the world's greatest injustices. Deepening the Soul for Justice goes straight to the heart of the matter: Christ invites us to address injustices as part of his work in bringing restoration and reconciliation to a broken world. A remarkable book!" (Peter Greer, president and CEO, HOPE International, and author of The Poor Will Be Glad)

"The worship that we want to be known for is worship that weds songs with action. Deepening the Soul for Justice offers clear steps for everyone to pursue a lifestyle of justice. This book is great guide for a generation who wants to be known for ending slavery in their lifetime." (Bryson Vogeltanz, Passion Conferences)

"Bethany Hoang and her colleagues at International Justice Mission hold prayer as a vital aspect in their work among the poor and their daily fight against injustice. If we are to truly do his will in a hurting world, we must first understand the heart of our heavenly Father and his unwavering love for the poor. The best way to do this is through a life of prayer." (Dr. Wess Stafford, president & CEO, Compassion International)

"Rather than allowing the devastation from some of the most desperate and exploited parts of the world overwhelm and overcome her, Bethany Hoang has courageously overcome sorrow, pain and injustice through hope--a hope based and nurtured in a deep spirituality. In this compelling work Bethany offers a fresh take on social justice-related work by grounding it in prayer, affirming the centrality of partnership in all our efforts and locating these important vocational expressions in the incubator of community." (Christopher L. Heuertz, senior strategist, Word Made Flesh, author of Unexpected Gifts and Simple Spirituality)

"The initial flame of justice passion easily burns out. Only a radically God-centered, other-centered commitment yields action that genuinely serves victims of abuse. Justice work requires relentless perseverance and long-term investment. Hoang's guide offers practical, actionable steps disciples need to take in order to last in the Micah 6:8 life." (Dr. Amy L. Sherman, author, Kingdom Calling: Vocational Stewardship for the Common Good)

About the Author

Bethany Hoang (M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary), director of the IJM Institute for Biblical Justice, convenes leaders to catalyze engagement around issues of injustice in the global Christian community. Since joining IJM in 2004, she has traveled globally, speaking and teaching to thousands on behalf of IJM at churches, conferences and universities. She is responsible for equipping leaders of the global church and academic communities with tools and resources for bringing others into a deeper level of understanding, passion and commitment to seeking justice on behalf of those who suffer abuse and oppression in our world.

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Customer Reviews

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Very accessible, easy to read, and well worth re-reading.
Christopher Hull
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has felt the tug to engage in the fight against injustice.
blairpippin
It will also give you hope and encouragement as you seek out the God of freedom and justice for all.
Carrie Ngangnang

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By April McCallum on January 2, 2013
Format: Paperback
In "Deepening the Soul for Justice", author and justice advocate Bethany Hoang poses the question that so many are asking, "What can I possibly do to make a difference?" In the face of daunting statistics on human trafficking, sexual slavery, child abuse, and brutal violence, she underscores how man's inhumanity to man can become "crushing, unbearable, paralyzing... and, envokes utter despair." Yet her words challenge us to move away from despair and with faith, toward hope, which is impossible without drawing near to the heart of God.

Through her experience with IJM--a human rights agency that brings rescue to victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression--the author has seen, heard, and understands the desperate need for human rights intervention on a massive scale. She poses a question that resonates with other justice-warriors, "What does it mean to pray in the face of brutal injustice?" Her insights are clear: we need to see, hear, and know. Many justice-seekers imagine the "frontlines" in fighting against violence and oppression as brothel raids or in courts of justice, yet the author contends the true frontlines are in the place of prayer, a radical shift in thinking for some.

Though the reality is, sorrow over injustice, fervent passion, or even genuine conviction are not enough to secure lasting transformation. Transformational justice can become a reality through partnership with God in prayer coupled with purposed community action. The author challenges readers to selfless discipline and refined intentions in this evocative short book, with true stories of rescue and inspiration from a biblically rooted passion. "When God invites us to act in the face of injustice, God is inviting us to join the work he is already doing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By blairpippin on December 26, 2012
Format: Paperback
In a day when justice issues seem to be the latest craze in Christian circles, Bethany Hoang gives us a book to help lay the correct foundation for perseverance on the long road against oppression. She writes, "While many followers of Jesus are rising up against injustice, this passion risks amounting to nothing more than a fad, a firecracker that explodes with great fanfare but quickly fades out." Found within the pages of Hoang's book is the solution; a foundation for justice rooted in the God of justice. She reminds us, "If we are going to persevere in bringing an end to injustice, we must continually remember the realty of injustice and the overriding realty of our God who loves justice." We do this by getting to know this God more deeply.

In this short book, she gives a few practical ways followers of Christ can join Jesus in bringing restoration to our world and the pathway to keep going. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has felt the tug to engage in the fight against injustice. It provides the depth of heart one needs to stare evil in the eye and continue to fight for others. (Blair Pippin, Florida Abolitionist Mobilization Coordinator, Cru Campus staff)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Martha P. Forrest on February 1, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This short read is transforming my relationship to the God who loves, protects, and is always with us. It has opened the curtain of deep relationship and invited me in.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Russell on May 10, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Practical reflections to incorporate a sense of justice into the dailiness of life. Be encouraged by its simplicity, and enjoy its readability.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Daum on December 31, 2012
Format: Paperback
I found much to like in Hoang's Deepening the Soul for Justice. Her framework of prayer, study of Scripture, sabbath and worship is simple yet helpful. She warns against justice as commodity, reminds that it's often when we least feel like stopping for prayer that we most need to, and elucidates both spiritual and literal slavery as described in Isaiah 58 and Luke 4. She foretells that our actual pursuit of justice will likely not look like what we first imagined, declares justice and worship as both declaring God's lordship, and warns against pursuing justice without regularly examining our own hearts for injustice. Finally, she calls us to publicly remember all the good things God has done, to bear witness to the coming kingdom, for the sake of those who still await justice and for the sake of those who will bring it about. The book ends with a list of questions for reflection which I appreciated for their honesty.

I appreciated the reminder that our God cares deeply about the right ordering of power in the world and the impetus to bring it about is his. We reflect his heart and bear witness to the coming kingdom by participating in that work, but our own pursuit of justice begins with and is sustained by pursuing him, the God of justice. Hoang's book is encouraging me to solidify practices and rhythms in my life that regularly bring me back to the ultimate source of justice in a variety of ways. Thanks Bethany for the important reminders!

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Format: Kindle Edition
This book, though a short one, was bursting with practical wisdom. The author has spent years working with the International Justice Mission, so she has a true understanding of the immense amount of injustice around the world. Because of that understanding, she was able to bring clarity to what it takes for a follower of Christ, for anyone really, to be sustained in their pursuit of fighting injustice. As one who is emotionally and passionately drawn into the plight of the suffering, Hoang offered me practical and proven steps to avoid burning out and being filled with despair when the weight of the oppressed in our world finally settles in. If you plan on pursuing a career or lifestyle in fighting injustice, I recommend you put this book on the top of your list.
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