Living Everyday from Abundance, for Everyone Everywhere, in Our Neighborhood: Recommended Reading

Mather, M. (2018). Having Nothing, Possessing Everything: Finding Abundant Communities in Unexpected Places. Grand Rapids, MI, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

Is living in abundance-based agreements only for the rich and the educated, a luxury? Or is it a way of living available to all human beings who choose to say Yes! to human creativity, to seeing and supporting each other, to a healthy, vibrant community?

In Having Nothing, Possessing Everything, the Rev. Michael Mather describes the experience of his community, at the time in Indianapolis, and how they found the abundance in their community. He describes the individuals who brought this awareness to him. How he said Yes! to their gift, their unique contribution in their way of seeing abundance in the eyes of their neighbors, one at a time. The journey of how the community evolved to embrace more and more of these gifts, in a place many would have described as economically poor, where many would not expect to find abundance in their agreements.

Like the work of other community-based groups who find the strengths, the assets, the gifts residing everywhere in their community, in each human being, in each relationship, in each interaction, they began to learn to see the gifts, and how to say Yes! to them. In the world of complementary currencies, they call this matching unmet needs with underutilized resources. Seeing what is actually there, in great wealth, and where it could express. This book is full of practical examples of how they saw who wanted to share their mastery in cooking, in mechanics, in caretaking, in gardening, in event hosting. These are all activities they were paying for, outside of their community. They were able to see how to bring these within their community, often with far greater quality.

I highly recommend this very personal story of a leader and a community, who stepped into saying Yes! to the choices they faced, to the abundance-based agreements residing right there in their own community.