Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Book Review: Same Kind of Different as Me

I received a Nook for Mother’s Day last year, and the first book I purchased was Same Kind of Different As Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore. I heard it was a great book and wanted to read it for myself.  Also, I love true stories--they usually inspire me to change in some way and to be more like Jesus. 

Best For: People that want to be reminded that God can do so much more with our lives if and when we surrender to Him completely; people desiring a fresh perspective on homeless people; people wanting to be reminded that we never know the power of our influence; people wanting to know that God sees each person as valuable

        Overview:   The book shares the story of how Deborah and Ron met, fell in love, and were married. It describes how they both gave their lives to Jesus and their marriage struggles. One thing that God showed Deborah was to go help at the Union Gospel Mission in Fort Worth, Texas. When Ron joined her, she encouraged him to build a relationship with Denver, a homeless man that stayed at the mission. He described himself as a "nasty, homeless, in scrapes with the law, in Angola prison, and homeless again for a lotta years..." This is the story of the weaving of their lives and how it brought about an incredible, life changing friendship between these three people.

Few Quotes:

“I Woke Up!” (Denver's response when he was asked why he was so happy.)

It so affected Ron and Deborah that Ron said,

" 'We woke up!' were the first [words] to come out of our mouths, a tiny prayer of thanksgiving for something we'd always taken for granted, but that a derelict had had the wisdom to see as a blessing fundamental to all others."

“Are you sure you own them [things], or does they own you?”
(Denver asked Ron about all the keys on his keychain, wondering if he owned something for every one of the keys). 

“Money can’t buy no blessing.”

“Our limitation is God’s opportunity.”

“People think they’re in control, but they ain’t. The truth is, that which must befall thee must befall thee. And that which must pass thee by must pass thee by.”

My Thoughts:  This book challenged me to my core. Have you ever heard the saying that you can’t judge a book by the cover? It’s true. You can’t do that with people either. You have to get to know a person before you can make any type of assessment or know if they can be someone that will be a friend. 

     As I read the book, it took me back to my days living in Southern California. I lived close to the beach and frequently traveled a path along the ocean bluffs. It was a village of homeless people scattered around with make-shift homes. I admit I rarely took the time to serve the homeless there. Once in high school when I was a part of the Christian club, we made sack lunches for the homeless and handed them out. I think I was more concerned with doing my "good deed" than caring about who they were. I never really thought about their personal stories and how they ended up homeless.

     I realized by reading this book how hard and calloused my heart had become to homeless people or anyone "different" than me. It was a hard lesson to learn about myself. I did compare myself to Ron and Deborah Hall who so willingly stepped out in faith and obeyed God. I asked myself,
 “Would I do that?” 
"Would I so willingly obey God and go serve the homeless at a shelter?" 
The answer was "no". I learned that I had subtly shut myself into a bubble and didn’t want to break out of it. 

Photo source: istockphoto.com

·         I was challenged by how Ron and Deborah Hall lived out their Christianity. Ron said   
        of his wife, "She did have one other fear, though: missing the call of God."
·         I was challenged to step out of my comfort zone and befriend someone different  
        than me (whether with a friendly smile or greeting).
·         I was challenged to try and see people through God’s eyes, and not my own.
·         I was challenged to not jump quickly to conclusions about people.
·         I was challenged to give of myself (time, money, prayer, possessions).
·         I was challenged to live with less "stuff".
·         I was challenged to ask God to use me, even if it was only to reach one person.

 I highly recommend this book and have given it away as a gift because of how deeply it impacted my heart. I don't want to be the same person I was before I read this book. I don't think I will be. My heart has softened. Compassion has grown in my heart. I needed a new perspective, a Godly perspective. I don't want to judge people by their appearances. As Ron Hall stated, "I have learned that even with my $500 European-designer bifocals, I cannot see into a person's heart to know his spiritual condition. All I can do is tell the jagged tale of my own spiritual journey and declare that my life has been the better for having followed Christ." I encourage you to read it. I don’t think you will regret it.


  1. I have all these books to read. Someone just said to read "The pursuit of God" by Towzer. And now I want to read this book you recommended! Thank you for sharing and touching my heart with the LOVE OF JESUS.

    1. I KNOW! There are so many good books to read! This is one of them. I think you'll be blessed by it, Amanda :)

  2. Wow Kathy this is a great review. I will have to read it because you have spoken so highly of it. Lining here does can make a person very calloused, it is so sad. I will defiantly put thin on my to read list!

    1. Thanks, Tesha! You are always so encouraging. Reading this book really exposed my heart. Once I started it, I couldn't put it down!

  3. Okay, first I have to say I like the way you do a book review...I am taking diligent notes and will changing my book review format soon.
    secondly thank you for sharing about this book. I have heard this was a good book, but had never gotten any specifics. I think I'll have to pick this one up for the church library and myself.
    Keep up the God work.

  4. Kathy, I added this book to my wish list after reading your review. Thanks for sharing how it challenged you and for visiting me at Doorkeeper. Blessings!


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