Passionate, deftly, Dahlstrom urges us to embrace our calling as artisans of hope. This is the soothing voice and the relevant message that this noisy, weary world needs.
–KAREN SPEARS ZACHARIAS, author, Will Jesus Buy Me a Double-Wide? ‘Cause I need More Room for My Plasma TV
Richard Dahlstrom brings a welcome call to a biblical faith that takes us beyond ourselves and the polarized debates in our society.
–TOM SINE, author, The New Conspirators: Creating the Future One Mustard Seed at a Time
Dahlstrom reminds us that cynicism and hopelessness are not going to change the world. But neither will nebulous idealism. We have to become people of mercy, justice and love. In short, we have to be “artisans of hope.”
–EUGENE CHO, pastor and founder, One Day’s Wages
Richard Dahlstrom, one of the brightest and best communicators Christianity has to offer right now, calls us out into fulfilling our role as creators–artists sent to splash the world with meaningful gorgeous color.
–JORDAN GREEN, director, Burnside Writers Collective
If you are content and happy with where you are in your journey of faith, and if you prefer that your happy little boat not be rocked, steer clear of this book. For some reason, God has decided to give Richard Dahlstrom a remarkable life, or at least a deeper-than-usual sensitivity to the remarkable aspects of a normal life, characterized by full-frontal confrontations with what the apostle James referred to as “faith without deeds.”
For years, like many of us who have been Christians for most of our lives, Richard was marching along happily in God’s army, about the business of saving sinners, when he discovered the things that seem to matter most to God (judging by the attention they are given in scripture), and how the things God seems to prioritize are often not the same things his followers prioritize, if you consider how we spend our time, money, and words.
Using the analogy of art – specifically, visual art – Richard explores what the Lord wants from his people, according to Micah 6:8 (incidentally, a governing passage in my life). Referring to these as the “primary colors,” he explores what it looks like to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.
With a refreshing sense of his own fallibility coupled with a zeal for sucking every last bit of watermelon off the rind of life, Richard strikes me as a middle-aged man who never quite got the memo that he’s reaching the age where he should start slowing down and letting the next generation pick up the slack. Far from it, as I learned on Easter Sunday. Richard is too busy building wells in Africa, teaching theology classes in India (and many other places), and challenging his flock at Bethany to live remarkable lives for the sake of setting the captives amongst us free.
You can’t read a book like The Colors of Hope and then carry on with business as usual. If you are a Christian, you will put this book down and be filled with a fresh sense of your purpose and calling, relieved by the reminder that our faith is not tame, predictable, or comfortable, but it is good – always good. And if you are not a Christian, reading this book just might encourage you to reconsider the glorious invitation to walk with Jesus.
– CHRISTY TENNANT (excerpted from her blog)