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Welcome to the new ACF Staff Corner!

Sometimes, you've heard some great teaching either at a large group or a retreat and it not only piqued your interest, it left you wanting more. Since we can't fully explore our topics in less than an hour's worth of teaching time, we created the Staff Corner as a place to highlight the resources used during the teaching session, as well as provide helpful follow-up materials to study the topics in more depth (such as books with links to We hope the Staff Corner will be a blessing to you!

-Your Staff Workers

Click here for the teaching material from The Life: Practical Insights into Christian Living.

Large Group (4/26): Racial Reconciliation as Asian American Christians


  • Emerson, M and Christian Smith (2001) Divided by Faith: Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America. This book is now becoming a standard if you're serious as a Christian about race relations in America. "In recent years, the leaders of the American evangelical movement have brought their characteristic passion to the problem of race, notably in the Promise Keepers movement and in reconciliation theology. But the authors of this provocative new study reveal that despite their good intentions, evangelicals may actually be preserving America's racial chasm.
  • Mott, S (1982). Biblical Ethics and Social Change. This is the book that Soong-Chan suggested for a spectrum of Biblical suggestions for addressing social injustice.

    Large Group (4/19): Asian American and Christian Identity

    Here's my powerpoint presentation for In Search of Identity: An Asian American Christian Perspective. Since this is a controversial topic, please don't mass email my presentation. Please notify me, James, if you want to pass it on to someone else. Thanks!


  • Tatum, B. (1999). Why are all The Black Kids Sitting Together in The Cafeteria? A great book on ethnic minority identity development, particularly for the African American Community. But, it has great insight for identity development for people of color in America.
  • Takaki, R. (1998). Strangers from a Different Shore: A History of Asian Americans. In an extraordinary blend of eloquent narrative history, vivid personal recollection, and oral testimony, Ronald Takaki relates the diverse 150-year history of Asian Americans. Through richly detailed vignettes--by turns bitter, funny, and inspiring--he offers a stunning panorama of a neglected part of Americanhistory.
  • Wu, F. (2001). Yellow: Race in America Beyond Black and White. This book "is an eclectic, incisive investigation-cum-meditation that, though focusing on Asian Americans, recasts the United States' ongoing debate about racial identity in all forms. Wu suggests that the widespread stereotyping of Asian Americans, while "superficially positive," is inherently damaging. Mixing personal anecdotes, current events, academic studies, and court cases, Wu not only debunks the myth of a "model minority" but also makes discomfiting observations about attitudes toward affirmative action, what he calls "rational" discrimination, mixed marriages, racial profiling, and the "false divisions" of integration versus pluralism and assimilation versus multiculturalism. Though its conclusions are unremarkable, Yellow is thought provoking. The book's strength--besides its clarity and thoughtfulness--is a lack of tendentiousness." --
  • Nam, V. (2001). Yell-Oh Girls! Emerging Voices Explore Culture, Identity and Growing Up Asian American. "... the collection includes only 80 brief selections (most are under three pages) by budding writers between 15 and 22 years of age, from all over the country. Nam presents the pieces according to theme with helpful background information and analyses of the works, and ends each section with a 'Mentor Piece' by an established Asian-American writer on her own coming-of-age (these include essays by Lois-Ann Yamanaka and Helen Zia)." -- Publishers Weekly.

    Large Group (4/5): Seeking International Justice

    If you want to know more about the International Justice Mission, check out this website: Feel free to contact the IJM directly by email: Anna Wiebe.

    Here is an interesting book on this topic:

  • Haugen, G (1999). Good News about Injustice. The President of IJM writes an extremely compelling book on addressing injustices in our world. In Good News About Injustice: A Witness of Courage in a Hurting World, Gary Haugen courageously exposes the truth about global injustice. Gripping stories from the mass graves of Rwanda and the brothels of Manila describe the ways that people exploit and destroy other people created in the image of God. Revealing God's heart of compassion for the victims of injustice, Haugen shows how God's people can "seek justice, rescue the oppressed, defend the orphan and plead for the widow."

    Large Group (3/15): A Christian Response to Poverty

    Here are some follow-up websites:

  • World Vision is an international partnership of Christians whose mission is to follow our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in working with the poor and oppressed to promote human transformation, seek justice, and bear witness to the good news of the Kingdom of God.
  • The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible, and its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

    Some helpful books about the Christian response to poverty:

  • Beckman, D. and A. Simon. Grace at the Table. One staffworker told me that this is the book he wanted written about a Christian response to poverty.
  • Sider, R. Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger. One of the classic evangelical treatises on poverty and the Christian response.

    Volunteer opportunities:
    Feel free to contact Alicia Ingalls if you're interested in volunteering at the Salvation Army in Cambridge.

    Large Group (2/22): God's Heart and Missions

    If you are interested in going on missions and need support, email our speaker for this meeting, Jonathan Liu. He would be glad to help you out with prayer, advice, and financing.

    The Advance! Newsletter is an email list with current news from the missions front. Visit here to subscribe.

    Here are some books that you might be interested in:

  • Winter, Hawthorne and Dorr (Eds.) Perspectives on the World Christian Movement: A Reader. This is the textbook for the Persectives in World Missions Course.
  • Johnstone and Mandryk. Operation World. Again, an excellent prayer resource, filled with up-to-date prayer requests for the nations.

    Missionary biographies are an excellent resource. Here are some great ones:

  • Christy, Wilson Jr. More to be Desired than Gold. An excellent anthology of Prof. Wilson's short stories from his time in Afghanistan. It seems particularly timely considering our world's current events. He was my missions professor at Gordon-Conwell, and a great man of prayer. Sorry, but it's out of print. But, you can borrow my copy. Just let me know (
  • Anderson, Courtney. To the Golden Shore: The Life of Adoniram Judson. He was the first American missionary, and this book chronicles his life in Burma. An incredible read.
  • Taylor, Mrs. Howard. Hudson Taylor's Spiritual Secret. Another great biography of a great missionary to China.
  • Elisabeth, Elliot. Thorugh Gates of Splendor. Though I don't agree with many of her stances, particularly about the role of women, she does have an incredible story. Her husband, Jim Elliot, was murdered by the native people whom they were trying to serve. (But, really, I wouldn't advise reading anything else by Elizabeth Elliot.)

    Large Group (2/15): Life After College Panel

    The alums have a great deal of wisdom to pass on, eh? Well, here are some more helpful resources for thinking about life after college:

  • Lamb, Richard. Following Jesus in the "Real World:" Discipleship for the Post-College Years. This is a helpful, practical book to help college students think about what life after college is like, and some ways to prepare for the upcoming transition.
  • Diehl, William. The Monday Connection: On Being an Authentic Christian in a Weekday World. Though probably more helpful once you start working, this is one of the best books out there in providing a practical perspective about being a Christian in the workplace. He can help you think through some practical issues surrounding work in particular.
  • Banks, Robert. Redeeming the Routines: Bringing Theology to Life. This is a helpful book in providing a theological framework for seeing everyday life through the lens of spirituality.

    Large Group (2/8): Investing in the Kingdom

    We learned about how to spend your money and your time in investing in God's purposes in our world. Click here for James Choung's powerpoint presentation.

    Also, for further reading, try:

  • Foster, R. The Celebration of Discipline. One of the few books that I encourage as a must-read for all Christians. It gives practical insights on spiritual disciplines to help us grow in our spirituality. For our purposes, he touches on time and money in our spiritual disciplines.
  • Foster, R. The Challenge of a Disciplined Life: Christian Reflections on Money, Sex and Power. Comes highly recommended.
  • Ortberg, J. The Life You've Always Wanted. A more modern look at spiritual disciplines. A thoughtful yet easy read, with practical insights.
  • Covey, S. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Though not a Christian book, it can provide some helpful and very practical guidelines in managing time and priorities. The philosophies may be suspect, but the tools it provides are golden.

    Winter Retreat 2002: Rediscovering Community

    I hope we had a great time learning more about God's design for the Christian community. Click here for Peter Yang's powerpoint presentation on the Pitfalls of Christian Community.

    If you want to read more on the topic of community, check out:

  • Bonhoeffer, D. Life Together. Comes recommended as some wonderful reflections on Christian community.
  • Long, J. Generating Hope: A Strategy for Reaching Postmodern Generation. Argues for the necessity of "communities of intimacy" to reach out to people of this generation. Some great insight into Generation X and postmodernity, and how it may affect ministry.

    The Life: Practical Insights into Christian Living

    - Decision Making and God's Will - Testimony
    - Making Sense of the Bible - Winter Survival Guide
    - Quiet Times - How Do you Know that you are a Christian?
    - Reconciling with Friends - Rest

    The Discipline of Rest (4/26/02):
    Ortberg, J (1998). The Life You've Always Wanted. "What does a true spiritual life really look like? What keeps you from living such a life? If you suspect that there's more to Christianity than what you've experienced, John Ortberg points to a road of transformation and spiritual vigor anyone can take."

    How Do you Know that you are a Christian? (4/19/02):
    This question has been debated even amongst Christians, as there are as many views out there as there are denominations. Did Jesus want this question to be so tough for us to answer? This week's "Life" presentation looks at a new way of answering this question that differs from most of the other views we probably heard in the past. It focuses on being a student of Jesus. A book source to read in regard to this question is Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard. Click here for the presentation.

    Making Sense of the Bible (4/5/02):
    Click here for James' slides.


  • Fee, G. and D. Stuart (1993). How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth. This volume guides readers in understanding the literary dimensions of the Bible by incorporating techniques for interpreting Scripture, while it also maintains faithfulness to literary genres.

    Forming your Testimony (3/15/02):
    Click here for Grace's presentation on "Telling Your Story: How to Give Your Testimony".

    Useful Links:
    Here's a helpful document on How to Prepare and Share Your Personal Testimony.

    Reconciling with Friends (3/1/02):
    Click here for Peter's powerpoint presentation.


  • Cloud & Townsend. Boundaries. This is a follow-up book to their Changes that Heal, which proposes a helpful development model for emotional/spiritual growth. Boundaries focuses on the 2nd stage of development, teaching Christians to define healthy emotional boundaries to live more Christ-like lives. It can help you in resolving conflicts, helping you to become "responsible to" without being "responsible for".

    Quiet Times (2/22/02):
    Click here for Peter's slides from Large Group about QTs.

    One daily devotional that was extremely helpful for me in high school and college was called The Daily Walk, by the Navigators. It walks you through the entire Bible in a year, with helpful charts and commentary. It costs $18/yr, but you can click here for a free sample copy.


  • Manning, B. The Ragamuffin Gospel. Feeling burnt out and tied down by these disciplines instead of finding experiences that free you to know God more in your life? This is an excellent book that reminded me of why we can do these things and the reason we want to know the God who is at the center of them -- the grace he has shown and continues to show us and the "furious love" our Lord has for each one of us.
  • Foster R. The Celebration of Discipline. One of the few books that I encourage as a must-read for all Christians. It givespractical insights on spiritual disciplines to help us grow in our spirituality.
  • Foster R. Prayer: Finding the Hearts TrueHome. A great book on prayer, giving practical insights and vocabulary to the plethora of different prayers.
  • Ortberg, J. The Life You've Always Wanted. A more modern look at spiritual disciplines. A thoughtful yet easy read, with practical insights.

    Decision Making and God's Will (2/15/02):
    Click here for James' powerpoint presentation on Decision Making and God's Will.
    Also, if you're interested in another source, I found this one particularly helpful in preparing. Click here for the link.

    Winter Survival Guide (12/02):
    Click here for James powerpoint presentation.

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