Week of June 19

Dear Friends,
The summer is here (‘Father’s Day’ seems to mark that transition for me more than other things), and the time to slow down and re-create is upon us. Can I suggest some things that will help you do so?
(1) Looking for some good summer reading? Let me recommend two books to you.
First, The Jesus Creed by Scot McKnight. (Paraclete Press). The Men’s group has been reading through this book for the past year, and personally I have found it to be a simple, helpful, and encouraging way of encapsulating the Story of Scripture for our life today. I highly recommend it.
Second, You are What you Love by J. A. T. Smith (Baker). Every once in a while someone writes a book that catches the imagination of the church (across the spectrum of life). This book is one of those. Smith has taken his earlier (and more scholarly work) Desiring the Kingdom and composed a work that is accessible to all! His thesis is simple: we are created ‘liturgical beings’, which means that we are constantly being ‘formed’ by the liturgies of our culture (and those, not necessarily the ‘liturgies’ of the church). This is a book I have been buying for others and I highly recommend it to you.
(2) Carrying on the ‘theme’ of formation, let me remind you that in the wisdom of the church three things have stood out as especially formative practices for those desiring to live the faithful and fruitful life:
  • The commitment to corporate worship (especially the Eucharist) where we ‘practice the liturgies of the church–the liturgies of true life’;
  • The commitment to daily prayer (and reflection on Scripture), bringing our lives into the rhythm of the Story;
  • The commitment to Christian community (we are to ‘live life together’).
As you head into these summer months, where we seem to have the encouragement to ‘relax’ and ‘slow down’, why not use some of that reclaimed time to strengthen your ‘practices’ of these ‘commitments’.
(With that in mind, Lauren Gyorfi has produced a compendium of our ‘Home Groups’ that offer a way of ‘living within community’ at various levels for all of us. If you are not yet connected to one of these groups, pick up the sheet and prayerfully consider ‘showing up’).
Looking forward to worshiping with you all on Sunday (Shout out to all ‘Fathers’ as well! It’s great to be a ‘dad’, and an honor to have been given one).