Home > Culture > Renovation of the Church: What happens when a seeker church discovers spiritual formation

Renovation of the Church: What happens when a seeker church discovers spiritual formation

IVP Books, Intervarsity Press, 2011

RRP $16.95

Reviewed by Jenny Coombes. Pastor of Murgon/Goomeri church, a church being challenged as to what it means to be church on a rural community.

HAVE you ever had the suspicion or vague feeling that there is something missing from your faith life, or your church life?

If so, then this book may help you articulate what it is that you are sensing.

Identified by the publishers as being written for leaders of churches who are seeking a spiritual renewal or transformation in their church, this book would also be helpful for members of any congregation who are seeking something more, something deeper, but can't quite identify what it is.

It helps to explain what spiritual formation is – a term that baffles quite a few people these days.

The book tells the story of Oak Hills Church in the USA whilst briefly outlining their rise as a seeker church and the success they enjoyed utilising a well known and well oiled model of delivering entertaining services each Sunday.

But then they became aware that there was more to Christianity then conversion – people were called to be disciples of Jesus – not just believe in Jesus.

People were also called to be more than entertained by their church service, more than just consumers.

With pastors who were both physically and spiritually depleted, alongside a committed team of Elders, the church declared war on consumer Christianity and started seeking ways of becoming disciples of Christ.

Mike and Kent are frank and talk of their failures as well as their successes in this process.

This book challenges us to look at how we worship and why we worship, what we expect from our faith – and what our faith expects from us.

Through asking the question, 'Do you actually want to be healed or transformed by Jesus', they challenge their church members and us to struggle with our own faith as we seek to be 'apprentices of Jesus'.