Tables in the Wilderness: A Memoir of God Found, Lost, and Found Again  -     By: Preston Yancey
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Tables in the Wilderness: A Memoir of God Found, Lost, and Found Again

Zondervan / 2014 / Hardcover

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Product Description

In Tables in the Wilderness, Preston Yancey, a conservative, Baptist, active-in-his-faith Christian, embarks on a journey that many have also taken: the movement from a secure faith into an overturned life. In the process Preston finds that God speaks in the wilderness, in cathedrals, in the Eucharist, in understandings that are bigger than narrow answers about God's will, and even in the silences in between.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 208
Vendor: Zondervan
Publication Date: 2014
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.60 X 1.40 (inches)
ISBN: 0310338824
ISBN-13: 9780310338826

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Publisher's Description

Preston Yancey arrived at Baylor University in the autumn of 2008 with his life figured out, then slowly each piece of his secure world fell apart: his church, his life of study, his politics, his girlfriend, his best friend, and his God.

It was the loss of God in the midst of all the godly things that would change Preston forever. One day he heard God say, "It’s going to be about trust with you," and then God was silent—and God still hasn’t spoken. At least, not in the ways Preston used to think were the only ways God spoke. Journey with Preston as he navigates becoming a patchwork of Anglican spirituality and Baptist sensibility, of reckoning with a God who is bigger than the one Preston thought he was worshiping: the God of a common faith, who makes tables in the wilderness, who is found in cathedrals and in forests and in the Eucharist, who speaks in fire and in wind, who is so big, that everything must be God’s.

Author Bio

Preston Yancey is a lifelong Texan raised Southern Baptist who fell in love with reading saints, crossing himself, and high church spirituality. He now makes his home within the Anglican tradition. He is a writer, painter, baker, and speaker. An alumnus of Baylor University, Preston completed a masters in theology from St. Andrews University in Scotland before returning to the States. He currently lives in Waco, Texas.

Editorial Reviews

… will appeal to young adult readers, especially those who are questioning their beliefs after being raised in Christian homes.
Well-written, engaging, and authentic...
Tables in the Wilderness:A Memoir of God Found, Lost, and Found Again is a record of Preston Yancey’s personal journey through a crisis in faith while he is an undergraduate student at Baylor University in Texas. He questions his Southern Baptist upbringing while at the same time trying to regain his intimate relationship with God; he can no longer hear God’s voice like he could when he was younger. Preston Yancey has written the memoir in a stream of consciousness style. This enables readers to experience firsthand the moments of worry, doubt, indecision, and frustration Preston goes through as he tries to figure out which denomination is the right one for him and why God is silent. Preston’s journey leads him to gaining a better understanding of Christian faith and into a richer and deeper relationship with God. This memoir will appeal to college students who believe in God, but sometimes feel abandoned by Him. They will find the memoir a guiding light as they seek to grow in their Christian faith. Because literature is an integral part of Preston’s journey, he includes a Suggested Reading List of influential books. The included Reading Guide is useful for individual and group study. Dianne Woodman, CLJ

Product Reviews

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Displaying items 1-3 of 3
Page 1 of 1
  1. Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    Difficult to Follow at times
    September 28, 2014
    Faith Hope and Homeschool
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    While I am trying to remain unbiased, as this IS an advanced reader's copy, I must say this book was very difficult to get into. It seemed to hop all over the place. I kept plugging through hoping it was just the beginning, but quickly became bogged down and had trouble 'keeping up.'
  2. Myerstown, PA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    No ordinary memoir
    September 24, 2014
    lmbartelt
    Myerstown, PA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Generally, when I read a book, I want it make me feel better. To escape or offer a solution to a problem. But lately, the books I've been reading haven't lived up to that need.

    They haven't made me feel better but they have made me feel.

    And that's where I am with Tables in the Wilderness: A Memoir of God Found, Lost and Found Again by Preston Yancey. (Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the book through the Booklook Bloggers program.)

    I love Yancey's writing. His blog is one that I read whenever he posts something new. And it's always challenging, often poetic, and downright refreshing. The book is all of that, too, in its own way. I will admit to stumbling a little in the beginning because Yancey's writing is different than most. It's good, just not easy. As he talks about his spiritual journey from a know-it-all Southern Baptist entering college to a questioning Anglican on the other side of college, the stories and observations roll out, sometimes chronologically, sometimes not. The first time I read Annie Dillard and Anne Lamott, I felt this sort of disconnectedness in the flow but realized as I was reading that it was all connected and related after all. This book has a similar feel.

    But it's a journey worth taking, and I found myself silently screaming "yes" to passages that reflected my own journey.

    I'm telling you to notice, because at a certain point I stopped. At a certain point, I stopped noticing that God was moving all around me, and I believe it was this lack of attention on my part, this willingness to treat common the awe of the Almighty, that would eventually arrive me to a place where God withdrew. (39)

    For me, reading this book was like drinking a glass of wine. On first taste, I am startled by the taste and I almost forget that I like it. Then I drink a little more and taste the flavors buried in the glass. And by the time I finish a glass, I am satisfied by the experience and not at all sorry.

    Tables in the Wilderness is a book for pilgrims and seekers, for those who don't have faith figured out, who wonder if anyone else feels the same way. For those who question the tradition in which they were raised, who have more questions than answers. It's one man's spiritual journey but it contains valuable truths for those of us on our own journeys. You might not like everything he has to say, but his story is worth the telling.
  3. Massachusetts
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    Too Earnest by Half
    August 31, 2014
    Kyliegirl
    Massachusetts
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 3
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 2
    I struggled with this book. The author is very earnest, but he hides behind endless layers of metaphor and philosophy. At key moments in the book, he simply refuses to tell us what happened, lurching into poetic imagery or jumping to a different time and place. He's clearly trying to be lyrical, looking for artful ways of alluding to situations rather than trusting the actual story to carry the reader forward. It felt like he wrote this book too soon after it happened and lacked the confidence to tell the whole story. That said, though, I hope he keeps writing. This could be an engaging story if told with a bit more perspective. This book will mainly appeal to teens and twenty-somethings immersed in Christian culture who understand how one could spend one's college years debating with friends about baptism.

    Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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