- Hardcover: 336 pages
- Publisher: Zondervan (Sept. 29 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0310337313
- ISBN-13: 978-0310337317
- Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 2.5 x 20.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 522 g
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #241,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Garden City: Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human. Hardcover – Sep 29 2015
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In Garden City John Mark Comer takes the reader on a journey--- from creation to the final heavenly city. But the journey is designed to let each of us see where we are to find ourselves in God’s good plan to partner with us in the redemption of all creation. Smack-dab in the middle of this set of ideas is Comer’s excellent sketch of work, a sketch I find both pastorally mature and an exhortation to each of us to know that all we do has value before God. There is in Garden City an intoxication with the Bible’s biggest and life-changing ideas. (Scot McKnight, Julius R. Mantey Professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary)
There is an awakening happening in the Western church. We are rediscovering that God’s mission includes all of creation, not just church work, and he intends for us to be flourishing people, not just religious disciples. John Mark Comer’s book continues this awakening with accessible insight into forgotten biblical truths about the importance of our identity as women and men created in God’s image, the value of our vocations in the world, and a ravishing vision of the beautiful future we are building with God today. Everyone who reads this book will see themselves, their work, and their world with new eyes. (Skye Jethani, author of With, Futureville, and the With God Daily Devotional (WithGodDaily.com))
His writing is informal and infectious, growing on the reader as the topics get more intimate. (Publisher’s Weekly (review of John Mark Comer’s Loveology))
Does what we do for work --- in an office, factory, and kitchen, or studio--- matter to God? Is “the Lord’s work” relegated to those who receive paychecks from churches and nonprofits? In Garden City, John Mark’s unique knack for distilling lofty academic concepts into pragmatic, reader-friendly prose focuses on the hugely important and often overlooked interconnectedness of faith and vocation. Knowing him like we do, it’s easy to see his profound desire to know and live the way of Jesus, and to pursue work that matters to God’s redemptive plan, poured out on these pages. (The elders of Bridgetown: A Jesus Church)
About the Author
John Mark Comer is pastor for teaching and vision at Bridgetown Church in Portland, Oregon. He holds a Master's degree in Biblical and Theological Studies from Western Seminary and is the author of two previous books: Loveology and Garden City. Comer is married to Tammy and they have two boys, Jude and Moses and a little girl, Sunday.
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The author wrote in a very modern and enjoyable style and the content kept me hungry for more. This book and it's knowledge is very applicable and has already changed the way I want to live my life.
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"And what is Jesus’ example of work deserving of a reward from God himself? A glass of water. A small, insignificant, nonglamourous act of love and service. It’s easy to think that to be great and to get a reward from God, we have to do something high status. We have to change the world. Something Ted-Talk, Nobel-Peace-Prize quality. And hopefully, God will reward that kind of stuff. But Jesus makes it clear that he’ll also reward the stuff nobody knows about. The hard, mundane, thankless work of mothers and mechanics and second-grade teachers and garbage-truck drivers and the woman who does your dry cleaning. Work that doesn’t get much attention or applause"
At least a few of us will find this encouraging!
The chapters on work will bring fresh perspective on whatever it is you do, and will motivate you to do it well for the glory of God--or find something else! Not only will you be challenged in the way you work, but you'll also find yourself appreciating excellence and thinking more about what you purchase and consume. The concept of secular vs. sacred ("Christian" products like music) has been talked about lately, and Comer does a good job addressing this.
Right before this book I read another good book on the importance of structured rest as a lifestyle. Really, the section (just a few chapters) in Garden City addressed this even better.
Keep in mind that this isn't meant to be a deep work of theology, even though it is theological. I appreciated the engaging use of original Hebrew language and Jewish traditional and contemporary teaching. But this book is above all practical and applicable, and can help you deal with your perspective on God, work, family, and life as a whole foundationally. There's no reason to read this if you're not willing to change.
I didn't agree with every little point Comer makes. But I don't have to in order to see the overall greatness of this message, and its importance to me and those I know. As I've been reading it, I keep thinking of people that I know and love that I'd like to give copies to. Not to change their thinking, but to give clear utterance and direction to what I know they are already feeling.
So yes, not only would I recommend this to a friend (or the girl who cuts my hair, or the guys at the local coffee shop), I'd buy it for them!
John Mark Comer makes very good points on that what we do, does matter to God. On how our job matters to God regardless if it is within the church or not. By us enjoying what we do, we can also project God and making the invisible God visible to others.
I believe the book can be very encouraging to both who are still trying to figure out what to do with life and those who are trying to figure out how to balance things out.
Not only does he touch on the purpose of life but also the need of rest. I needed this section more than the section of purpose. I have known what I have been created to do since I was thirteen and have pursued a career in the field. But my constant struggle has been balancing my rest with work and being human.
I love how he described the Sabbath and shared his own "ritual" routine of his Sabbath every week. This gave good insight, not necessarily on what it should look like. But how I should feel like throughout the week when I make the effort to practice the Sabbath. Many times among this accelerated society I need constant reminders to enjoy my Sabbath, to respect it, and have the intimacy with God on the day of rest.
"Sabbath isn't just a Pause button - it's a full, complete, total system restart." -John Mark Comer
I have always enjoyed John Mark Comer's style of writing. He stimulates me to think. I learn how biblical aspects relate to my daily living. Most important to me, I grow as a Christian.
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. See more at Belovedgems.org