In Faithful Presence, noted pastor and scholar David Fitch offers a new vision for the witness of the church in the world. He argues that we have lost the intent and practice of the sacramental ways of the historic church, and he recovers seven disciplines that have been with us since the birth of the church. Through numerous examples and stories, he demonstrates how these revolutionary disciplines can help the church take shape in and among our neighborhoods, transform our way of life in the world, and advance the kingdom.
This book will help you re-envision church, what you do in the name of church, and the way you lead a church. It recovers a future for the church that takes us beyond Christendom. Embrace the call to reimagine the church as the living embodiment of Christ, dwelling in and reflecting God's faithful presence to a world that desperately needs more of it.
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About the Author
Fitch coaches a network of church plants in the Christian and Missionary Alliance and he writes, speaks, and lectures on issues the local church must face in mission including cultural engagement, leadership and theology. He has also written numerous articles in periodicals such as Christianity Today, The Other Journal, Missiology as well as various academic journals.
Table of ContentsIntroduction: Searching for the Real ChurchPart I: God's Faithful Presence
1. God's Faithful Presence
2. To Change the WorldPart II: The Seven Disciplines
3. The Discipline of the Lord's Table
4. The Discipline of Reconciliation
5. The Discipline of Proclaiming the Gospel
6. The Discipline of Being with the "Least of These"
7. The Discipline of Being with Children
8. The Discipline of the Fivefold Gifting
9. The Discipline of Kingdom Prayer
Epilogue: How God Changes the World
Appendix 1: What Formation Looks Like Around the Table
Appendix 2: The Indispensible Role of the Dotted Circle in the Disciplines
Appendix 3: Extending the Presence: An Alternative Basis for Ecclesiology and Mission
Appendix 4: Where Is the Church? A Closer Look at Matthew 25
Appendix 5: A Simple History of the Disciplines from New Testament Church to Christendom