I have a friend from college who knows Tony the Beat Poet from Donald Miller's Blue Like Jazz. Tony has written a book, Neighbors + Wise Men.
I could relate a lot to what Tony was saying throughout the book because he had to unlearn quite a bit of religion he grew up with in order to relate better to people and reach a healthier state of being.
Tony shares his experiences abroad in Albania, surviving seminary, conversations in Portland pubs, and interacting with students at Reed College.
I started reading this book without a highlighter. Eventually I broke down and started marking up my book because even though he's sharing his stories, there's so many great lessons!
"What if sharing the gospel was... like sharing a sunset?... As you share a sunset, you must stand shoulder to shoulder, not face to face. When you share a sunset, both observers are caught up in the glory and beauty and mystery. When you share a sunset, everyone present has equal opportunity to contribute; anyone can have a thought to share or implication to suggest. It is a remarkably shared experience" (172).
Because of his stories of interacting with people, I want to be a better person. Tony shared so many lessons from who he met, no matter their religious beliefs. He was able to learn from every person he encountered, which is a great way to live life.
Sometimes when I read books I am ready to finish them and the writing gets worse as the book goes on, but this one just became even BETTER! The last few chapters were really challenging.
Tony has a new book coming out soon and I can't wait to read it!
Coming January 2015: ALOOF: Figuring out life with a GOD who HIDES.