On the Origins of Books

Gilead and Home

Sometimes when I'm reading a good book, I come to a particular sentence or phrase that seems to have around it an aura of origin-ality. I can't help but wonder if this line might have sparked the creative fire that ended up as the book in my hands. I'm struggling this morning to come up with an example from my recent reading. But I can give a ridiculous example from my own writing life. … [Read more...]

iCEO: Part One

Steve Jobs Photo

The last great book I read in 2011 will be Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs. This is the first of two planned posts about Steve Jobs, consisting mostly of random thoughts about the book. Part Two will come next week.1. Steve Jobs is a valuable book, if we let it be. For all sorts of folks: business leaders, church leaders, lay people, writers and artists, consumers and producers, everyone.2. Isaacson follows Jobs from his early childhood (he was given up for adoption at birth) and precociously brilliant teenage years, to the creation of Apple, his fall from the top, the … [Read more...]

Sunday Book Review: The King Jesus Gospel

A key part of Slow Church is the recovery of what has been lost in the Christian faith through the reductions and shortcuts of modernity.  Scot McKnight does just this in his newest book with regard to the Gospel and evangelism.This review originally appeared in The Englewood Review of Books… “Recovering What Has Been Lost in the Industrialization of Christianity” A review of The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited by Scot McKnight. Review by Chris Smith. The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited Scot McKnight. Hardback: Zondervan, 2011. … [Read more...]

Sunday Book Review: ADVENT CONSPIRACY

What better book could there be to recommend on the first Sunday of Advent?  For more on what the Advent Conspiracy is, see John's recent post here, Plotting an Advent Conspiracy.  You might also be interested in this video with one of the AC instigators Chris Seay, talking about slowing our pace during the holidays.This review originally appeared in The Englewood Review of Books... “To Honor the Incarnation” A Review of Advent Conspiracy: Can Christmas Still Change the World? By Rick McKinley, Chris Seay and Greg Holder. Reviewed by Chris Smith. [ Read an Excerpt from … [Read more...]

Sunday Afternoon Book Review: The Sacredness of Questioning Everything by David Dark

Few writers have the capacity that David Dark has, to orchestrate familiar stories from literature and popular culture as part of engaging theological discourse. In his new book The Sacredness of Questioning Everything, David emphasizes that questioning, and more broadly that conversation, is an essential practice in the life of the Church. Indeed, conversation is fundamental to our identity as the community of God’s people, relating to one another and to God. It is a lost art that must be recovered and Dark skillfully navigates the complexity of life in conversation and we -- who a … [Read more...]

Sunday Afternoon Book Review: SCRIPTURE, CULTURE, AND AGRICULTURE by Ellen Davis.

This is one of the most helpful books in thinking about how we read the Bible and offers a way of reading the Bible that is much more in line with what we are describing here as Slow Church.(This review originally appeared in The Englewood Review of Books, 9 October 2009) “Of Mules and Mission” A Review of Scripture, Culture, and Agriculture: An Agrarian Reading of the Bible. by Ellen F. Davis. Paperback: Cambridge UP, 2008. Buy now: [ Amazon ] Reviewed by Stan Wilson.I am a Mississippi Baptist pastor who has begun to see the world differently because of the work … [Read more...]

Dorothy Day’s Birthday

The-Long-Loneliness

Today is the birthday of Dorothy Day - the journalist and social activist who co-founded the Catholic Worker movement. To mark the occasion, I'm posting the essay I wrote about Day's classic autobiography, The Long Loneliness. The essay first appeared in Besides the Bible: 100 Books that Have, Should, or Will Create Christian Culture (Biblica, 2010). I also encourage you to check out this wonderful video of Dorothy Day on the Christopher Closeup show.The photograph on the cover of HarperOne’s 1997 edition of The Long Loneliness, Dorothy Day’s classic spiritual autobiography, captures the c … [Read more...]


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