- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Baker Books; First Thus edition (August 1, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780801014598
- ISBN-13: 978-0801014598
- ASIN: 080101459X
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 195 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,484 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door Paperback – August 1, 2012
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From the Back Cover
What if Jesus meant that we should love our actual neighbors?
When Jesus was asked to sum up everything into one command, he said to love God with everything we have and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Most of us have turned this simple idea of loving our neighbors into a nice saying, putting it on bumper stickers and refrigerator magnets and then going on with our lives without actually putting it into practice.
What would happen if every follower of Jesus took the Great Commandment literally? Is it possible that the solution to our society's biggest issues has been right under our noses for the past two thousand years?
"Building relationships with our neighbors leads to better communities, better cities, and ultimately . . . a better world. I encourage you to read this book and to step outside your front door and start making a difference."--Ken Blanchard, coauthor of The One Minute Manager and Lead Like Jesus
"Our church spent a month studying and applying the principles found in The Art of Neighboring. It's simple yet powerful. I love this book and the impact it's had on our church."--John Ortberg, senior pastor of Menlo Park Presbyterian Church
"At the end of the day, community transformation is all about strategic neighboring. The Art of Neighboring is a great book and a useful tool that will help you engage your neighborhood in a meaningful way."--Bob Lupton, author of Toxic Charity
"The Art of Neighboring is a tool that is helping government and faith-based leaders work together to serve their communities."--Reggie McNeal, missional leadership specialist for Leadership Network
"Jay and Dave hold readers accountable to live out the Great Commandment in literal and creative ways. The Art of Neighboring is a unique and necessary addition to any serious Christian's missional library."--Ed Stetzer, author of The Subversive Kingdom
"Thought-provoking yet practical. The truths in the book have the potential to transform not only your life but also your entire community."--Margaret Feinberg, author of Scouting the Divine and The Sacred Echo
"The Art of Neighboring has united many of the churches in Duluth and has helped us to launch a neighboring movement. I'm excited about the influence it is having in my city and its potential to impact other cities around the country."--Don Ness, mayor of Duluth, Minnesota
"The Art of Neighboring is at the forefront of a national movement to renew local communities. This book reminds us all of the value of pursuing relationships with the people who live around us."--John McKnight, co-director of the Asset Based Community Development Institute, Northwestern University
About the Author
Jay Pathak is the senior pastor of the Mile High Vineyard, located in a suburb northwest of Denver, Colorado. Prior to planting this church in 2001, he served at the Columbus Vineyard as a leader in its young-adult ministry, Joshua House, and as an intern to the senior pastor, Rich Nathan. Jay is a graduate of Ohio State University with a BA in philosophy and a graduate of the Vineyard Leadership Institute. He has spoken nationally and internationally for the Vineyard and other groups in both conference and classroom settings. Currently he serves on the National Board of Vineyard USA. Jay and his wife, Danielle, have two daughters.
Dave Runyon helps faith, business, and government leaders work together in the Denver Metro area. He serves as the executive director of CityUnite and as a consultant for companies that have a desire to make a positive impact in their communities (cityunite.org). Previously, Dave served as a pastor for nine years at Foothills Community Church and The Next Level Church. In 2010 he led a neighboring movement that mobilized over 70 churches and 40,000 people in the Denver area. He graduated from Colorado State University, where he studied history and secondary education. He speaks locally and nationally encouraging leaders to collaborate for the good of their cities. Dave and his wife, Lauren, have four kids and do not plan to have any more.
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This book has challenged me to love the people who live closest to me. The Art of Neighboring emerged out of conversations taht several pastors had with a town council. After three hours with the mayor he basically told them that they could have a profound effect on their community if they were better neighbors.
The Art of Neighboring is easy to read, practical, and convicting. Don't get this if you want to continue living life in the same way with your neighbors that you have been for years. Read this and prepare to be a better neighbor.
But we need it. As simple and intuitive Jesus's simple command: "love your neighbor as yourself" seems, there is a huge gap between us agreeing with it and us living it out. That has certainly been the case for us. Of the eight places my wife and I have lived in our sixteen years of marriage, four of those locations we were flat out bad neighbors -- completely absent, and only two of those locations I can say we've been good neighbors.
The Art of the Neighboring is worth its price alone for page 38, which is a simple exercise that reveals how little most of us really know about our neighbors. And if we don't know them, how can we love them?!
My wife and I have been convicted to the call to take seriously our call to neighbor well. This book served as an encouragement of what we've done and prodded me to continue moving forward. This has to be at the heart of what God is calling each of us into as our ministry. If our churches can be places that take our neighborhoods seriously and take seriously Jesus's call to love our neighbor, a tidal shift will hit our churches. I'm praying we can be part of that tidal movement.
The first three chapters of the book are strongest, and if you only have time for those 58 pages, at least read them. This is a book that's not going to bowl you over with its theological depth, but it will give you tools to move the love of God into concrete activity in your neighborhood. And we need a lot more of that.
I gave it four stars because as a book editor, I think it could have been a shorter book and accomplished the same thing. This observation may be due to the fact that I work hard to know my neighbors deeply. However, some of the content could have been edited to a few sentences instead of a few pages.