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Unshockable Love: How Jesus Changes the World through Imperfect People Paperback – September 2, 2014
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From the Inside Flap
John Burke is the author of "No Perfect People Allowed" and "Soul Revolution," and the lead pastor of Gateway Church in Austin, Texas, which he and his wife, Kathy, founded in 1998. Since then, Gateway has grown to over 4,500 members, made up mostly of unchurched people who began actively following Christ at Gateway. John is also the founder and president of Gateway Leadership Initiative (formerly Emerging Leadership Initiative), a nonprofit organization working to help church planting pastors and ordinary Christians "raise the church out of the culture" around the world. John has spoken in fifteen countries to over 200,000 church leaders and Christians about reaching a postmodern, post-Christian culture. He and Kathy have been married twenty-three years and currently reside in Austin, Texas, with their two children, Ashley and Justin.
From the Back Cover
Imperfect people are the only ones who change the world
Why were "sinners" so attracted to Jesus yet repelled by the religious? It had everything to do with the heart of Jesus. They sensed that Jesus was for them--not against them. Do the broken people in our lives feel such an attraction to us? Or do we unwittingly repel them by expecting them to clean themselves up a little before we can accept them? In other words, do our hearts reveal the heart of God or subtly reflect the heart of the Pharisees?
Through an engaging study of Jesus' encounters with imperfect people, combined with real-life stories of ordinary people having Christlike impact, this book will inspire you to love the messy people around you--and the one staring back in the mirror--with Christ's unshockable love.
"Beneath the surface of every broken person, there is a work of art waiting to be revealed. This book shows us how."--Mark Batterson, author of The Circle Maker
"I wish all believers loved people who are far from God like John Burke does. Unshockable Love reminds us of our desperate need to join Jesus in the messy work of life-on-life discipleship."--Ed Stetzer, www.edstetzer.com, author of Subversive Kingdom
"John is a man who not only knows Jesus, but knows that Jesus really saves and redeems broken people and makes them trophies of his grace."--Alan Hirsch, author, activist, dreamer, www.alanhirsch.org
John Burke is the author of No Perfect People Allowed and Soul Revolution, and the lead pastor of Gateway Church in Austin, Texas, which he and his wife, Kathy, founded in 1998. Since then, Gateway has grown to over 4,500 members, made up mostly of unchurched people who began actively following Christ at Gateway.
Top customer reviews
In reading all three of Burke's books, it's clear that John's writing style has evolved and is now more polished. I think the premise of his latest book -- that all followers of Christ can easily fall into "holier than thou" Pharisaical thinking -- is right on target and is a huge part of the reasons that non-believers think we're full of crap. It's because we are.
I don't know that there is a lot of new ground here, but John still made me think. He states that people (well, sinners) were so attracted to Jesus because they could tell he cared about them, and that if we truly care about others and seek to learn about them, we'll begin to be more like Jesus than like the religious leaders of his day. Not a huge revelation, but John states it well, and it's still something that every believer should check their attitude against.
There are points during which the editing could be a little tighter; the book feels a little repetitive in nature. This in no way takes anything from the importance of the message, but there were a couple of spots in which I wished Burke would move along to the next topic.
Overall, I find this a worthwhile read for any believer, particularly anyone who wants to authentically share their faith with others. And if you're not a believer, you can read this and call us on our crap.
John's newest book is my favorite of his. I have been a church goer for years, a Christian for less of that time, and reading this book I'm realizing that even my "Christian" years have been tainted with the things skeptics dislike.
For Christ followers, we have hurt and not helped. Mud and the Masterpiece has caught me in my tracks and opened my eyes to see beyond the mud.
If you are a skeptic, please forgive me. Please forgive us. Consider this a fresh look at why we mean well and yet fall into all the stereotypical traps. Give John a chance to plead our case in this remarkable look at how Christians forget that we are unique people who are indeed Masterpieces.
Even though I was unchurched growing up I came to faith through a community of Christ followers in high school. I emerged myself in strong Bible believing and preaching churches for more than a decade. It wasn't until I found the Gateway community that I could see the own "mud" in my eyes about how I viewed people outside of the church. I had an "us" vs. "them" attitude that was much more like a Pharisee. I didn't see people or love people like Jesus did. I only talked like I loved people - I was mainly talk.
John has been helping me love like Jesus loves. I now see the masterpiece under the mud of people's life!
The Mud and the Masterpiece gives practical examples of communities all over the world who are stripping away judgmental religious behaviors and returning to the heart of Jesus! The resulting stories of changed lives inspires me to fully engage in my neighborhood so that everyone has a chance to experience less "religion" and more Jesus!
The second part of the book really is just an extension of the first in many ways, showing how the love ripples spread by Christians outward are a natural multiplying process that occurs. He helps organize that with some great ideas to help keep us intentional as well as functional in the process of building the Kingdom of God, as God keeps filling it up with His Masterpieces. One day the mudroom will be closed and the detailed restoration work will be complete! What a day that will be.
John's books always encourage me, and I can't wait to share them with others. The stories he weaves in along with scriptures from the Bible are living examples that reinforce the truth that Jesus is a lifechanger and life with God is good! I hope he keeps writing!!!