Missional Spirituality: Embodying God's Love from the Inside Out

Overview

If all of the earth is God's domain, why are Christians so terribly provincial? We rarely leave our church buildings, and our spirituality rarely takes us beyond ourselves.

Veteran church leaders Roger Helland and Leonard Hjalmarson observe that Jesus begins his mission in the temple, where he wows the religious elite and chides his parents by saying, "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?" But Jesus doesn't stay in the temple; ...

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Overview

If all of the earth is God's domain, why are Christians so terribly provincial? We rarely leave our church buildings, and our spirituality rarely takes us beyond ourselves.

Veteran church leaders Roger Helland and Leonard Hjalmarson observe that Jesus begins his mission in the temple, where he wows the religious elite and chides his parents by saying, "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?" But Jesus doesn't stay in the temple; indeed, in Christ the temple of the Lord is on the move—even to the ends of the earth.

In this book the authors helpfully reconnect spirituality and mission, showing you how the spiritual life, when lived properly, follows a similar progression: we "come home" to Christ, loving him from our heart and soul and mind and strength. And then we set forth to love our neighbors as ourself. Discover how through this process you can reclaim the whole of God's kingdom for his glory and the fulfillment of your heart's longing.

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Editorial Reviews

Gary Nelson
"After years of endless theoretical conversations about 'missional imagination,' Roger and Len take us to where we need to begin: a missional spirituality that creates the practices necessary for imagination and mission to emerge."
Peter H. Davids
"Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson offer us a guide to a spirituality that is deep and yet practical, mystical (in the best sense of the word) and yet missional. They cite many authors, and yet can boil the information in each chapter down so as to end with a series of exercises and discussion questions that will lead the reader into the depth of spiritual life that they commend. I recommend this book to all who do not want to escape the world, but rather want to engage and subvert the world from a life rooted and grounded in the trinitarian life of God."
Gordon T. Smith
"Roger and Len have provided something that is urgently needed: a contemporary guide to Christian spirituality that is integrated with the missional identity and practice of the church. And what is so encouraging is that they provide theological foundations to their study, draw on the spiritual wisdom of earlier movements in the life of the church and outline distinctive practices that can mark the life of the Christian in community. Equally significant, they give particular attention to the spiritual yearnings of this generation. The result is an invaluable resource for those who shape congregational life and witness."
Todd Hunter
"Doesn't spirituality end up in navel-gazing? Doesn't mission end up in spiritual burn out? No and no. Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson show us that the biblical vision of Christianity is indeed a missional spirituality."
Arnell Motz
"Missional Spirituality grows on you. At first it might seem to be another pitch for spiritual formation, but it actually goes much deeper than that. It forces us to think about a 'spirituality that forms and feeds mission.' It doesn't allow us to be content with our 'Temple competencies' and our methods for doing church. It is a call for the church to be committed to its spirituality by emphasizing the motivation for spiritual formation and being missional. I found myself wishing for this kind of stimulation when I began ministry forty years ago."
Stuart Murray Williams
"Missional Spirituality delivers on its title, reconnecting missional practice and the spirituality needed to sustain such practice. Written from the Pietist tradition but drawing on many sources, and set in the context of profound cultural transition, this book provides a theological foundation for a truly missional spirituality and a range of practices to earth this spirituality in daily life."
Kenton C. Anderson
"Somewhere between emergence and resurgence lies an insistent call to mission. Rather than choosing sides in the growing debate between whether the church should be more Word-centered or more culturally focused, Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson call us all to our mutual concern for gospel mission. The spiritual life is lived in relationship on earth as it is in heaven. Roger and Len help us greatly by showing us how. Full of examples and ideas, Missional Spirituality challenges us to a more faithful and more fruitful Christian life."
Steve Holt and Daniel Rolfe
"All mission flows from a transformed life. With the turbulent cultural waves of liminality and change crashing upon us, a missional disciple must abide in Jesus as a loving, Spirit-empowered missionary. Roger and Len navigate a fresh perspective centered in Jesus, his creed for our lives, and the power that flows from his heart into ours and then out to the world. If you are tired of shallow outward techniques, and hungry for a deeper missional spirituality, then we highly recommend this book."
David Fitch
"Until we deal with the question of spiritual formation, 'missional church' will remain a lot of talk. Missional Spirituality addresses this issue for the church in North America. It's an intense and lively study that covers lots of ground. Rooting their study in the Great Commandment, Scripture, history and the manifold literature of mission, Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson push us through theology and practice to real life. We learn how to become missionaries, not just talk about it. Highly compelling. I recommend it for all who want to explore what it means to embody God's love from the inside out."
Michael Frost
"I found myself saying, 'Yes, yes, yes,' as I read Missional Spirituality. So many books on spirituality are focused on self-improvement and private pietistic devotion, and they often leave me cold and uninspired. Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson helpfully reconnect spirituality and mission, believing all truly Christian spiritual formation to be for the sake of the world. They take Jesus as their supreme example, the one who claimed that he was nourished by doing his Father's will and work. This book is a triumph."
Reggie McNeal
"Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson have gifted us with a well-crafted, multidimensional, life-challenging volume in their Missional Spirituality. The excellent scholarship is matched equally with an inspirational voice. The resulting combination is compelling and convicting at the same time. Take time to let this book read you."
Nathan McCorkindale
"There are many books about either missional living or spiritual disciplines, but few are as intentional about bringing the two together as Missional Spirituality. . . . [It] addresses that fundamental tension between personal piety and caring for neighbors."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780830838073
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press
  • Publication date: 10/5/2011
  • Pages: 253
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

D.Min. Roger Helland (Trinity Western Unversity, Langley, B.C.) is district executive coach for the Baptist General Conference in Alberta, Canada. His other books include The Journey, The Revived Church and Let the River Flow.

Len Hjalmarson (D.Min.) is lead pastor at Aylmer Evangelical Mennonite Mission Church in Aylmer, Ontario, Canada, and serves as missional navigator for the Ontario region of the EMMC. Len is a founding member of the Resonate network and sits on the board of Cultivate in Ontario. He is also part of the adjuct faculty at Northern Seminary in Chicago.

His other books include An Emerging Dictionary for the Gospel and Culture, The Missional Church Fieldbook, and contributing editor of Fresh and Refresh and Voices of the Virtual World.

Alan Hirsch is the founding Director of Forge Mission Training Network. He is the co-founder of shapevine.com, an international forum for engaging with world transforming ideas. He leads Future Travelers, a learning journey applying missional-incarnational approaches to established churches and is an active participant in The Tribe of LA, a Jesus community among artists and creatives in Los Angeles.

Known for his innovative approach to mission, Hirsch is a teacher and key mission strategist for churches across the western world. His popular book The Shaping of Things to Come (with Michael Frost) is widely considered to be a seminal text on mission. Alan's recent book The Forgotten Ways, has quickly become a key reference for missional thinking, particularly as it relates to movements. His book ReJesus is a radical restatement about the role that Jesus plays in defining missional movements. Untamed, his latest book (with his wife Debra) is about missional discipleship for a missional church.

His experience in leadership includes leading a local church movement among the marginalized as well as heading up the Mission and Revitalization work of his denomination. Hirsch is an adjunct professor at Fuller Seminary and lectures frequently throughout Australia, Europe, and the U.S.

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Table of Contents

Foreword by Alan Hirsch
Preface
Acknowledgments
1. Exploring a Missional Spirituality
2. Challenges for a Missional Spirituality
3. Theological Foundations
4. Missional Spirituality in Action
5. Your Heart and Soul 1
6. Your Heart and Soul 2
7. Your Mind Matters
8. From All Your Strength
9. Love Your Neighbor
10. The Gospel According to You
Afterword
Appendix 1: Equipping for a Missional Spirituality in the Church and Academy
Appendix 2: Missional Spirituality in Action: Gateway Community Church
Notes
About the Authors

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