Book Review: Do All Lives Matter? by Wayne Gordon & John M. Perkins

This is a book review of Do All Lives Matter? - a book by Waye Gordon and John M. Perkins. Released in 2017 through Baker Books, Do All Lives Matter? explores this question by looking at stories and finding the issues that we can no longer ignore and the solutions we all long for. It is a book of captivating stories and concerns.

This is a book review of Do All Lives Matter? - a book by Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins. Released in 2017 through Baker Books, Do All Lives Matter? explores this question by looking at stories and finding the issues that we can no longer ignore and the solutions we all long for. It is a book of captivating stories and concerns.

With affirming reviews from Shane Claiborne (Author), Noel Castellanos (CCDA), Philip Ryken (Wheaton College) and notable others accomplished leaders, this short book (92 pages) looks to explore what it may take to move from a sense of apathy and unawareness, and towards action and conviction.[1] The belief that all matters is at the heart of our founding documents, and it is one of those matters the witness of the scriptures is “abundantly clear – beyond any reasonable debate…all human beings are equal in the sight of God.”[2] In nine short chapters, these authors explore their experiences, who are the invisible people, and what it means to have a Christian response to our polarized world.

Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins are both renown, compassionate, challenging and influential Christian leaders who have become known for their work in investing in racial reconciliation and justice work in the United States. As a pastor and community leader, Wayne is from Chicago, where he pastors the Lawndale Christian Community Church and helped to formulate the Christian Community Development Association in the 1970s. He has worked tirelessly to address issues of poverty, education, and gang violence in the city's marginalized neighborhoods. Similarly, John M. Perkins is a civil rights activist, minister, and author who played a key role in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. He founded the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation and the Christian Community Development Association and has worked to promote racial reconciliation and community development in urban areas throughout the United States.

Gordon and Perkins suggest that we as followers of Jesus, must live in a way in our neighborhoods, invested, in a way “to proclaim to the world that all lives do indeed matter.”[3] They share that while they “don’t doubt that we’ve come a long way as a church and as a culture…we still have a long way to go.”[4] The truth is that “often when we think of contemporary expressions of racism or sexism we think of obvious things such as unjustified and unnecessary police shootings…But discrimination also has a subtler side. This subtler side reveals its face – often unintentionally – when we don’t notice the people around us. In effect they become invisible, and to the extent that they go unheard and unnoticed, they get the message that their lives don’t matter.”[5] This book calls us to hear and notice. Additionally, the authors offer “eleven suggestions…to demonstrate the conviction that all lives matter.”[6]

1.     Pray and discuss the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi on a regular basis

2.     Seek first to understand, then to be understood.

3.     Build and cultivate relationships across ethnic lines.

4.     Strive to build friendships with people who are different.

5.     Listen to the music of other cultures.

6.     Move into a diverse community.

7.     Allow the right books and movies to inform and inspire you.

8.     Participate in a discussion group.

9.     Support restorative justice policies and efforts.

10.  Consider organizing or joining a peaceful protest.

11.  Work with the police and leaders of your city or community[7]

Though it wasn’t the most exhaustive read on the subject, the stories and points in Do All Lives Matter?, is certainly a captivating and thought-provoking book that offers different perspectives and fresh – but simple - insight on race and justice issues, making it a valuable read for individuals interested in understanding and addressing these topics in a more holistic and informed way.

Buy on Amazon

Read Highlights & Quotes from this book


[1] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), Back Cover.

[2] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 59-60.

[3] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 66.

[4] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 63.

[5] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 45.

[6] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 71-82.

[7] Wayne Gordon and John M. Perkins, Do All Lives Matter? (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2017), 71-82.

Comments

Popular Posts

Book Review: Shattered by Rip Wahlberg

Book Review: Lennon, Dylan, Alice, & Jesus by Greg Laurie and Marshall Terrill

Book Review: How Much Land Does a Man Need by Leo Tolstoy