Saturday, March 5, 2016
Spiritual Companioning: A Book Review
Among the smiling faces in church on Sunday mornings are those who long for deeper, more genuine relationships within their local congregations--active, intentional relationships that nurture the soul, foster spiritual growth, and move past surface pleasantries into the real joys and heartaches of life. In a society that is increasingly fragmented, they are looking for a place to simply belong--to come home to other people and to God.
Pastors and lay leaders may use the increasingly popular language of spiritual formation and spiritual practices, yet they struggle to germinate a culture of honest conversation about the life of faith. Drawing on decades of experience in spiritual direction, congregational ministry, and seminary teaching, this book offers a clear and rich introduction to the theology and practice of spiritual companioning in the Protestant tradition. Angela Reed, Richard Osmer, and Marcus Smucker explore the topic in a biblically based and historically informed manner and give practical help for cultivating spiritual relationships in congregations and beyond, using stories throughout to illustrate key ideas. will be of interest to seminary professors and students as well as pastors and lay leaders. Study materials are included.
1. Spiritual Companioning as Presence
2. Spiritual Companioning in the Congregation
3. Spiritual Companioning in Spiritual Direction
4. Spiritual Companioning in Small Groups
5. Spiritual Companioning in Everyday Life
6. Spiritual Companioning and the Journey of Life
7. Spiritual Companioning for Leaders
You can read an excerpt of this book here, in PDF format
About The Authors:
(PhD, Princeton Theological Seminary) is assistant professor of practical theology and director of spiritual formation at Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University, in Waco, Texas.
(PhD, Emory University) is Ralph B. and Helen S. Ashenfelter Professor of Mission and Evangelism at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey. He is the author of several books, including and .
(1931-2014; PhD, The Union Graduate School) was known as a pastor, teacher, spiritual advisor, and conflict mediator. He taught at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary and Eastern Mennonite Seminary
I chose to review this book mostly because I wanted to continue my journey into understanding the importance of relationships within the context of the modern church. I am so glad that I read Spiritual Companioning because it really delved into the top of the importance of small groups. Small Group ministry is one that is of the utmost importance in my home church! Small groups include so many different personalities and people at different life stages and that is what makes them so special. Regardless of the reasons for people coming to small groups, this book delves into that in a real, easy to understand manner and would be a great asset to any church library and pastor's library.
I recommend this book and give it a thumbs up!
BUY IT: You can purchase Spiritual Companioning at your favorite Christian book retailer from Baker Academics, a division of Baker Publishing Group
***I received a complimentary copy of this book, courtesy of Graf-Martin Communications Inc., and Baker Publishing Group, for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own and I have not been compensated in any other manner***