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How to Love Your Neighbor Without Being…
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How to Love Your Neighbor Without Being Weird

by Amy Lively

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I don’t always read nonfiction, but when I do I read it more slowly than fiction. Usually. I finished How To Love Your Neighbor Without Being Weird in less than a day; I practically inhaled it – it’s that good and that easy to read. Amy Lively is my literary kindred spirit. Her writing voice is witty, fast-paced, and peppered with stories and truth that will make you chuckle while also hitting you right in the heart. The “Next Best Steps” sections at the end of each chapter contain thought-provoking questions to consider as you plan what to do with what you’ve learned.

News flash: much as the author (and you) have looked for it – there is no exemption clause to God’s command to love your neighbor as you love yourself. We don’t get excused from obedience if we don’t know our neighbors, if we don’t have time, if our neighbors are scary or rude, or if it’s inconvenient for us to do so. So, if we can’t get out of it, how do we work around all these legitimate excuses and love our neighbors without being weird? In this book, Amy Lively presents “simple, practical ways to get to know your neighbors, using your God-given personality.”

I cannot say enough good things about How To Love Your Neighbor! There are very few pages left in my copy that are not marked with underlining, smiley faces, hearts, stars, and notes of emphatic agreement in the margins. Her insights and stories gleaned from venturing out of her comfort zone into authentic friendships with her neighbors resonated with my own experiences teaching English as a Second Language to adults in my community. In fact, Amy Lively even includes a section on approaching your neighbors who are from other countries/cultures – it’s spot on! I found myself nodding adamantly in agreement as I read this practical list of do’s and don’ts and ways to engage international neighbors in conversation. My husband and I have learned these things the hard way with our incredibly gracious international friends – thankfully, you don’t have to if you buy your own copy of this book. The information is right there and will save you much trouble and awkward situations!

How To Love Your Neighbor is a challenging book – coaxing us out of our comfort zones and asking us to do things most of us just plain aren’t comfortable doing. But, it’s also a freeing book. Amy Lively’s dry humor allows you to chuckle at the realities of the daily Jesus-life and realize you’re not the only woman to be irritated by the Proverbs 31 woman. It releases you to offer hospitality without having a spotless house (“This isn’t an eat-off-the-floor kind of clean; a simple wipe-off-what-someone-just-ate-off-the-floor will do.“) and recognizes (with suggestions!) that introverts aren’t going to reach out to their neighbors in the same way as extroverts.

I give How To Love Your Neighbor Without Being Weird 5 out of 5 stars and a space on my favorites shelf! I am better because I read it – and I pray my neighborhood will be too.

(THANK YOU to Bethany House Publishers for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.)

Read more of my review here: https://readingismysuperpower.wordpress.com/2015/06/07/how-to-love-your-neighbor/ ( )
  MeezCarrie | Aug 31, 2015 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0764217003, Paperback)

"I want to love my neighbor, but I don't know how."

Most of us feel guilty about Christ's command to love our neighbor, but let's be honest--we don't even know most of the people living around us.

How can we love people we don't even know? Besides, doesn't it count as "loving our neighbor" when we send money to missionaries and put out yard signs for our church? Are we supposed to just knock on our neighbors' doors and tell them about Jesus?

"They'll think I'm weird."

How to Love Your Neighbor Without Being Weird helps you overcome fears about getting to know your neighbors and sharing your faith. You'll learn simple, practical ways to get to know your neighbors, using your God-given personality. As you venture out of the comfort of your living room and into the lives of your neighbors, you'll form authentic friendships, create a safer community, and find fulfillment in obeying Christ's #2 command.

Loving your neighbor isn't a random command; it's God's perfect plan.

"A very timely book for a very isolated culture. Amy Lively offers practical help and guidance in the neglected practice of hospitality."--Dr. Dennis Rainey, president, FamilyLife

"This ministry is changing lives. Amy has followed God's leading into an untapped area of people that need Jesus. What a simple idea of reaching out to your neighborhood--the area that God placed you in for His purposes. Amy's ideas and excellent resources have offered a no-excuse zone for this ministry. The Lord said, 'Love me and love your neighbor.' He chose Amy to show us the way. Thank you for this amazing resource!"--Chrissy Dunham, director of women's ministry at Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, Texas

"Amy knows God has given each of us a corner of the world to share the love of Jesus and the hope found in His Word. Her book equips women, spiritually and practically, to answer this call and open their hearts and homes to friends and neighbors."--Wendy Blight, Proverbs 31 Ministries speaker and author

"Amy's brilliant approach to engaging our neighbors is natural, fun, and life-changing! She provides every single thing you will need, including courage. This book and practice is a must for everyone desiring to honor and obey the Lord."--Debbie Stuart, church and leadership development director, Women of Faith

" Amy gives us the keys to really connect with those who live around us--not with an agenda, but with a heart toward real relationships. A must-read for anyone who believes that 'Love thy neighbor' really starts at your front door."--Kathi Lipp, coauthor of The Cure for the Perfect Life and author of The Husband Project

"With hundreds of friends on social media, why are we so lonely? In her amazing book, Amy Lively identifies the heart-need for deep connection that's not being met through a screen and offers a simple solution: Actually meet the people who live near you. Amy's openness to share her successes and failures at reaching out will inspire you to try it yourself.'"--Glynnis Whitwer, author of Everyday Confetti; executive director of communications, Proverbs 31 Ministries

"Amy shows us, step-by-step, how to conquer our fears, connect with our neighbors, and have fun too! Highly recommend!"--Cindy Bultema, speaker, Bible teacher, and author of Red Hot Faith

"What does 'love your neighbor as yourself' really mean? In this book, Amy Lively will give you the tips, tools, and techniques you need to love your neighbor in your own unique way."--Jennifer Rothschild, author of Lessons I Learned in the Dark; founder of Fresh Grounded Faith events and womensministry.net

(retrieved from Amazon Tue, 04 Aug 2015 07:26:48 -0400)

"I want to love my neighbor, but I don't know how." Most of us feel guilty about Christ's command to love our neighbor, but let's be honest - we don't even know most of the people living around us. How can we love people we don't even know? Besides, doesn't it count as "loving our neighbor" when we send money to missionaries and put out yard signs for our church? Are we supposed to just knock on our neighbors' doors and tell them about Jesus? "They'll think I'm weird." How to Love Your Neighbor Without Being Weird helps you overcome fears about getting to know your neighbors and sharing your faith. You'll learn simple, practical ways to get to know your neighbors, using your God-given personality. As you venture out of the comfort of your living room and into the lives of your neighbors, you'll form authentic friendships, create a safer community, and find fulfillment in obeying Christ's #2 command. Loving your neighbor isn't a random command; it's God's perfect plan.… (more)

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