Living Faithfully

Living Faithfully: Following Christ in everyday life
John Pritchard, SPCK, 2013

£9.99 (Approx)
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

The faith we proclaim on Sunday is just as relevant to the rest of the week … We need to close the gap between sacred and secular, and that’s what this book aims to help us do. Each chapter identifies an issue, explores how we might respond and encourages us – through practical ideas, stories, humour, quotes, Scripture, questions and prayer – to seek to make a difference.

What do you get and how?

Book, with suggestions for group interaction at the end of each chapter. Topics gathered under sections: Facing myself; Facing the world; Facing others; Facing the future. Covers subjects such as guidance, temptation, health, politics, justice, marriage … 21 topics. From SPCK

Who is it for?

Adult Christians, beginning and growing

Cost?

£9.99, ebook also available.

Review

  • What is the overall quality of the material?

    Well-produced book with clear font.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    This is a self-confessed ‘starter kit' for thinking about big issues, which aims to stimulate thought and discussion. Each chapter/theme set out in same format, helpfully presenting the problem, some suggested approaches, and what we could do differently.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    Suggestions for group responses and discussion at the end of each chapter. These are creative and designed to interact with the previous material – which each member would presumably read in advance. It would depend on group as to how long a group meeting would take. 45-60 minutes perhaps? The questions do not have obvious answers so discussion should be good.

    Who could lead it?

    Leadership could be shared among the group.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    Each chapter is self-contained, clear, accessible, honest, challenging and often humourous.

    How good is any digital material?

    N/A

    How much prep will I have to do?

    Reading of chapter, some materials for the closing prayer section.

    Is there website support? Links?

    N/A

    Is it dated?

    Very relevant in 2015 . . .

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Discussion is the main interaction, with well-crafted questions that would provoke engagement.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    Reading, talking, praying, and some active responses. Unlikely to be suitable for groups of low-literacy.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    Designed for adult Christians who want to wrestle with some big questions of how to live and respond as Christians in our challenging world. Unlikely to be suitable for groups of low-literacy.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    This would come out in discussion, but prayer responses are more personal.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    A fifth or so directly, and Christian doctrine underpins the rest.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    Allows for reflection on a relevant passage. Most chapters engage with the passage as part of the following question section as well.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    Questions clearly aim to do this in a thoughtful and challenging way, leaving the group to work out appropriate ‘answers' .

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    John Pritchard is a Church of England bishop, but there are only a few assumptions of Anglicanism, and most material is relevant to most Christians in the West. Some may want more robust attitude to some issues, but discussion could open that up anyway.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    Wide-ranging and ambitious interaction with the big questions of life, faith and culture. Good starting places for difficult issues. Very realistic.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    Chapter material aims to start where people are at, and stimulate creative ways forward for authentic Christian responses.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    Encourages deep connections between faith, ourselves and the world we live in.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    Essentially, profoundly, creatively, honestly and with hope.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Dealt with directly in chapter ‘Sharing faith'. As per the rest of the book, encourages honesty and creative ways ahead.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    Chapter on ‘Building community', and others in the section Facing others. Encouragement to get involved in imaginative and appropriate ways.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    Facing the world and Facing the future deal with these well, with unflinching realism, but overarching, God-based hope.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Implicit in Sharing faith and outlook on world, from caring for the planet, to health, and assumption that mission is a good thing.

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