Along the dusty roads of our village in East Africa, most families try to survive on less than $1 a day. Buckets of water traveled to the well and back on the heads of robust women. Vegetables were dug up from a garden. From their fields they find wood for fuel to cook. As subsistence farmers they work to eat.
Anytime people require something beyond their daily sustenance, a significant strain lands like the thud of a falling jackfruit.
Every year there are school fees to pay and uniforms to find. If a family member becomes unwell, there’s a cost for medications or a bus ride to the hospital. Illness was the main reason neighbors would arrive at my door, since I was a nurse and we had a vehicle.
The needs surrounding us were great and overwhelming at times.
We resolved to be faithful with the needs we were presented with, to do our best teaching better farming techniques, proper handwashing and basic management of symptoms. Though the help we provided felt miniscule, we trusted the Lord to do all that we could not.
In Amy DiMarcangelo’s new book, Go and Do Likewise, she responds to Christ’s call of showing mercy and provides us with the challenge and encouragement to dig deep in applying this to our life.
Go and Do Likewise by Amy DiMarcangelo | Book Review
Purpose of the Book
This book is written to teach us how to help when we’re overwhelmed with all the needs in this world. It’s to guide us to live meaningfully on mission in the mundane. And, it’s to remind us of our calling to a redemptive work in the world through mission.
Table of Contents
CHAPTER 1 God’s Story Shapes Our Perspective
CHAPTER 2 Who Is My Neighbor?
CHAPTER 3 Imitators of God
CHAPTER 4 Orphans and Widows and Sojourners and . . .
CHAPTER 5 The Power of Words
CHAPTER 6 The Mission of Money
CHAPTER 7 Our Homes Are a Base for Mercy
CHAPTER 8 Where Do We Go from Here?
The first three chapters give us a foundation of understanding to see God’s redemptive work in the world and our calling to imitate him in acts of service. The next 5 chapters explore the different ways we give of our time, finances and efforts to bless and encourage people around us.
You’ll find discussion questions at the close of each chapter which really prompt you to consider how to practically apply these truths to your life and identify what holds you back.
I think you’ll also find the Appendix at the end helpful, as she provides a list of areas and questions to consider when it comes to discerning which organizations to support.
On Sacrificial Care
The call to follow Jesus in a life of mercy and mission doesn’t have to look the same as one in a developing nation.
Love and mercy require sacrifice. In the truest sense, there’s no way we can love and serve others without it costing something of ourselves, no matter where we are.
I think about how our mud home became a place of refuge for those looking for help . Prayers were raised to Christ and he provided answers. Trips to the hospital turned into gospel conversations.
Since returning to Canada, working at the hospital has just meant serving others in a new location. Working particularly now with those struggling with their mental health, there’s much wisdom and discernment I need to help guide others—I carry their burden with them for a short time, in an expression of love and care.
Our time, money and prayers can be a gift to those around us. I really appreciate how the author travels across the spectrum of our lives to open our eyes to the possibilities to serve people around us.
If you need encouragement toward living with a missional heart and life, I’d encourage you to pick this one up.
If you notice you’ve been retreating to a life with yourself as the center (and let's be honest, we're all here at times) here’s an opportunity to grow in reaching out to others.
This is 5 stars from me!
# of Pages: 192
Level of Difficulty: Easy
My Rating: 5 stars
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Scriptures About Acts of Mercy
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— (Eph 2:4–5)
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. (Mt 5:7)
Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.(Luk 6:36)
Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner, but blessed is he who is generous to the poor. (Prov 14:21)
And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” (Mt 10:42)
Now there was in Joppa a disciple named Tabitha, which, translated, means Dorcas. She was full of good works and acts of charity. (Acts 9:36)
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