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Naked Spirituality: A Life with God in 12 Simple Words
HarperOne / 2011 / Hardcover
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* Are you disheartened because of unanswered prayers? Do you long to deepen your spiritual life? McLaren's refreshing introduction can help! Taking you beyond Sunday school memorization and desperate petitions, he shows that prayer is to the soul what breathing is to the body---a life-giving union with the Divine that transforms you from the inside out. 256 pages, hardcover from HarperOne.
Christianity is in crisis. Many sincere Christians feel their traditional Christian practices are in danger of becoming irrelevant, empty rituals. In his previous book A New Kind of Christianity, Brian D. McLaren offered new biblical models for how we understand the central ideas of a faith that provides hope for restoring and reinvigorating the power of the gospels to transform us and our communities.
In Naked Spirituality, McLaren takes his prophetic work a step further by confronting how the lack of a simple, doable, durable spirituality undermines the very transformation God is calling us to undergo. As a result, our religious structures become tools to maintain the status quo and not catalysts for personal and social change. McLaren presents a four-stage framework for understanding the spiritual life, and he unfolds spiritual practices appropriate to each stage. Each practice is rooted in a simple word: here, thanks, O, sorry, help, please, when, no, why, behold, yes, and silence. Naked Spirituality offers accessible, practical wisdom for living a truly spiritual life. Staying true to Jesus's core message while engaging faithfully with our postmodern world, McLaren presents a proven spiritual program for engaging in and sustaining a meaningful relationship with God.
Brian D. McLaren, hailed as one of America's 25 most influential evangelicals by Time magazine, is a speaker, social justice activist, pastor, and the author of A New Kind of Christianity, A Generous Orthodoxy, A New Kind of Christian, and The Secret Message of Jesus. McLaren has appeared on Nightline and Larry King Live, and his work has been covered in The Washington Post, the New York Times, Christianity Today, and many other publications. McLaren and his wife, Grace, live in Florida and have four adult children.
Christian evangelical author, teacher, and pastor McLaren (A New Kind of Christianity) started his writing career helping nondenominational evangelical churches adapt to the emergent, post-modern, post-Christendom era. His most recent books, however, are directed to those outside the church who identify as spiritual, not religious or those who find church lifeless. Using personal narrative, simple language devoid of church-speak, and self-deprecating humor, McLarens intimate voice envelops the reader with a sense of safety to match the vulnerability his title suggests. Beginning with a story of St. Francis of Assisi stripping naked before his father to reject his inheritance, and concluding with an invitation to skinny dip in the river of sacredness, McLaren presents four spiritual seasonssimplicity, complexity, perplexity, and harmonyaccompanied by 12 prayer practices. Each practice, described as simple, doable, and durable, is rooted in a single word (e.g. here, thanks, sorry, help, why, yes, behold). Conventional Christians may not welcome McLarens extravagant invitation to those on the religious margins, but anyone wanting to conserve the spiritual spark in themselves or someone else will find this book a gentle and generous tract. (Mar.) Copyright 2011 Reed Business Information.
“Wise, easy to read, and practical.”
“A rich, brilliant and important book: wonderfully readable and personal, filled with insight and wisdom, it invites us into practices that can transform our lives.”
“Brian McLaren is a bridge builder. In these simple yet profound spiritual practices he perfectly marries his evangelical heart and contemplative soul, and we are all richer for the union.”
“McLaren’s trademark persuasiveness is put to good effect as he continues to shatter paradigms for spiritual seekers.”
“Anyone wanting to conserve the spiritual spark in themselves will find this book a gentle and generous tract.”
“These stories are honest and kind and good... they illustrated the life of a real and raw experience of God and the human responses we offer.... This guidebook to simple words for a not so simple spirituality is an incredible gift, a true asset to us, bread for the journey.”
“McLaren both charts an arc of the spiritual life and suggests practices to nurture [it]. . . . McLaren deserves endless thanks for reminding us that estrangement and no do not represent a breakdown of the spiritual life. . . . Naked Spirituality is very astute.”
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