She is my new best friend and I love her.
We have never personally met, or had a conversation or even looked at each other in the eye as we passed in the isle of the Target or Marshall’s store. But I would like to sit down and have a cup of coffee with her because she speaks deeply in to my soul about kids, family, faith, coffee, and what really living out the gospel looks like in the everyday ordinary living of life.
I want to know more about her practical approach to doing life as a ministry family. And she doesn’t intimidate me like some other authors and speakers do… I like her a lot.
Recently I read Jen’s book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess (finally…I had some serious reservations and didn’t want her to get in my business) I was immediately invited into her life and her real messed-up way of looking at life as a woman who seeks to honor the Lord, but gets confused about what that is supposed to look like compared to the American Dream paraded in front of us while we sip OJ and eat our morning cereal everyday.
Because she included the “messy” of her experiment and not a sanitized 10 Steps to Overcome style or approach, I decided she is my kind of friend. One who will say to you, “This is how the Bible teaches us to do/say/speak/act…, but let’s be real… it’s hard and we all get it wrong, but that’s why Grace is amazing.”
Yes… I like Jen for this reason. And because she likes coffee!
You will want to read Interrupted if you have, as I have been, asking questions like:
How to reconcile world poverty and the lavish lifestyles of the not so rich and famous, the everyday ordinary living out the gospel when we seem to have excess and the majority of the world has nothing but Jesus.
They will have nothing if we don’t tell them, show them, give them Jesus. What do you do? Can we go to them? Do we go to them?
And since going and doing the gospel around the world is not an option for most of us, how do we participate and be involved from right where we live? What does that look like?
Jen teaches by example in her book what she and her family have discovered about the ministry. The Gospel begins right in your own neighborhood, backyard, street, city, area where you live. Taking the gospel to the world sometimes means making your purchases for our household differently and thinking about who made our items and at what cost to the lives of others?
“Jesus didn’t have much patience with believers who attempted to limit the scop of “who my neighbor is” to the fewest possible people (see Lune 10:25-37)” ~Jen Hatmaker, Interrupted, p 107
Together Jen and her husband Brandon learn what they thought belonged to them was really God’s and if He said to give something away, then they could trust Him to provide what they needed.
The planting of a church in a neighborhood with a people group that is different than the one you’re used to will become a HUGE Interruption in your life!!! My husband, Mike and I, understand this completely having planted a church in own area with a people group that was hungry to be reached with clear, simple teaching of the Word of God and to see that Loving God means Loving People. The end.
On several occasions, God said to Jen and Brandon “Leave your shoes, give them away.” So they did. They went home barefooted; believed God had a higher purpose than for them to wear their favorite well worn boots they had enjoyed earlier in the day. Guess what? God did prove faithful to them, they are not shoeless and they are happier and blessed knowing that they serve the God of the Universe who takes care of everything so we don’t have to pretend that we do!!!
We have become church people who go to church thinking it is our right and opportunity to attend in order to be “filled” week after week, entertained if possible. Jen and Brandon bring light to that attitude and teach that we are to BE THE CHURCH by simply loving people right where they are and telling them about Jesus.
Please. If you have been a church attender all your life… you really NEED to read Interrupted. Just like I needed to rethink my own love for God and people, you probably do too. Just sayin’. We tend to get too comfortable in our idea and approach to the Gospel lived out and need a sight adjustment from time to time.