August 10, 2016 was an exciting day for us.
Bless Like Jesus: Stop Trying to Convert and Simply Show People They Matter, the book we wrote and published exclusively on Kindle in January, is now available for purchase in paperback! So, for all of you who have told us you want a physical book to hold in your hand, now is your chance.
AND, that is not the most exciting thing that happened. There is a reason it took us 7 months to release the paperback version of the book. We have been hard at work putting together something else for you, and it’s finally ready.
But first, here is an excerpt from Bless Like Jesus, to give you a better idea of why we wrote it. Below that, you will see some more information about the other resources we have put together to help you implement the ideas and practices in the book.
Hey, Christian. We have a problem.
Well, we have a lot of problems, but let’s focus on them one at a time for now. Did you know we have a pretty poor reputation in our culture? Christians used to be known for their willingness to help people but, sadly, that’s not really the case anymore.
Do you know what Christians are known for today? We’re not talking about what Christians think of other Christians. We’re talking about those outside of Christianity. What do they think of when they hear the word Christian? You might be surprised to hear that generosity and compassion aren’t the first things that come to mind. Or maybe you aren’t surprised. That probably depends on how much you actually interact with non-Christians.
Actually, when most people think of Christians, they typically assume we are judgmental, hypocritical, and more interested in ourselves than in helping others. Hugh Halter does a great job describing how we all contribute to this perception in his book Brimstone: The Art and Act of Holy Nonjudgment. Check out the free preview of Hugh’s book on Amazon to see how easily we feed the stereotype.
When we first moved into our current neighborhood, word got out that we were starting a new church. Later, we found this worried our new neighbors. They expected us to fit their preconceived perception of Christians. They expected an uptight, holier-than-thou family that would force Christianity into every conversation and relentlessly try to convince them to go to church. They told us about their worries a few months later, while we shared a bottle of wine by the fire pit in our front yard. And they were clearly very happy they were wrong.
So, here’s the problem. Abraham, the father of the Hebrew people, was told his people would be a blessing to the world (Genesis 12). And, Jesus, the foundation of our faith, was a blessing in so many ways they can’t be counted. Yet, whether or not we think our actions are a blessing to those around us . . . the world doesn’t. Maybe it’s because they don’t recognize a blessing when they see it. Or, maybe it’s because we’ve misunderstood what it means to be a blessing. Either way, we have some work to do. We can’t be a light to a dark world if people aren’t blessed by our presence.
When was the last time you saw a need in someone’s life and made taking care of that need your top priority? Maybe it was this morning or last week. Or, maybe you can’t even remember the last time you selflessly helped someone else. But try really hard to focus on the last time that happened. Go ahead . . . we can wait.
What if blessing people was such an integral part of your everyday life that you’d have trouble deciding which recent event to choose when answering this question? What kind of impact could you make in your community if you were constantly blessing people throughout your daily routine? It would be huge, right? So, how do we do that?
What we need is something we can incorporate into every aspect of our lives. No matter how busy we are and no matter how many people we interact with in a given day. The ideas and examples in Bless Like Jesus: Stop Trying to Convert and Simply Show People They Matter are designed to do just that. Every interaction you have is a chance to change the way a person views Christianity. Every person you see could be someone God wants you to bless.
It’s amazing to see the difference in how people respond when you make the changes we recommend in Bless Like Jesus. They’ll start to see that you really do care about their wellbeing. You won’t have any trouble getting past the typical stigma we’ve been talking about. You know, the one that says all Christians care about is getting people to go to their church and stop sinning. And not necessarily in that order. We aren’t saying those are bad things. But your friends and neighbors want to know they’re important, even if they never show up in a church building.
Don’t be the kind of Christian the world expects. The world expects you to care more about a church building and your Christian friends than you do about them. Show them they’re wrong. Be the kind of Christian that recognizes a need for change and makes it happen. Be the kind of Christian that makes people ask, “Why do they do the things they do?” But make them ask in a good way! A way that draws them in, instead of pushing them away like too many people do in the name of Christ and Christianity.
The Bible tells us we need to be ready to give an answer for the hope we have (1 Peter 3). But, nobody’s going to ask about our hope if the things we do don’t stand out. You want to represent Jesus well, right? This is about far more than just getting people to like you. It’s about repairing the reputation of Christianity so people can see Jesus for who he really is.
In Bless Like Jesus, we are going to open your eyes to all the opportunities you have to bless people around you every day. We’re going to show you some simple steps you can walk through every day that will ensure people around you think of you as a blessing. If you stick with us, we are going to help you see the people around you in a whole new way that is guaranteed to separate you from the negative stereotype. People will see Jesus in you, and they’re going to want more of him.
So, are you ready? Are you ready to start blessing people around you every day?
Then grab a digital copy of Bless Like Jesus and start reading it right now. Or order a paperback copy if you prefer. Then, click the button below to sign up for a free email series we put together to help guide you through each step in the book. The emails contain encouragement, checklists, and additional things you can do to make the most of your time reading Bless Like Jesus.
Still want more?
We also put together a couple more in-depth resources for you to choose from, depending on how serious you are. These options include lifetime access to a private Facebook group, templates to help you overcome excuses as you follow each step in the book, Discussion Guides for you to use in your small group, and even an option to get personal coaching from us!!!
Click the button below for more information about all of these products, and let's work together to leave people better than they were.