Book Review: Untitled by Blaine Hogan

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The Bottom Line

“Untitled: Thoughts on the Creative Process” is Blaine Hogan’s manifesto to other creative artists in the church. The title comes from that place of dread that anyone who has ever attempted a creative endeavor knows too well: The Blank Page.

What follows is a collection of thoughts derived as I’ve wrestled with my own creative process of filling blank pages, and I now offer them to you.
from the introduction.

That may not sound like a mind-blowingly, powerful beginning, but Blaine delivers. The lessons he has learned are worth your time. The book is great material for reading together with any team at a church or ministry that is creatively telling the Gospel. Blaine’s writing style is approachable and disarming and naturally leads into discussion.

The book is divided into 4 movements:

Movement I: The Work
Movement II: The Inside Out (and other philosophies)
Movement III: Fear, Failure, and Making Mistakes
Movement IV: Worth It

I should note that I read this book on my iPad and, therefore, do not have page numbers for my quotes. The quotes are from each specific movement. Although the book was written in July of 2011, I expect it to be relevant for many years.

Keep thinking! Continue reading.

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Book Review: The Next Christians by Gabe Lyons

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The Bottom Line

The Next Christians: Seven Ways You Can Live the Gospel and Restore the World is a collection of stories of people engaged in creatively exploring the space where Christianity meets culture. Although Gabe Lyons is sharing stories of the next Christians in action, he is also sharing his vision for who the next Christians really are.

I should note that I read this book on my iPad and, therefore, do not have page numbers for my quotes. I’ll designate them broadly with the chapters instead. Keep thinking. Continue reading!

Book Review: The Forgotten Ways by Alan Hirsch

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I did not know anything about Alan Hirsch before reading this book. I participated in a study group that read both this book, “The Forgotten Ways” and the companion, “The Forgotten Ways Handbook“. We took 8 weeks to discuss any implications these ideas might have on our community. (To be clear, the handbook is meant to be a step by step guide to integrating these ideas in your local church community. While it does not offer any additional information, per se, it does help clarify the authors ideas.)

This book is meant to correct a problem. As such, it’s value lies in the three areas of: diagnosing the problem, contrasting an alternative or antidote, and offering a prescription for the future. Each area must be carefully weighed.

Unless otherwise noted, all quotes and page numbers are taken from the main book and not the handbook. Keep thinking. Continue reading!