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Faith Works: Lessons from the Life of an Activist Preacher and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

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Faith Works: How Faith-Based Organizations are Changing Lives, Neighborhoods and America Paperback – Illustrated, September 1, 2001

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Editorial Reviews Review

Jim Wallis is the theological equivalent of a jackalope. He's an evangelical protestant with a strong streak of sympathy for works righteousness. As he explains in Faith Works: Lessons from the Life of an Activist Preacher, "in the Bible, faith is not something you possess but rather something you practice. You have to put it into action or it really doesn't mean anything. Faith changes things. It's the energy of transformation, both for individuals and for a society." For decades, Wallis has channeled the boundless energy of his faith into religious activism. He may be best known as the editor of Sojourners magazine and a founder of Call to Renewal, an evangelical ministry to the poor. Faith Works is a genre-busting book that includes elements of memoir, self-help, sociology, politics, and theology. Each of its 15 chapters conveys a spiritual lesson designed to compel readers to put their faith into action and make a difference in their communities. Here are the first three lessons, which will give you some idea of the respectful, humorous, and demanding tones that sound throughout this book: "Trust your questions," "Get out of the house more often," and "Use your gift." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Wallis has correctly surmised that people long for an alternative to the blame-placing, cynicism-producing and often hate-filled debate between the Left and the Right about social issues. In this engaging and timely collection of sermonlike essays, Wallis, the pastor who founded Sojourners Magazine and the Sojourners community in Washington, D.C., tells story after story of people living out just such an alternative, and in doing so, shows that meaningful activism is possible, palatable, soul-healing and even fun. Arguing that the health of a society can be measured by the way it treats the poor, he chides conservatives and liberals alike for their failures in this area but also affirms their strengths and challenges them to work together toward values both groups share, such as child welfare. Wallis validates the most sensible ideas of liberals and conservatives, in the church and in politics. While he never shies away from harsh truths about the widening wage gap in the U.S., devastating poverty in the developing world and our wealth-obsessed culture's apathetic response, Wallis ultimately inspires as much hope as he does outrage. Hope, in fact, is a theme in this book, which sets it apart from the angry bulk of anti-poverty literature. Wallis sees this hope as a gift from God; he believes that one must have a spiritual well to drink from in order to maintain hope. His book is a welcome primer for any aspiring activist, regardless of spiritual inclination. (Mar.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 355 pages
  • Publisher: PageMill Press; Reprint edition (September 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1879290235
  • ISBN-13: 978-1879290235
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,292,585 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jim Wallis is a bestselling author, public theologian, speaker, preacher, and international commentator on religion, public life, faith, and politics. He is president and CEO of Sojourners, where he is editor-in-chief of Sojourners magazine. He regularly appears on radio and television, including shows like Meet the Press, the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, the O'Reilly Factor, and is a frequent guest on the news programs of CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, Fox, and National Public Radio. He has taught at Harvard's Divinity School and Kennedy School of Government on Faith, Politics, and Society. He has written eight books, including: Faith Works, The Soul of Politics, Who Speaks for God? and The Call to Conversion.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 53 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 4, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I really liked the preview of this book. Jim says many things we have all heard before but says it so well! I too believe we need to look beyond our backdoor or comfort zones and really open our eyes to what's going on around us. By that I mean nationally and internationally. There are many things wrong in this world and unless we as Christians are willing to take up the cross of Jesus in mission and doing for the least of them, things will remain as they are. Mr. Wallis has written a book previously entitled Who Speaks For God? It is excellent and explains the Sojourners magazine he is the editor of. I would encourage all readers to explore his work.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Lurlene Lumkin on October 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
Jim Wallis is a brilliant and compassionate man who preaches his faith like nobody else. He is level-headed and not at all inflammatory, which is beautiful and so rare these days. I am not a particularly religious person, so when he speaks of 'faith' I think of it as 'faith' in humanity and the substitution works just fine. This book is for people who are done hating and being angry about the current state of our country (no matter your political persuasion) and who are truly looking for some way to help bring about change. For someone to have that strong a reaction against a man like Jim Wallis is, who unlike everyone these days has no hidden political agenda, is very bizarre. He is a TRUE Christian (yes, some still exist) and his priority is practicing and teaching the lessons of Christ, which don't include starting wars, sentencing people to death, degrading the poor, quieting dissenting voices, etc. FYI, those who read that last sentence as a poltiical statement rather than an honest recitation of the teachings of Christ are not ready for Jim Wallis's message (like, I suspect, the man who gave this one star).
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7 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Charles Stand on January 21, 2005
Format: Paperback
Gee, we have to have "Faith Based" organizations to change lives and neighborhoods across America. What a load of BS. From the day this country was formed there were people taking care of people whether faith was involved or not. Walls just loves to get preachy on the platform of righteousness. People who care about others are religious or not. They just have a basic need to get outside of EGO and place the welfare of others equal to their own. To place Religion doctrine (which is NOT necessarily "Christian") before the feeding of the hungry is as anti-Christian as it gets.
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