Watch and Share
Nov04

Watch and Share

This is a grassroots project off the beaten path. Spread the word. Special thanks to “DQ” for your creative energy and humble heart. Shot and Directed // Daniel Kwon Voice Over // Nate Ledbetter Song // “My Thoughts” by KI: Theory Edited // Daniel Kwon...

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About the Book
Nov03

About the Book

More than half the world now lives in towns and cities, which is the largest wave of urban growth in history. This unprecedented growth of urban centers poses perhaps the single greatest frontier for the church in the twenty-first century. How do we know if we are fulfilling our mission? What are we actually attempting to accomplish? What is at stake? Thriving City Blocks is an interactive journal—a call-to-thoughtfulaction among followers of Jesus and people of all stripes, to better understand how to love our neighbors well. Get The Paperback Here Download the Kindle Version...

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Book Excerpt
Nov02

Book Excerpt

I am a neighborhood I am a neighborhood. You might know me as a place, which I am, but I am so much more. I am community. I am beautiful. I am made up of children, seniors, families, and singles. I welcome anyone, and I desire God’s peace and wholeness for everyone to enjoy. I am urban and rural, suburban and sub-urban, and at the heart of life everywhere. You can call me a village or refer to me as in town or across town or uptown. Whatever you call me and wherever you find me, you will notice that many of my characteristics are consistent and true. I am local. I thrive on smallness, like a radius of four blocks, a one- mile stretch, or five hundred homes. I usually have a name and sometimes I need a name because names are significant, lending to the identity and dignity of a people. Since economics drive much of what I can offer, I need healthy entrepreneurship, multi-use spaces, local retail, and sustainable business to recycle the dollar in ways that benefit me and you and the city of which we’re a part. I have a story to tell. My history, whether rich or recent, informs my development, my tension, and my order. I know that my memory and culture tell my as yet unfinished story, inviting my neighbors to live and forgive as God intends. My healthy homes and buildings seek to conserve energy, water and other natural resources. And my architecture, old and new, reveals my creativity and commitment, my honor, and my forward thinking. I am led by neighbors. My leadership is shared and diverse among civic and law, teacher and librarian, parent and neighbor, student and partner. My leaders live here with me, generating action from the ground up. My energy is as vibrant as my attitude, understanding that the psychology of my collective self-talk can either perpetuate my challenges or overcome long-term hurdles. I am connected. My decisions and choices impact other neighborhoods, too. Actually, in the midst of my own brokenness, I realize how inter-connected I am to the story, history, and empowerment of neighborhoods unlike me. Sometimes I appear to be self-sufficient, glittering on the outside, even boastful and proud, while deep down I know real loneliness, pain and empty achievement. Only in humility do I realize my need to learn from other neighborhoods. Only in relationship do I let go of my fear and pride, realizing that the least of other neighborhoods is my greatest teacher. I am dynamic. Wherever you find me, I am changing. In the city, I can be found in small pockets...

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About the Author
Nov01

About the Author

Nate Ledbetter served as a Local Outreach and Regional Pastor for six years at Mars Hill Bible Church in West Michigan before relocating to Atlanta, Georgia, to join FCS Urban Ministries, where he served as a co-executive director. He is passionate to apply the love of neighbor in every context, including urban development, vocational neighboring, and practical theology. He and his wife, Melissa, and their four children now reside in the Austin neighborhood of West Side Chicago, where Nate serves as pastor of Church on the Block, linked with Chicago First Church of the Nazarene. Nate is a member of the national board of directors of the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA) and is a certified trainer of CCDA. He holds an MA from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary and is a CQ-certified facilitator via the Cultural Intelligence Center. He could eat guacamole and chips everyday of his life, and is available to speak to a group in your context. https://www.facebook.com/nateledbetter...

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