"I was in the middle of this burgeoning activist career – anti-nuclear cause – and I was really fretful and anxious about my capacity to save the world from itself."
What followed the Baptist minister's anxiousness was a "Damascus Road" experience, described in a new Skype interview with EthicsDaily.com.
Tyler Wigg-Stevenson, founding director of the Two Futures Project, talks about his new book, "The World Is Not Ours to Save: Finding the Freedom to Do Good," in a Skype interview with EthicsDaily.com
Skype Interview: Tyler Wigg-Stevenson from EthicsDaily on Vimeo.
Wigg-Stevenson's new book peels back the "activist spirituality" driving many younger Christians.
"I think there's a deep passion for working for justice, for working against poverty, for really tackling root causes. On the whole I think that's a wonderful thing," says Wigg-Stevenson, who holds degrees from Swarthmore College and Yale Divinity School.
"But I also think it's got significant spiritual and practical pitfalls," he says, like "the risk of burnout, the risk of becoming disillusioned with our capacity to make really widespread change."
Wigg-Stevenson says "The World Is Not Ours to Save," available in paperback and on Kindle, is meant as a word of encouragement in this spiritual moment.
The book is for more than those who self-identify as activists, he says. It's for anyone who wants to live out her or his faith in public.
"I think that in any attempt to do good, there are two spirits, two logics at work," says Wigg-Stevenson, who chairs the Global Task Force on Nuclear Weapons.
One is the spirit of control; the other is the spirit of genuine service.
"Whether or not I can obtain a certain outcome, whether or not my activism is going to be successful, it's a representation of my fidelity," says Wigg-Stevenson. "It's simply a manifestation: This is what being faithful to God looks like."
Activism motivated by the spirit of service, he says, relinquishes control but gains the freedom to do good.
Watch the interview with Wigg-Stevenson at vimeo.com/ethicsdaily/skype-tylerws
Learn more about Wigg-Stevenson and the book at patheos.com/Books/Book-Club/Tyler-Wigg-Stevenson-The-World-Is-Not-Ours-to-Save.html
Order the book at amazon.com/The-World-Not-Ours-Save/dp/0830836578
Watch other EthicsDaily.com Skype interviews at vimeo.com/ethicsdaily