From the author of Reimagining Church comes an essential guide that provides practical, effective tools for finding vibrant Christian communities. Driven by a passion for the body of Christ, Frank Viola has written some of today's most authoritative and celebrated works on the growing home, organic, and missional church movements. Now Viola shares practical keys to a healthy and successful church plant.
Viola contends that many congregations today are struggling to survive, not because of bad planning, but poor planting. He presents an essential guide for starting and nourishing organic churches in any culture. Drawing from both Scripture and a wealth of experience, Viola offers real-world tools, insights, and practical suggestions so churches won't just grow, but thrive.
©2009 Frank Viola (P)2009 christianaudio.com
Been listening to and reading books for more than 30 years.... I should eat more though, as my pants seem to0 big now.
My father first recommended Frank's books to me. As a long time pastor, Dad had often come across with a self-righteous air and judgmental attitude. In the past few years, something has softened in him, which made me a bit more open to his editorials about what would "fix" me. I resisted his recommendations to read Franks books because I assumed it would tell me what I was doing wrong... Wow, was I wrong.
This book was the third of Frank Viola's that I inhaled. I read the first, Pagan Christianity, to pick it apart and shut dad up. Surprisingly, it fit where I was perfectly, as I had less-than-little appreciation for self-righteous-performance-driven "churches." This spirited fact-based skewering of the practice of church since the third century begged me to ask, "What did Paul and the apostles actually teach and practice when they had "Church."
The second book I listened to was "The untold story of the New Testament Church" lead me through the epistles in a way that allowed me to begin to answer that question. As I reread the New Testement in order and context, I was lit up with passion for my faith for the first time since I was 4. My gut feelings had been verified and the scriptures showed the better path. Now, how could I experience "Church" ...for real....today?
This book, "Finding Organic Church," began to answer that question for me. It sparked a hunger to meet with and fellowship with other christians as never before. I had always loved Jesus, I just could hardly stomach Christians. This book gave me a way to love them, and allow God to love me through them.
As a follow up, I still didn't really understand my faith. Oh, I knew all the "truths." I was a good PK after all (Pastor's Kid). My father and I have since found an amazing path of freedom that started with Roman's 6-8, exploded with the Colossians 1-3, lead us up a mountain of love with truths within Frank's books "From Eternity to Here" and "Jesus Manifesto", and taught us the art of yielding (instead of figuring) with Watchman Nee's "Normal Christian Life."
I didn't expect this path. I fought it hard. I was a know-it-all: a passive-agressive PK, well versed in resisting guilt-trip theology and manipulative religiosity. I found none of that on this journey. Now I am something completely new. I sincerely hope my experience encourages you to seek something deeper. Jeremiah 29:11-14. Wow Frank, thank you for being such a vital trail blazer for me.
Well read and kept my interest even for the style book it is. Many times Informational books are quite dull, not this one, it's very well read and an easy listen book. I wanted the hard copy though to catch all of the references.
I was very relieve to find this book as we left the traditional church several years ago in search of more depth and more "real" gospel. This book spoke what I was feeling and seeking and I was amazed that he knew just what we are going through....refreshing to find the answer to my nagging question. "is there more meaning to church? There's got to be more life and more depth!?!" There is...now it's about getting started with what God was already telling us.
The simplicity of an organic church is profound. A very practical book. I don't agree with every detail but for the most part, it's definitely a FRESH way to be a church. The author did't address the question of "evangelism" and group size, as in, what if the group grows to too large? A great read for every Christian.
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