GOD'S REVOLUTION

—————– God's people doing Kingdom justice in community ——————

Paul Coughlin: Help for bullying victims — and even their bullies

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In this episode, we’re discussing the thorny problem of bullying, a serious injustice that drives both the teen suicide and school shooting epidemics.

We’re talking with Paul Coughlin, founder and president of The Protectors, a faith-based organization that provides comprehensive solutions to help families and communities combat the only form of abuse that its victims are told to “just ignore.”

As a one-time victim of bullying himself, Paul offers penetrating insights that overturn our misunderstandings about how to help both the victims and the perpetrators of serial bullying.

Learn more about Paul Coughlin’s great work through The Protectors by clicking here.

Russell & Megan Marshall: Radical obedience to God’s call

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In this episode, we’re talking with Russell and Megan Marshall, a young couple who heard God’s call to leave good jobs and a comfortable house in the suburbs to develop redemptive relationships with residents of an ethnically and economically diverse apartment complex in a transitional area of their city. Russell and Megan walk us through the challenges and blessings they have encountered as they have done what all believers are called to do: Listen to God’s call an
d follow him in obedience to love our neighbors and make disciples of Jesus wherever we live, work, and play.

Learn more about Dwell apartment ministry by clicking here.

Here are Amazon links to two helpful books mentioned in the episode:
Family on Mission
Saturate: Being Disciples of Jesus in the Everyday Stuff of Life

 

Brad Brisco: Misunderstanding church, God, and mission

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In this episode, we’re talking with Brad Brisco about a couple of the biggest barriers that keep Western Christians and churches from effectively sharing the good news of God’s kingdom. Brad, who is a longtime church-planting catalyst, breaks down our misunderstandings of what the Church is — and even of who God is — and explains how we can begin to equip and activate all the people of God to engage in God’s mission right where he has sent us to live, work, and play.

You can find Brad’s Missional Church Network blog by clicking here. His Twitter feed is @bradleybrisco.

Learn more about Brad’s perspective on crucial paradigm shifts churches need to make in this free e-book from the North American Mission Board:
ReThink: 9 Paradigm Shifts for Activating the Church

Here are Amazon links to the books mentioned as helpful resources:
Next Door as It Is in Heaven: : Living Out God’s Kingdom in Your Neighborhood
Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition
The Abundant Community: Awakening the Power of Families and Neighborhoods
The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door
Surprise the World: The Five Habits of Highly Missional People

Sarah Koeppen & Emily Virkler: Rescuing abandoned infants

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In this episode, we’re talking with Sarah Koeppen and Emily Virkler, who lead a marvelous ministry called The Hope Box that is tackling head-on the desperate need in Georgia of infants who have been abandoned, abused, and neglected — including the increasingly horrific problem of sex trafficking babies. Sarah and Emily have a wonderful story to share about the way God is working among his people to wrap their arms around these precious children and help them grow up to become happy, healthy, productive citizens of his kingdom.

Learn more about The Hope Box by clicking here.

Tina Williford: The Table on Delk & sex trafficking rescue

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The Table on Delk offers friendship, resources, and hope for women, children, and even men oppressed by sex trafficking in NW Metro Atlanta. Ministry leader Tina Williford explains how God moved her — a stay-at-home mom with no special training — into a restoration ministry that gives trafficked people an opportunity to experience God’s transforming power and to take hold of the new lives he has prepared for them to live.

Learn more about The Table on Delk by clicking here.
Explore The Atlanta Dream Center’s “Out of Darkness” ministry and other outreaches by clicking here.

Lori Parker & Jay Watts: The aggressive push for infanticide

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In this episode, we’re talking with two people who can help us make sense out of the insane pro-abortion laws and comments that have been in the news recently. Many good people are confused about exactly what is happening and why. Many are wondering how state lawmakers can get away with legalizing infanticide — and what’s behind their enthusiasm.

Lori Parker of First Care Women’s Clinic in Marietta, Ga., and Jay Watts of Merely Human Ministries will crack open the mystery surrounding this sudden surge of aggression against the unborn, and they also will suggest practical ways you can join God’s grassroots revolution to rescue the most vulnerable members of our society from the enemy who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy.

Contact Lori Parker about helping crisis pregnancy centers with their crucial work by clicking here.
Contact Jay Watts about speaking to your group by clicking here.

Antoine Williams: R. Kelly, sexual assault, and #truejustice

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Scandalous new allegations about R&B superstar R. Kelly regarding 25 years of abuse and statutory rape have exploded again recently in a six-part Lifetime docu-series entitled Surviving R. Kelly. Through an attorney, the embattled singer has denied the allegations against him.

Our podcast guest is Antoine Williams, an elder at Atlanta’s Blueprint Church, who is a husband and father, as well as a fine-art photographer. Antoine offers some fascinating insights about why some members of the black community protect known abusers, as well as how God’s people can take steps to break the cycle of abuse and start multiplying justice in their communities.

You can meet Antoine via Instagram here. We held our conversation with him at New Creation Arts, a non-profit gallery and studio space designed to serve local artists in Marietta, Georgia.

If you have a heart for issues of Kingdom justice, please visit our sister site, multiplyjustice.net, which is a clearinghouse for information about a wide range of justice issues, as well as various types of resources and contact information for trusted partners who can help you “do justice” in whatever arena God is calling you to serve.

The God’s Revolution podcast is a production of the Multiply Justice Network.

Reggie McNeal: What hinders the Kingdom?

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Reggie McNealThis discussion with Reggie McNeal, missional leadership specialist for Leadership Network and author of numerous books on church leadership, focuses on perhaps the most fundamental issue facing the church today: How the need to promote our church organization actually keeps us from advancing God’s kingdom in our communities.

Our consumer-oriented society demands services, and churches respond by providing an ever-widening range of programs. Those programs, of course, require church members to provide ever more human resources to support them.

Church leaders find themselves under pressure to constantly innovate programs and recruit church members to staff them. And church members wind up getting the idea that the measure of faithfulness is their level of their participation in the organization’s activities.

If you compound this with a gospel message focused primarily on the afterlife — perhaps even a disavowal that the quality of this life has anything to do with salvation — you have a very serious problem. Even lost people understand that Jesus helped people in need and that his true followers do that too.

We try to mobilize church members to witness to people about eternity, but we don’t help them understand how to be salt in a society that is decaying around them. God’s people don’t understand their role in “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”

If we aren’t trying to help people live abundant lives now, why would we be surprised when they discount our message about eternal life hereafter? Why would we be surprised when people lose interest in our organization’s activities? Why would we be surprised when even our members drift away?

God’s Revolution is about a world in captivity — and the Creator’s mission to set us free and bring us full circle back to the peace he created us to enjoy. An essential part of that revolution is showing people how to live life the way God designed us to live. If we are to be part of God’s revolution in this world, God’s people must do God’s justice in their communities.

Related links

See more about Reggie McNeal’s book, Kingdom Come: Why We Must Give Up Our Obsession with Fixing the Church–and What We Should Do Instead

Visit Reggie McNeal’s website.

Visit the Leadership Network website.

Alan Cross: Cultural racism and Southern evangelicals

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Alan CrossOur world is full of ethnic and racial tensions that seem to intensify constantly. The sad fact is that most Christians seem to be as susceptible to these tensions as their unregenerate neighbors. Alan Cross’ book, “When Heaven and Earth Collide,” explores how cultural racism took Southern evangelicalism captive. In the process, he helps us all consider how our own attitudes about race and ethnicity are shaped by our culture in ways we don’t even realize.

If God’s people are going to do Kingdom justice in community, we must come to terms with the attitudes in our own hearts that get in the way of reconciliation and Gospel advance.

In this episode, we talk with Alan Cross, who founded an organization in Montgomery, Ala., called Community Development Initiatives in 2007 and served as a pastor of Gateway Baptist Church in Montgomery for more than 15 years.

You can follow Alan at his blog, alancrosswrites.com. Learn more about Community Development Initiatives at cdionline.org. You can find out more about “When Heaven and Earth Collide” at amazon.com.

 

Jim Gash: A ‘divine collision’ and juvenile justice

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To read Jim and Henry’s story, A Tool in God’s Hands, click here.

Henry with Jim Gash at the Ihungu Remand Home in Masindi, Uganda.

Henry with Jim Gash at the Ihungu Remand Home in Masindi, Uganda.

What most Americans know of the criminal justice system is what they see on TV dramas: a crime is committed, police investigate and gather evidence against a suspect, who then is arrested and brought immediately before a judge, who schedules the “speedy” trial we all are guaranteed by the US Constitution.

We don’t realize how unusual our system is in the larger world. In many places, you can be arrested and thrown into prison while police investigate and gather evidence and decide whether to even charge you. That can take months, even years, because the law doesn’t require those authorities to move quickly.

If you are innocent of a crime, you still may spend many months in jail. And if you’re a teenager, the interruption to your education could easily ruin the rest of your life.

In this episode of God’s Revolution, we talk with Jim Gash, an American lawyer who was headed for a “divine collision” with Henry, a teenager unjustly held in a Ugandan prison. Gash not only helped get that young man out of jail but he also helped change Uganda’s entire legal system to help keep injustices like that from happening in the future.

The subtext of the story is that God can use ordinary Christians – all of us – to accomplish far more than we can even imagine, if we just let him write the story of our lives, instead of always trying to write it ourselves.

Jim Gash is dean of the Pepperdine University School of Law. Learn more about the book he wrote about his “divine collision” with Henry by clicking here.

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