I have had this book laying around for at least two years, and would always put off reading it for some reason. Either I was busy reading required curriculum or just not expecting to enjoy reading a book about slavery. However, I quickly learned that this was not at all a book about slavery but rather a book about a former slave that took an interest in young people and taught them to reach beyond their background in society.
I was told by a friend to buy the book while at a Goodwill store, and it was only 25 cents! After reading Up From Slavery, I truly believe that this book is much more valuable than the price in which I paid. The autobiography of Booker T. Washington was inspiring, and instructive in training young people to grow beyond societies expectations.
Up from Slavery: an autobiography (Booker T. Washington)
“But to teach the Negro to do skillful work, as men of all the races that have risen have worked,—responsible work, which IS education and character; and most of all when Negroes so teach Negroes to do this that they will teach others with a missionary zeal that puts all ordinary philanthropic efforts to shame,—this is to change the whole economic basis of life and the whole character of a people.”
This excerpt alone shows the heart, method, and example that is clearly laid out for us in the scriptures in training leaders to carry out our Lord’s Great Commission! If we are to be effective in training leaders, we must invest ourselves in them, teach them biblical priorities, and train them to reach and teach their own! This is Indigenous Missions at it’s finest.
It was also said of Mr. Washington that, “He lectures to his advanced students on the art of right living, not out of text-books, but straight out of life.” This is yet another great example of leading by example, discipleship training like Christ, and practicing “with-ness.”
I recommend this book to anyone that desires to be better equipped in Reaching, Teaching, Training, and Sending!