As I finished reading the final words of this book, my heart was forever altered. There I was in a crowded local taco joint with a hubbub of excitement and noise all around me, but I felt as if the world stood still. Through the words of Jen Hatmaker, Jesus had touched my heart and opened my eyes to another world - His world.
"God does not change, but He uses change to change us. He sends us on journeys that bring us to the end of ourselves. "
Interrupted is the account of the Hatmaker family transformation where their life gets, well Interrupted. Jesus takes them on a season of life-altering change....from pastoring a large, comfortable church to taking to the streets of Austin and ministering to the homeless. All throughout the journey, I appreciated the rawness of Jen's words. At one point in Interrupted, you get the opportunity to hear from her husband, Brandon. You see, Jesus spoke this into Jen's heart first and there was a season of thoughtful prayer that led them to move together into missional living. Hearing their voices in each subsequent chapter gives a unique perspective to the mingling of souls in a God-ordained marriage.
"A barefoot church."
Leaving her beloved boots behind, Jen takes off into the journey. Her focus, to serve as Jesus served. Luke 22:27 accounts, But I among you as one who serves. The few chapters describing and detailing the Hatmaker's church plant was like watching God's tapestry weave itself. I devoured those chapters quickly waiting impatiently to see what the next page held. I can only image how her family felt living it out - in real time and waiting on God's will.
"I discovered the journey was not only about something new but also about being willing to go, even before we knew where we were going. "
Our lives in Christ are just that - lives. in. Christ. We are created in God's image and called to do His work here on earth. Sometimes as Christians we spend time creating our own opportunities instead of responding to His leading. What would happen if I let God fully lead instead of me taking the lead? Yes, those are words taken directly from my notes as I read through Interrupted in that local taco joint mentioned above. Deep words that resonate with me still.
What did Interrupted mean to me? Oh so much. I want to buy up hundreds of copies of this book and mail it to all my girlfriends and sisters-in-law! While I had followed Jen Hatmaker as Christian author, speaker and blogger, I had never read her books. (I know, I know!) But since finishing Interrupted, I have downloaded and read two more: 7 An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess and The Modern Girl's Guide to Bible Study. Wow - these works are powerful as well. But let it be known, that there would be no 7 if there was never Interrupted.
I've always been a comfortable Christian - happy in my Bible studies and simple relationships. But as Jen writes, "Our lives must reflect this heart of Christ, or we will always remain one click away." How will I reach the unreachable and love who the world says is unlovable? How will my life be more like Christ? What does missional living look like for The Home Team?
I don't have all the answers, but I do have hope that my Jesus will lead me.
Thank you Jen for allowing God to work through your words and impact the hearts of many, but most importantly, thank you for serving our Lord.