A Reader Writes: The Book I have Been Waiting for Since 1998

Hey Brian, “Everything Must Change” is the book I have waiting for since 1998 when I first became serious about following Jesus. I kept asking the question “why aren’t Christian communities teaching us to follow the teachings of Jesus?”. Every community I engaged with was fine with worshiping Jesus but when I asked questions about his teachings concerning the Sermon on the Mount, the answers were, “it’s impossible”, “he did not mean it”, “he was just showing us how sinful we are”,…etc. But I could never get on board with those answers, so I have felt like an outsider in my own community(s) Methodist, Catholic, baptist, Presbyterian, Non-Denominational. See I’ve personally encountered the Love of God through Jesus and I don’t recognize the Jesus taught in popular culture or mainstream denomination’s, they all find ways to dismiss the Gospel teachings, Paul and [other parts of the Bible] seem to dominate the conversations and the pastors seem more popular that Jesus (it really disconcerting). My hunger for more teachings on Jesus led me to Richard Rohr, Rob Bell, John Pavlovitz and now you Sir. I think your book is brilliant, I have almost highlighted the entire book. It is prophetic: you call out the “powers that be”, structural and individual and then you counter the dominant narrative with the teachings of Jesus – the Jesus I recognize, the Jesus I encountered in 1998, the Jesus I have been following all these years, the Jesus who told us to build our life foundation on his teachings. Thank you.

It took me awhile to finish the book because I would have to stop and re-read certain points- and say to myself “he’s right, why don’t more people get this”. You connected a lot of dots for me, you put word to what I knew but could not articulate. After the first reading, I was perplexed as to why this book is not standard reading for all Christians, but then I realized that messages that shake up the status quo and hold up a mirror for a society blinded by power, prosperity and possessions will never be popular. I prophet is never popular in his/her own culture.

Again I just want to say thank you for letting Jesus use you like that. You book is a gift, a light in the world, salt to the earth.

Thanks for these encouraging words! It’s hard to believe that Everything Must Change came out over 16 years ago …

My next book will be a kind of sequel to Everything Must Change. It will be out in May of 2024, and is called Life After Doom: Coming Together When Worlds Fall Apart. You’ll find information here: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250893277/life-after-doom