Monday, July 07, 2008

Offending My Mind / Awakening My Heart

It is quite funny to me the authors who have really been speaking to me in the books I’ve been reading as of late. There is something in my non-denomination, evangelical, charismatic background that is so offended by the stuff I’ve found myself reading. It wasn’t too many years ago that I thought that pretty much anyone who was not a non-denominational, evangelical, “spirit-filled” Christian was not a “real” Christian. I figured God would probably let folks from those other streams of Christianity into heaven but I didn’t really think that any of those “others” were actually experiencing the fullness of God in the present. I have really come to see the error of my ways in recent years, how my own arrogance and ignorance has kept me cut off from some truly dear brothers and sisters in Christ from other denominations and movements that really do have so many rich insights on the spiritual life.

My current list of books I’ve been reading includes a deceased Catholic priest, a Greek Orthodox bishop, a retired Presbyterian pastor, an Anglican Bishop, and French Counselor from the court of King Louis XIV (about 300 years ago). I am utterly amazed at how these authors seem to be speaking to my life in such a fresh and relevant way when I have lived my whole life outside of any of their traditions.

So here are some of the books that have been rocking my world over the last few months:

Reaching Out by Henri Nouwen
Surprised by Hope by N. T. Wright
The Orthodox Way by Kalistos Ware
The Seeking Heart by Francois Fenelon
Answering God by Eugene Peterson
Addiction and Grace by Gerald May


marcia Anderson said...

I enjoyed all three blogs. I am rereading Answering God by Peterson right now. Unlike Ezra, it is one of my all time favorite books. It has gotten me out of the personal, pious, selfish, it's about me praying and convicted me of my isolated prayer life. I am in love with the Psalms in a new way and am hungry for more of the why of them and how to use them daily in the life of the church.

Mark said...

It seems that God has been speaking to me more through other reading materials as well.

Recent good stuff
Streams of Living Water - Richard Foster
The Shack - William Young
several by Karen Kingsbury

Crispin Schroeder said...

I just started reading The Shack a few days ago and am almost done. Great book. Very interesting read. Sometimes it takes art to truly give us a better understanding of theology because of the way it can connect with our hearts. The Shack scores in this respect.