Summer is a big reading time for me. One of the best and most impactful books I've read this summer is Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America by Chris Arnade. Highly recommended.
Arnade's book is part travel memoir, part street reporting, part photo journalism. What it all adds up to is a tour through American poverty, urban and rural, white, black, and Hispanic. Dignity is a raw and empathetic look at what Arnade calls "back row America."
For me, there were two stand out chapters.
"If You Want to Understand the Country, Visit McDonalds" will give you wholly new eyes for the fast food chain, the frequent punching bag of elites. I say: God bless McDonalds! Read the chapter to find out why.
Article - Arnade - McDonald - Glue - Holds
An article Arnade wrote in 2016--"McDonald's: You Can Sneer, But It's the Glue that Holds Communities Together"--was a preview of his chapter in Dignity. See also Adam Chandler's recent essay in The Atlantic, "What McDonald’s Does Right."
Basically, for missional impact in local communities, I'd pick McDonalds over most churches.
Look - Power - Street - Churches - Ours
If you want a look inside the power of street churches like ours at Freedom Fellowship, read the chapter "God Filled My Emptiness" in Dignity. For years, when people have asked me about how to deal with faith problems, my...
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