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Outreach 2022 RecommendedResource (Spiritual Growth)
All fruitful doing must begin with being. For many Christians, it’s easy to be swept up into the fast pace of modern life, desiring to do much for God. But we struggle to slow down and be with God.
According to pastor, Enneagram teacher, and author AJ Sherrill, being with God is what empowers doing for God. Sherrill shares his own journey from “busy” Christianity to the ancient paths of contemplative practices. He equips readers to integrate rhythms of stillness, silence, and solitude, offering step-by-step guidance and examples of finding solitude both personally and on retreats.
Sherrill warns that making these changes appears absurd in a society where time is money, productivity is central, and hurry is a way of life. He guides readers gently through the beginning and often confusing stages of contemplative practice. Citing timely insights from the world of neurology and mental health, he shows that solitude is crucial not only for Christian growth but also for holistic flourishing. Foreword by Rich Villodas.
Readers will emerge, centered in Christ, well on their way to this goal: slow down, pay attention, be still, and be loved.
Women are often told by their communities that being a mother will complete or define them. But many mothers find themselves depleted and spiritually stagnant amid the everyday demands of being a mom. They long to experience a rich inner life but feel there is rarely enough time, energy, or stillness to connect with God in a meaningful way.
This book takes the concept of rewilding and applies it to motherhood. Just as an environmentalist seeks to rewild land by returning it to its natural state, Shannon Evans invites women to rewild motherhood by reclaiming its essence through an expansive feminine spirituality.
Drawn from the contemplative Catholic tradition and Evans’s own parenting experience, Rewilding Motherhood helps women deepen their connection to God through practices inherent to the life they’re living now. Topics include work-life balance, identity, solitude, patience, household work, and mission for the common good. Throughout, Evans encourages women to see motherhood as an opportunity to discover a vibrant feminine spirituality and a deeper knowledge of God and self.
Christianity Today 2022 Book Award Finalist (Christian Living & Discipleship)
“[A] powerful debut. . . . This persuasive testament will appeal to Christians interested in the lesser-known women of the Bible.”–Publishers Weekly
“Armas expertly weaves her own abuelita’s history of personal faith and resistance into each chapter and intersects it with biblical text, creating an approachable work.”–Library Journal
What if some of our greatest theologians wouldn’t be considered theologians at all?
Kat Armas, a second-generation Cuban American, grew up on the outskirts of Miami’s famed Little Havana neighborhood. Her earliest theological formation came from her grandmother, her abuelita, who fled Cuba during the height of political unrest and raised three children alone after her husband passed away. Combining personal storytelling with biblical reflection, Armas shows us how voices on the margins–those often dismissed, isolated, and oppressed because of their gender, socioeconomic status, or lack of education–have more to teach us about following God than we realize.
Spiritual disciplines are often viewed primarily as a means to draw us closer to God. While these practices do deepen and enrich our “vertical” relationship with God, Kyle David Bennett argues that they were originally designed to positively impact our “horizontal” relationships–with neighbors, strangers, enemies, friends, family, animals, and even the earth. Bennett explains that this “horizontal” dimension has often been overlooked or forgotten in contemporary discussions of the spiritual disciplines.
This book offers an alternative way of understanding the classic spiritual disciplines that makes them relevant, doable, and meaningful for everyday Christians. Bennett shows how the disciplines are remedial practices that correct the malformed ways we do everyday things, such as think, eat, talk, own, work, and rest. Through personal anecdotes, engagement with Scripture, and vivid cultural references, he invites us to practice the spiritual disciplines wholesale and shows how changing the way we do basic human activities can bring healing, renewal, and transformation to our day-to-day lives and the world around us.
“Kwon and Thompson’s eloquent reasoning will help Christians broaden their understanding of the contemporary conversation over reparations.”–Publishers Weekly
“A thoughtful approach to a vital topic.”–Library Journal
Christians are awakening to the legacy of racism in America like never before. While public conversations regarding the realities of racial division and inequalities have surged in recent years, so has the public outcry to work toward the long-awaited healing of these wounds. But American Christianity, with its tendency to view the ministry of reconciliation as its sole response to racial injustice, and its isolation from those who labor most diligently to address these things, is underequipped to offer solutions. Because of this, the church needs a new perspective on its responsibility for the deep racial brokenness at the heart of American culture and on what it can do to repair that brokenness.
Christianity Today 2021 Book Award Winner (The Church/Pastoral Leadership Award of Merit)
Diary of a Pastor’s Soul tells the story of a fictionalized pastor, embarking on his final year before retirement, who reflects on the experiences and relationships that have formed his vocation and shaped his soul over a lifetime of pastoral ministry.
Drawing on his own experiences, seasoned pastor Craig Barnes invites readers to embrace the life lessons of a pastor who has been formed by his failures and his fleeting moments of glory, but most of all by discovering the holy in the routine but often quirky duties of being a parish pastor.
Through 52 weekly thematic entries, Barnes presents spirituality in narrative form through a collection of interwoven stories about learning to love others with curiosity, amazement, vulnerability, and most of all gratitude for the grace found in flawed lives.
Being a pastor is a complicated calling. Pastors are often pulled in multiple directions and must “become all things to all people” (1 Cor. 9:22). What does the New Testament say (or not say) about the pastoral calling? And what can we learn about it from the apostle Paul?
According to popular New Testament scholar Scot McKnight, pastoring must begin first and foremost with spiritual formation, which plays a vital role in the life and ministry of the pastor. As leaders, pastors both create and nurture culture in a church. The biblical vision for that culture is Christoformity, or Christlikeness. Grounding pastoral ministry in the pastoral praxis of the apostle Paul, McKnight shows that nurturing Christoformity was at the heart of the Pauline mission. The pastor’s central calling, then, is to mediate Christ in everything. McKnight explores seven dimensions that illustrate this concept–friendship, siblings, generosity, storytelling, witness, subverting the world, and wisdom–as he calls pastors to be conformed to Christ and to nurture a culture of Christoformity in their churches.