I'd heard great things about Mark Scandrette's book, Soul Graffiti, and I've been wanting to read it ever since we shared some tasty Thai food together last year. But I'd been feeling pretty OD-ed on books about new forms of church, so it took awhile to get to it. But I'm glad I finally got around to reading it because it's not so much about what the church should be as it is about the kind of people we can be as we intentionally put ourselves in the pathway of needs. Mark is one of those gifted people who naturally connects with people who don't share his beliefs and has a beautiful way of making the divine both understandable and compelling. I don't do that so naturally, but I'd like to, and a book like this sure helps. Here are just a handful of thoughts I highlighted from his book that might encourage you to go grab a copy of the book for yourself and give it a good read:
3: "No matter our aesthetics, there is something in the motivation of the graffiti artist that we can identify with, a guttural yelp to be heard and understood, to talk back to the universe or to God when we feel helpless, abandoned, or overwhelmed. It may be that impulse we feel to find our place of significance in the wider world, or to initiate conversation with our Make."
80: Some would say that atheists have the most courage--because of the terrorizing implication that life is without meaning or purpose"
128: "Dwelling is about connecting your words, symbols, and expressions with the ongoing conversation of meaning in your culture."
144: "We live in a fragmented world where we all yearn for wholeness."
161: "The message of Jesus is that shalom is now possible...there is a new way to be human."
172: "Who can we love a God we don't see? By loving the people we can see."
200: "Our culture allows us to claim belief without validating faith by actions."
214: "Jesus unapologetically invited people to abandon their pursuit of pleasure or wealth in order to seek the reign of love."
219: "Entering the kingdom of God is a lot like doing the Hokey Pokey on roller skates."
230: "The place to start is with your next step."