* When an out-of-state college offered Weary a basketball scholarship, he jumped at the chance. But when he left bigoted Mendenhall, Mississippi, he discovered he couldn't outrun racism. This powerful story of his return to his hometown shows how God can heal a place where the railroad tracks divide economic classes---and the church. 192 pages, softcover from Kregel.
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Customer Reviews for Crossing the Tracks: Hope for the Hopeless and Help for the Poor in Rural Mississippi and Your Community
Review 1 for Crossing the Tracks: Hope for the Hopeless and Help for the Poor in Rural Mississippi and Your Community
Excellent for cross cultural ministry insights
Date:March 28, 2013
What tracks do you have in your community? In your relationships? In your life? Tracks represent a dividing line. A grass is greener and browner mentality. Dolphus Weary has crossed the tracks in many ways. His book shares his story of offering hope and help as well as sharing the understanding he has gained as he has crossed various tracks. It is a story that begins with the rural poor of Mississippi and extends to your community. Readers who care about people or situations which need hope will appreciate this book. Pick up the book to look for answers to these types of questions. How does asking questions and listening bring people together? What is the sin of silence and why break it? How can home life impact and expand ministry? What can vision and perseverance along with faith in the Lord accomplish? As a young man, Dolphus understood hopelessness. Hopelessness comes from living in situations where is seems change is impossible. He grew up in the poverty and racism of rural Mississippi and was determined to leave and never go back. But he did go back, as his first book, I Ain’t Comin’ Back, records. God enabled Dolphus to cross three significant tracks in the foundational years of his life. John Perkins, himself an example of courage in making a difference in Mississippi, was instrumental in helping a teenage Dolphus cross out of sin to God’s salvation. Then, while attending a Christian college in California in 1968, Dolphus faced racial prejudice when Martin Luther King, Jr. was killed. God changed his heart with compassion so he could make a difference through building understanding across racial divides. The next track he crossed was his own opposition to returning to Mississippi. Dolphus’s journey has taken him across many more tracks, the most important being dividing lines in people’s minds and hearts. In our own journeys, we all face sin, pain, rejection, and face decisions about how we will respond to these challenges in life. Dolphus’s story challenges us: will we give up hope or give of ourselves out of compassion? The reader observes the development of a life and three expanding ministries. We learn not to despise the day of small beginnings in Medenhall, Mississippi where Dolphus began a small after school program which grew. The reader discovers how Dolphus’s second ministry, Mission Mississippi, impacts a whole state. Currently, the third program, R.E.A.L., Rural Education and Leadership, is coming alongside other ministries to lend a helping hand in Mississippi. Dolphus Weary’s personal journey took him from the poverty of hopelessness to a rich spirit of compassion which brought about these ministries. It took him through personal loss in his own family. His willingness to care, step out, persevere and make a difference permeates the book. Dolphus helps others cross barriers of poverty but also of racial reconciliation. His passion and compassion drive him to encourage understanding. These have taken him into the doors and pulpits of churches where a black man never entered before. These have taken him to speaking engagements across the country as well as lead him to the writing of this book. He shares the overcoming power of compassion as he brings people together for reconciliation. His example encourages our own involvement in the communities where we live. Readers will notice that Dolphus mentions politics, but only in a way that promotes understanding. They will also notice his passion; it is that passion that invites readers to contribute to these ministries that are making a difference. Readers can listen and consider crossing racial lines through compassion, or take it one step further to economic, community, personality, or family lines of division. The book leads us to ask: How many Christians do you know who don’t look like you? Or act just like you? How can you seek God and deliberately change that?