Abductive Columns

Thursday, February 03, 2005

New Book, New Wineskins

Keith Brenton was gracious enough to buy and have amazon.com send me Doug Pagitt’s book Reimagining Spiritual Formation, a book I’ve had on my amazon wish list for some time. Thanks Keith!

While I’m thinking of it, Keith has just set-up a new blog for New Wineskins. org an e-zine I’ve written for. It’s rare I risk mentioning my spiritual heritage for fear of legalistic embarrassment. That said, I excitedly say there’s another side of my heritage that shines like a bright light high upon a hill. This new Church of Christ is a constant, steady, ever swelling movement intentionally spreading grace and the story of Jesus across this great nation and around the world. It’s a church that believes in unity and is constantly extending fellowship and mending the divisions within its own heritage. It’s a new brotherhood willing and motivated to give up the exclusivity it modeled for over fifty decades in exchange for a broader fellowship with the church catholic. When I tell you our community's spiritual health is the best it has been in the last fifty years I break out in joyous laughter. When I say we're doing very well spiritually...believe me, we're doing well! I consider New Wineskins.org to be the signature and voice of this emerging Church of Christ.

Back to Reimagining Spiritual Formation: I love the book’s layout. The best way to say it is-- this book has various components found in a faith community that Doug has spread across its 160 pages. Journal entries by various members of Solomon’s Porch and many of Doug’s thoughts on art, giving, worship as spiritual formation and on and on. Looks like a great read.

Here’s a profound paragraph from the book.

We join the many people, professionals and lay, who have suggested in writings, conversations, prayers, and pleadings that the Christian Church has not lived up to its potential or calling in the post-industrialized world, but that it could. Maybe there is something to the critique that the church is marginalized in the world to such a degree that the marks of a “successful” church have been reduced to tangible evidence such as size, market share, political influence, healthy budgets, and the creation of model citizens living the American dream. I’ve become convinced that our misguided belief that life change can come through proper knowledge acquired through education has failed to produce the kind of radical commitment to life in harmony with God in the way of Jesus that we are called to.


At 8:27 PM, Blogger Keith Brenton said...

Looking forward to reading it, too; glad you like it so far! Thanks again for blessing my life through your writing.

At 1:04 PM, Blogger c said...


Doug's book is great. The main thing about it is this: this is not the formula to Emergent or Postmodern or whatever. This is what God has shown us what he wants us to be in our context and community. Reading a book like this makes me want to live in monastic style community. Let me know what you think of the book when you finish.


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