Earthy Mysticism: Spirituality for Unspiritual People  -     By: Tex Sample
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Earthy Mysticism: Spirituality for Unspiritual People

Abingdon Press / 2008 / Paperback

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Product Description

In "Earthy Mysticism" Tex Sample shares several stories from his life and ministry. Often gritty, sometimes dark, he explores these situations looking for God in each of them. His blue-collar theology emerges as refreshing and honest, presenting the God who enters into all the messy details of our lives.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 128
Vendor: Abingdon Press
Publication Date: 2008
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0687649897
ISBN-13: 9780687649891
Availability: Usually ships in 24-48 hours.

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Publisher's Description

This book, says the author, is “a testimony of narratives where [a] strange God appears. Such appearances supply the mystical states that have come to shape my life. I am not helped much by conventional approaches to spirituality. I find it almost impossible to do ‘devotions.’ Daily Bible study in the sense of devoting twenty to thirty minutes a day never worked for me. I cannot get around to scheduled times for prayer on my knees with head bowed. I find labyrinths and prayer beads boring. I am ever and again distracted in silent meditation. I simply cannot sustain a spirituality based in such things.
“I do not regard myself as unusual or special. My hunch, and it is more than that, is that a host of people will recognize themselves in what I describe here. What is here is, clearly, my story, but it is not about me. It is about a God of surprises, of One who comes in the ordinary and the seamy. It is about a God who will goose you. It is about mystical moments when clearly the only thing that finally matters is this God who will never leave us alone, especially in the ordinary and angular places of life. It is, I hope, a spirituality for unspiritual people.”
From the Circuit Rider review: "Tex Sample’s new book, Earthy Mysticism: Spirituality for Unspiritual People, simultaneously says a whole lot and very little about the subject of mysticism. The word “mysticism” itself only shows up in the introduction and the last chapter, bracketing the book with a concept that Sample doesn’t fully define or even directly reflect on the meaning of. That being said, Sample never claims to be writing a scholarly view of what mysticism might be, but instead attempts to show how one can recognize the presence of the holy in everyday life. In this he succeeds powerfully." (Click here to read the entire review.)

Author Bio

Tex Sample is a free lance lecturer, workshop leader and preacher. He serves as the coordinator of The Network for the Study of U.S. Lifestyles. From 1967-1999 he was the Robert B. and Kathleen Rogers Professor of Church and Society at Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, Missouri.

Endorsements

“Through tears and laughter, Tex Sample moves us from remote piety to the clear awareness of God-with-us in the midst of all of life. These stories from a master storyteller give words to the “un-talk-about-able” nature of God, leaving one breathless with awe.” —Jane Allen Middleton, Resident Bishop Harrisburg Area, The United Methodist Church

“It ought to be official: Tex Sample is a ‘national treasure.’ From one of the world’s greatest living storytellers, this book showcases a master at work, one who knows the value of lifting up stories he stops just short of telling.” —Leonard Sweet, Drew Theological School, George Fox University, editor of The Church of the Perfect Storm

“Tex Sample weaves together heaven and earth, grit and glory, unveiling a God who is shockingly present. This is spirituality shaped by the streets; mysticism embodied by a motorcycle gang; raucous resistance to a narrowing religiosity that confines spirit to sanctuaries and salvation to the churched. In these holy, haunting, healing stories, Tex unleashes a disruptive invitation to dance with the God of surprises into the fullness of life.” —Janet Wolf, pastor, preacher, professor, and community organizer, learning to dance

Publisher Description

This book, says the author, is “a testimony of narratives where [a] strange God appears. Such appearances supply the mystical states that have come to shape my life. I am not helped much by conventional approaches to spirituality. I find it almost impossible to do ‘devotions.’ Daily Bible study in the sense of devoting twenty to thirty minutes a day never worked for me. I cannot get around to scheduled times for prayer on my knees with head bowed. I find labyrinths and prayer beads boring. I am ever and again distracted in silent meditation. I simply cannot sustain a spirituality based in such things.

“I do not regard myself as unusual or special. My hunch, and it is more than that, is that a host of people will recognize themselves in what I describe here. What is here is, clearly, my story, but it is not about me. It is about a God of surprises, of One who comes in the ordinary and the seamy. It is about a God who will goose you. It is about mystical moments when clearly the only thing that finally matters is this God who will never leave us alone, especially in the ordinary and angular places of life. It is, I hope, a spirituality for unspiritual people.”

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