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|Format: DRM Free ePub|
Vendor: B&H Books
Publication Date: 2008
In The Shape of Faith to Come, research expert Brad J. Waggoner and his team measure the beliefs and actions of 2,500 active Protestant churchgoers from across the country against seven key standards of Biblical spiritual formation:
- Learning the truth
- Obeying God and denying self
- Sharing faith
- Serving God and others
- Exercising Biblical faith
- Building solid relationships
- Seeking God
"Descriptive and prescriptive, this work will be seen as one of the best books ever written on what is really taking place in the discipleship process of Christians."
Thom S. Rainer, coauthor of the #1 best seller Simple Church
"The elephant in the room of evangelicalism is the surprising lack of discipled believers in all different kinds of churches. We have produced a cafeteria Christianity rather than a robust orthodoxy and Jesus-shaped spirituality. In this challenging and disturbing book, Brad Waggoner draws on twenty years of research in discipleship and spiritual formation to not just show us who we are, but to point us to what we must do. The Shape of Faith to Come will become a milestone as evangelicals begin to take discipleship seriously once again."
Ed Stetzer, coauthor of Lost and Found: The Younger Unchurched and Churches that Reach Them
"This book comes closer than any study with which I’m familiar to providing an insightful and objective evaluation of the spiritual condition of the church in America. Where is the church weak, and where is she strong? Some of the answers indicated by The Shape of Faith to Come may surprise you."
Donald S. Whitney, author of Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life
From the hard truths, the research team waited a full year and re-surveyed the original group to compare their growth over the course of a year. The last part of the book represents the findings in this area, and some were surprising.
Not surprising was the following conclusion by Waggoner and his group: Statistically, the number one issue correlated to higher maturity scores was the discipline of daily Bible reading. Being consistent in this discipline can be challenging, but it is doable. Waggoner concludes with a clarion call to pastors to be intentional and responsible in their ministries, Intentionality means that various people will have very specific responsibility for different aspects of the disciple-making strategy. Ultimately it is the pastors responsibility to make sure that intentions get executed.
If you are interested in the current state of the church, this is a must read for you. You will not enjoy this book, but you will find it beneficial to your ministry. As Jim Collins says, at some point we must face the brutal facts. - Craig Thompson, Senior Pastor, Malvern Hill Baptist Church
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