Becoming Conversational #1 – Open Existing Meetings for Conversation

The Virtue of Dialogue - C. Christopher Smith

My ebook The Virtue of Dialogue: Conversation as a Hopeful Practice of Church Communities was released last week by Patheos Press, and in it, I argue that open conversation is essential for the health and flourishing of church communities and the places they inhabit.Over the next two weeks, I will be running a 10-part series that I am calling "Becoming Conversational" in which I offer suggestions for how churches might enrich the conversational life of their church communities.  (Some of these ideas have been adapted from my earlier ebook, Growing Deeper in Our Church Communities, which is … [Read more...]

A Tale of Two Manifestos

Le Figaro Futurist Manifesto

In February 1909, the Italian poet Filippo Tommaso Marinetti published his Futurist Manifesto in the French newspaper Le Figaro. The manifesto exalted the future over the past, violence and aggression over peace and ecstasy, immorality over morality, men over women, the young over the old, the machine over the land, and the known over the unknown. Marinetti also declared that “the splendor of the world has been enriched by a new beauty: the beauty of speed”: … [Read more...]

New Ebook – The Virtue of Dialogue

The Virtue of Dialogue - C. Christopher Smith

Chris has has a new little ebook that is now available from Patheos Press:The Virtue of Dialogue: Conversation as a Hopeful Practice of Church Communities. http://amzn.to/virtueofdialogueThis ebook narrates Englewood Christian Church's practice of conversation, how we -- a failed megachurch -- stumbled in the practice of conversation 15 years ago, and how it has transformed us and continues to transform us. A strong case is made that open, conversation is an essential and timely practice for all churches.Conversation -- and particularly dinner table conversation -- is … [Read more...]

More on the Drama of Scripture…

Thanks to everyone who added their thoughts to my post on Wednesday.  They have been immensely helpful in thinking about the drama of creation.  A particular thanks to Wes Vander Lugt, who pointed me to the following two books, which I have been devouring over the last couple of days, and finding very helpful.  I'm posting excerpts here, so that you might enjoy them as well...Improvisation: The Drama of Christian Ethics. Sam Wells. Brazos Press, 2004.*** CLICK HERE to read an excerpt from this book on Google BooksThe Drama of Doctrine. Kevin Vanhoozer. WJK Books, 2005. … [Read more...]

The Nature of the Scriptural Story (A Request)

Director's Chair

I'm currently working on a chapter of the Slow Church book on the scriptural story and why we believe that slowness is woven into the very fabric of this story.So, I've been trying to find an image that is helpful in talking about the nature of the scriptural story and how God and humanity interact together.  Here's the  basic image that I've stumbled upon.  (I know it's not completely original, drawing on sources like Bartholomew/Goheen's The Drama of Scripture and Lesslie Newbigin's work.) Creation is a grand drama, of which God is the playwright and director.  One of the distinctive thi … [Read more...]

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...]


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