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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Book Reviews: Matthew Barnett's Misfits Welcome

Matthew Barnett is out to change the world, and beginning with Los Angles. Actually, I don't know if he is out to change the world as much as he is just helping change lives in Los Angles. He's wrote several books encouraging others to do the same for people who are more unfortunate and feel like misfits in the church, by helping them feel apart of the Word of God. The message is uplifting, and definitely one that you can't ignore, and with countless testimonials about their life being changed at the Dream Center pastored by a few people including Matthew, what is there not to like?

Summary: After moving to Los Angles, California, to begin pastoring at the hospital his father's hospital he had purchased in the area, Burnett found himself burned out and overwhelmed with the prospect of ministering to the people in an area where some light in the dark was needed. Moving forward though he converted the hospital into not only a church, but a recovery center from those escaping drugs, human trafficking, or people who were homeless families. Many of these people would move from being misfits of society to having crucial roles in the church.

Take a church...
 I think that Matthew Burnett has some great thoughts and insight to bring, and it did get me motivated to wanted to put out more of a servitude attitude. The only thing is I've been reading a lot of books on this matter, and it seems everyone has a different place they are working with, and ministering at and that is great. There was a huge difference in the vibe I got from Burnett than I did from other writers in this same subject though, and it was necessarily that he meant it, but I couldn't help but notice it. I don't think he even intended for this this vibe to be put off.

And a hospital...and voila!
Matthew Barnett admits to his fault. He struggles to want to help people, and he gets depressed when someone he has helped falls back into ways that they were previously practicing. Those are easy to relate to ideas, and I completely agree because those are some of the same obstacles I've felt in just being nicer to people. There is air of something almost inhuman in these struggles though. Everyone else is dealing with hardcore abuses and problems, and he's somehow put himself in these issues as the person directing them to the guiding light. I think it's admirable that he is someone people can rely on, but I wonder does he see them as people? Or misfits? I know they definitely need someone in the church who isn't having their nose held high toward them, but I also wouldn't want someone helping me because they thought I was not just a person, but a misfit...essentially a project.

Now don't get me wrong. I don't think Barnett has done anything wrong, but I can't help but ask questions like that. I think it's great he's reaching out to this community of people, and giving them a church that offers encouragement and support when needed.

"The mark of a Bible-believing Christian is someone who looks for people who feel misplaced in the world." (Misfits Welcome, Matthew Barnett, Chapter 3)

This quote in particular popped out at me, and it seemed fitting particularly with all that is going on in the world right now, especially involving the victimization of many right now. I would love if I could find some of Barnett's views on things like Ferguson or even the women making the allegations regarding Cosby. He seems like he would have much to say and insight that would be intriguing and insightful. He's living this quote in his own life though, and he seems to really be trying to bring the Gospel to life in his own life.

 I think this is a good read, and for many it will provide us focus with where to navigate and begin with helping people. The act of dedicating your life to making other's dreams come true as they do at the Dream Center is truly a feat to be done. I would have many questions to ask the author if given the chance, but the book says a lot about what he is doing.

This book was provided by BookLook Bloggers in exchange for a review.

Pictures are from sxc.hu

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