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So You Don't Want to Go to Church Anymore: An Unexpected Journey

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Overview

Jake Colsen, an overworked and disillusioned pastor, happens into a stranger who bears an uncanny resemblance (in manner) to the apostle John. A number of encounters with John as well as a family crisis lead Jake to a new understanding of what his life should be like: one filled with faith bolstered by a steady, close relationship with the God of the universe. Facing his own disappointment with Christianity, Jake must forsake the habits that have made his faith rote and ...

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So You Don't Want to Go to Church Anymore: An Unexpected Journey

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Overview

Jake Colsen, an overworked and disillusioned pastor, happens into a stranger who bears an uncanny resemblance (in manner) to the apostle John. A number of encounters with John as well as a family crisis lead Jake to a new understanding of what his life should be like: one filled with faith bolstered by a steady, close relationship with the God of the universe. Facing his own disappointment with Christianity, Jake must forsake the habits that have made his faith rote and rediscover the love that captured his heart when he first believed.

Compelling and intensely personal, SO YOU DON'T WANT TO GO TO CHURCH ANYMORE relates a man's rebirth from performance-based Christianity to a loving friendship with Christ that affects all he does, thinks, and says. As John tells Jake, "There is nothing the Father desires for you more than that you fall squarely in the lap of his love and never move from that place for the rest of your life."

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780964729223
  • Publisher: Windblown Media
  • Publication date: 9/2/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 215,758
  • Product dimensions: 5.37 (w) x 8.37 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Wayne Jacobsen and Dave Coleman are longtime friends, former pastors, and current ministers in the name of Jesus. Formerly a contributing editor to Leadership Journal, Wayne has written numerous books on Christianity. You can find his other books, blog, and articles at lifestream.org, and his weekly podcast at thegodjourney.com. Wayne lives in Moorpark, California, with his wife, Sara. Dave Coleman is a retired hospice chaplain who continues to teach and counsel people on how to live closely with Jesus. Dave lives in Visalia, Caifornia.

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Table of Contents


Stranger and Stranger Still     13
A Walk in the Park     22
This is Christian Education?     37
Why Your Promises Haven't Worked     53
Love With a Hook     65
Loving Father or Fairy Godmother?     77
When You Dig a Hole For Yourself, You Have To Throw the Dirt on Someone     88
Unplayble Lies     99
A Box By Any Other Name     111
Won to Trust     127
Taking Flight     140
The Great Gathering     155
A Final Parting     171
Why I Don't Go To Church Anymore     181
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 79 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(43)

4 Star

(18)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(7)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 79 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The title is one that is odd to be found in the Christian reading section, but it says what most of us are afraid to admit.

    I thought this book was absolutely amazing. It was one of the first books in a long time that I didn't want to put down. I felt guilty for even picking it up because of the title. It is not one of the typical "church-bashing" books. Sometimes, when you read books that think differently from the "traditional" church institution, they can lean more towards bashing, but this one does not. It tells a beautiful story of the hearts and good intentions of people who love the Lord, but who often get stuck in the routine of church-going, thinking, acts, etc...It's a wonderful read. My words can't do it any justice. You have to read it for yourself.d

    15 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2008

    The book uses questionable logic

    Ok, i suppose i have a few positives and several negatives. I guess ill start with the positives. Despite the fact that i found myself in profound disagreement with ¿John¿ on several issues, there are some excellent points he makes that can serve to caution us to examine our motives. He also reminds us not to allow ourselves to just become part of the ¿machinery.¿ I get the impression that the book was written with great sincerity and with the intent to free people. That being said¿ I tend to think that the general theme of the book was rather simplistic and gave evidence of the authors¿ predisposition to blame the contemporary church for almost every problem or dysfunction in the life of the church members. Disillusioned?¿Obviously your church has failed to provide an authentic forum for faith. Bitter?¿Must be because you were manipulated and used by self righteous power mongers. Stressed? ¿Must be because the church is pulling you one way while God is beckoning you in another. They fail to address these states of being as a common to the human condition. The book implies progressive freedom from such problems, only once freed from the bondage that church imposes. I say, the church is filled with people, people are flawed and sinful, therefore chuch is not without baggage. Can churches be found that reflect their jaded characiture of hypocrital religion? Sure. Do all or even most churches operate with such mercenary motives? I strongly doubt it. I know a good deal of people that strike me as sincerely wanting to serve others. I dont get the impression that they are part of some grand shame-management scheme. I honestly believe they have, in their zeal to shed light on the ¿scheme¿ of organized religion, used a straw man argument. They address only the easiest church stereotypes. The ¿worship¿ song that Jake overhears has questionable lyrics that are easy to critque. Convenient that they didnt overhead ¿On Christ the solid Rock i Stand.¿ It would have been much more difficult to illustrate the shallowness of church with it. When Jake¿s former church grew it was because two other churches were ¿hemmoraging¿ as one pastor left scandal-ridden and the other left for a larger congregation. It would have been much more difficult to explain the church growth had there been no scandal to refer to. The authors set up straw man after straw man and then knock them down. I was rather disappointed because the discussion could have been so much more engaging but for me, it ended up being profoundly frustrating.

    8 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 3, 2009

    Thought provoking and powerful indictment of the modern day church

    So You Don't Want to Go to Church Anymore by Wayne Jacobsen & Dave Coleman is a thought-provoking book creating a conversation about Jesus and the church. Jake is facing major struggles in his church that are tearing his faith apart when he meets a stranger named John. John asks questions about what Jake is looking for that over the course of a four-year period profoundly change Jake's entire life. I have to admit that I was at first disappointed when I cracked open this book. I was expecting a non-fiction title that could tackle the hard questions I was having myself about church; however, because the authors frame the book as a fictional series of conversations, I found my questions were answered more thoroughly than they could have been in a non-fiction title. John emphasizes trusting in God rather than in the institution of church. Some churches have vibrant faith and the presence of the Spirit, but far more are about cultural acceptance. The church isn't a building of a certain denomination of believers. The church, as described within the Bible, is the entire body of believers from around the world and throughout history. It's a powerful indictment of what church has become. As someone who has recently been hurt deeply by two churches, I could relate to the authors' tale, not everyone else will, but the book has some terrific points about the troubles that can be found in church. I think it's a valuable book for everyone in hopes of revolutionizing the way we view faith and church.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This can be a life-changing book when you aren't looking to change your life!

    This is a wonderful book. I didn't read it because I was questioning my faith but more because of the author, Wayne Jacobsen. I just wanted to gobble up everything he wrote after I read "The Shack". I can pick out just a sentence or two that sings to me, and yet each time I peruse this book I find more sentences with songs to be sung! How I pray has changed in a very positive way. This book also validated some of the feelings I have had about my Roman Catholic upbringing, even though it is not strictly about any particular religion. It validated, with a non-preachy approach, what I have felt for years. It also made me question some things. I expect a book like this to do both, and I was very satisfied.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    This Book Is About Renewing Your Faith

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. This book is not about making me want to bust back into my church's doors and say take me back, I understand now. It's about developing a closer relationship with God. I am grateful to have read it. It was a great read at the right time.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Exellent and Profound!

    This book is a MUST read for anyone searching for Authentic Christianity. In a very loving way, the author shows the errors in the church, and offers relationship with Jesus, not attendance driven performance based religion. What is true Christianity? Read this book, search the scriptures, discover for yourself that you are meant to live on this earth just as Jesus, your relationship with Him is to be the basis of your relationship with people on this earth.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    here is another book you may want to check out...

    this book you may also like similar, only it is a real story not a made up one, and it is way better, highly recommend Life after church by brian sanders

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    A true Christian book

    As a long time, active Christian, I was initially appalled at the title when I saw it in the book store. I took a look at the contents and was soon drawn into the subject matter as Mr. Jacobsen addresses in a both a humorous and impactful way what church is meant to be. I have used it in a Bible study group and all have found it helpful in their walk with the Lord.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Left me thinking

    This book kept my interest throughout; gave me much to think about as to what really is in our afterlife.....and also, as to what the word 'Church' really means. I would recommend this book to all, those that feel they can't do enough, those that feel they have failed, and those who just don't know what to do.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 9, 2009

    So you don't want to go to church anymore...or do you?

    Excellent book. Finally, someone has articulated and a very easy, enjoyable style, a lot of what I've felt for years. This book will challenge you to stop thinking about church as a building or a Sunday morning social event, and look at what God is actually calling you to - a relationship. This book may shake up a few long-held views, cause you to question things you've been told, and may, if you're lucky, help you to leave some of the guilt trips behind. But it will definitely draw you into looking at your faith and considering what an intimate relationship with a living God is all about. I recommend it for all who are searching and even more for those who don't think they are.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 16, 2009

    Thought provoking.

    It was the title of this book that caught my eye. This was not something I was looking for or had heard about prior to seeing it on the book shelf. It was a must take home and a must read. It gave me a lot to think about and explained to me some of the reasons I feel the way I do about the way things are done in my church. Also showed me some things that we need to change to make everyone (both old and new members) more comfortable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 19, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The name says it all!

    This book will change your life profoundly.It is a must read for anyone searching for freedom from the religious behavior code so many churches have ascribed to Christianity. If you are wondering why you do not want to go to church anymore, this book will help you understand what you have sensed already... Churchianity is lethal to your soul.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2008

    OUTSTANDING, CHALLENGING, INSIGHTFUL

    This book speaks to many of my personal concerns with the practices in churches in the West. The story line is intriguing - a real page turner. The authors really challenged me to consider why so much emphasis is put on church programming and 'doctrine' rather than relationships. Is the church in the West really fulfilling what Jesus commanded? Are we individually willing to step out of the box and ask Jesus to give us a fresh perspective on what it looks like to follow Him?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2007

    A Refreshing Look at 'church' for Christians and NonChristians

    This book does a wonderful job raising questions about Christianity and the Church. No matter how much or how little interaction you have had with a church, this fable about a man's journey to find himself and his relationship with God, will give you some wonderful insight about your own experiences. It is a fantastic book for discussion and can challenge the thinking of even the most educated Theologian.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2014

    Eye opening

    As i struggle with my own walk this is enlighting. I like the ending definition of Church; makes so much more appealing!

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  • Posted February 5, 2012

    Highly Recommended for Anyone Who Was Raised in the Church and Everybody Else Too!

    I have been in church pretty much since shortly after my birth which is almost 44 years ago. This book has helped me to see that the building and the rules do not make up the church as we know it - that is called legalism. It is and always has been about the people - WE are the church. I now see that I can be as involved as I want to be, but I only feel guilt when I cannot live up to my end of the bargain because of life situations or whatever comes along. That is a lie from Satan. Works is not what it is about, even though we do them thinking somehow we are getting brownie points. This book is a MUST read. It has changed my life forever!

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  • Posted March 13, 2011

    Great book

    this is probably one of the best books i read in 2009. for every christian who is willing to be honest about wanting more than a Sunday morning fix. read and be refreshed!

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  • Posted January 12, 2011

    a must read

    reconsider how well you really know the father

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  • Posted October 13, 2010

    This is about the Authors beliefs, not Fathers teachings

    These authors are SELLING their own excuse of a faithfilled relationship. Although some of their spiritual issues are worthy, their solutions provide misguided excuses for life giving faith and salvation. The opinion that this book presents is shallow and narrow and manipulates scripture/gospel to fulfill the authors's own convienently designed faith opinion of what their relationship with the Father might be.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    Not what I was looking for.

    I was looking for something to recharge my faith and improve my church going. I wanted to be motivated to attend church and enhance the Christian community experience. This simply gave me an excuse not to go to church and avoid the responsibility of being a Christian. Plus it was packaged in magic and metaphysical devices that aren't really the teachings of Christ. If you are looking for permission to skip church, this is the book for you.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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