Renovation of the Church: What Happens When a Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation

Renovation of the Church What Happens When a Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation Copastors Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken tell the story of how God took their thriving consumer oriented church and transformed it into a modest congregation of unformed believers committed to the grow

  • Title: Renovation of the Church: What Happens When a Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation
  • Author: Kent Carlson Mike Lueken Dallas Willard
  • ISBN: 9780830835461
  • Page: 444
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copastors Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken tell the story of how God took their thriving, consumer oriented church and transformed it into a modest congregation of unformed believers committed to the growth of the spirit even when it meant a decline in numbers.As Kent and Mike found out, a decade of major change is not easy on a church Oak Hills Church, from the pastoral staCopastors Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken tell the story of how God took their thriving, consumer oriented church and transformed it into a modest congregation of unformed believers committed to the growth of the spirit even when it meant a decline in numbers.As Kent and Mike found out, a decade of major change is not easy on a church Oak Hills Church, from the pastoral staff to the congregation, had to confront addiction to personal ambition, resist consumerism and reorient their lives around the teachings of Jesus Their renewed focus on spiritual formation over numerical growth triggered major changes in the content of their sermons, the tenor of their worship services, and the reason for their outreach They lost members.But the health and spiritual depth of their church today is a testimony of God s transforming work and enduring faithfulness to the people he loves.Honest and humble, this is Kent and Mike s story of a church they love, written to inspire and challenge other churches to let God rewrite their stories as well Read it for the church you love.

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      Posted by:Kent Carlson Mike Lueken Dallas Willard
      Published :2018-06-14T13:17:55+00:00

    One thought on “Renovation of the Church: What Happens When a Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation”

    1. Kent & Mike were 'successful' at growing their church until they started realizing how their method for increase undermined the call to discipleship as they catered to consumer culture. In this book they share how they intentional re-envisioned church toward spiritual formation and the effects it had, both negative (people leaving) and positive (people growing). This book asks the convicting question, "What kind of growth are you looking for?"

    2. Carlson and Lueken are highly successful mega-church pastors who find themselves in the rat race of church success. The demands of feeding the weekly performance monster is sucking the life out of them.In one characteristically transparent passage they write about a conversation following a Sunday morning service. From a performance perspective, we had put together a first rate product. The artistic elements were very compelling and technically excellent. There were times when people were laughi [...]

    3. I do not award a book with a 5-star rating casuallyhold onto your hats people. There's a lot in my brain concerning this book that I wish I could translate from thought to word. I'm afraid I will fall so short in communicating what I want to.I am very glad Woodland Hills Church selected this book as supplemental reading for their Exploring Sojourner's class. This book in particular has made corporate discipleship simultaneously more approachable and longed for. The specific example of a large, " [...]

    4. This book is a combination of hit and miss. On the positive side, the authors have wonderful and welcome insights into the differences between a body of believers centered on formation and one centered on an "attractional model" of congregational life, as well as honest and genuine offerings of the messy transition from one to the other. On the other hand, the authors both seem to display a sense of faith formation that is young and at times immature and their hierarchical, top-down approach to [...]

    5. This is a book I have been waiting for someone to write for a very long time. When I was preparing for my senior year of college, I was required to spend a summer doing a ministry internship. Although I'm thankful that I had the opportunity to do that as part of a good ministry in a good church, that summer left me disillusioned with ministry. I returned to my senior year at Asbury hungry for a way of doing ministry that led to something more, and that hunger, along with relationships I was fort [...]

    6. This was a humble, thoughtful book written about what happens when a church moves from a consumeristic, seeker-centered approach to church growth to a gospel-centered, spiritual transformation approach. The authors deal frankly with their own mistakes and weaknesses as they pastored this church through a huge paradigm shift. I appreciated their honesty and their chief desire to seek God first as the mission of the church.

    7. Just what a pastor looking to implement spiritual formation language and practices in the local churchIf you’re a follower of Dallas Willard and are as moved as many people are to integrate his teachings and way of living in the kingdom into your church, this is an incredibly inspiring resource. Honest, practical, insightful.

    8. I read Renovation Of The Church against the backdrop of resigning as pastor of my church. Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken brought me to much introspection and healing, in the face of that transition, with their theology of church. I identified with their struggles and could feel the pain of their transition. A few times their words stopped me in my tracks and brought tears to my eyes as they spoke straight to the wounds in my heart.After eight years at our church it was becoming clear that our visi [...]

    9. Some of my favorite non-fiction, non-Christian books are "looks under the hood" of movements, organizations, and individuals. Books such as Moneyball by Michael Lewis and The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell take an objective look at situations and people who have changed the landscape of their particular field or context. Their formula is fairly simple - "With odds against them, how did Company X become a trend setter and revolutionize their industry."Unfortunately, Christian literature lacks [...]

    10. I recently finished reading Renovation of the Church: What Happens When A Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation by Ken Carlson & Mike Lueken, with the staff at our church, and it was an outstanding read.The book is about a church that is in the process of continual evolution coming out of the 90′s where many churches took on a similar model of ministry based on the strategies and values of Willow Creek. What I appreciated about the authors, is that they didn’t knock Willow Creek or [...]

    11. Dallas Willard in the forward makes the observation that "we [in the dominant form of church life today] have trained Christians to be demanding consumers, not disciples it was this issue of consumerism that brought the conflicting values of external success and authentic spiritual formation into such sharp contrast." (p9) and how they sought instead for "disciples of Jesus, not just avid consumers of religious goods and services." (p10-11).From the get go, I appreciated the humility of the auth [...]

    12. This is a very interesting book. A complete indictment of much of mainstream, contemporary Christianity and call to greater discipleship. I like the theology of vocation and they certainly support that. At times I felt they had a reverse theology of the cross - "we are growing smaller so we must be more faithful than those large, worldly churches. The smaller we are, the more faithful we are." I don't know what denomination the authors were, and having no foundation is a danger for a non-denomin [...]

    13. Carlson and Lueken are courageous pastors to be so transparent about their decade-long journey of finding the balance between pastoring beleivers and reaching the lost. Every question they wrestled with was grounds for deep reflection within my own heart, and as I would often find myself discouraged by the instricacies of this balance, I would again be encouraged by their journey. They don't claim to have all the answers. In fact, they are very humble in their claim to any sort of knowledge. The [...]

    14. "What Happens When a Seeker Church Discovers Spiritual Formation" is the by line. This is the story by two pastors of a Sacramento CA church that decided to intentionally move in this direction. Moving from 'consumerism' approach to programing they now emphasize thoughtful programing that helps disciples become more 'apprenticed to Jesus'.Attendance dwindled from 1400 to 500 but the core is larger and more focused on the advancement of the kingdom of God where the disciples are. No more feeding [...]

    15. I am (was) a member of the Oak Hills Church which these two pastors call home. I saw this transformation and while I can certainly understand their reasonings for it and even appreciate the need for some change as a Christian, I am more and more drawn to the realization that they have missed the mark entirely.Throughout the book they preach the need to look inside and find spiritual formation; to fight against the consumerism of the modern church. And while I can applaud their words, the fact of [...]

    16. I read this one because Jim Herrington recommended it. In some ways I wish he hadn't. It cuts a little too deep for some of us "lifers" who have spent our entire lives doing church to try to get more people "in the door". (Which, by the way, was never something Jesus actually did. He had a funny way of having "membership drives" - that is, sending many pretend-followers away in favor of sinners who were drawn to his deeply passionate message of Grace and a new way of living called The Kingdom li [...]

    17. We in the dominant form of church life today have trained Christians to be demanding consumers, not disciples.Basic Questions• What is the Good News?• What are we called to do in response to it?• What is the church?• How does the church respond to a consumer-driven society?Their answers: The Kingdom of God is now. The Gospel as an invitation to be an apprentice of Jesus.If Christ is King, everything, quite literally, every thing and every one, has to be re-imagined, re-configured, re-ori [...]

    18. What does it look like to turn a megachurch into something smaller, slower, and more quiet? Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken show us in their book Renovation of the Church. They relate the story of Oak Hills Church in Folsom, California. As the pastors at Oak Hills, they resided over the growth of one of the fastest growing churches in the region. But it wasn't long before they felt God was leading them in another, smaller direction.Their book explains the ups and downs that Oak Hills went through w [...]

    19. Excellent story of the intentional vision shift from being a seeker driven church to being a spiritual formation focused church. The authors graciously did so without bashing their seeker targeted heritage of their congregation. The authors honestly share both their successes and their foibles. I do wonder if they could have done more to provide spiritual formation for new believers at the level and in a form that they can digest it, if the congregation would not have lost as many invested peopl [...]

    20. This book is both accessible yet substantive. It offers a brief overview of the perils of a consumer culture that the church has tried to capitalize on with the negative side effect of stunting the spiritual growth of millions of Christians.The authors provide the story of their journey from establishing a seeker church, to discovering its shortcomings, to transforming the congregation into one that focuses on discipleship and spiritual formation. They offer an honest assessment of their discove [...]

    21. This quick book tells the story of two pastors who led a growing mega-church in California, only to realize that they were not seeing people (including themselves) become more Christlike. Over the course of a decade, they shifted the focus of the church to one of spiritual formation rather than a seeker-sensitive model. This books captures their story--both the successes and failures--as they moved through this decade long transition, and it gives the reader insights for how local congregations [...]

    22. As I finish this book, I am left with a feeling of sadness. I understand where these 2 men are coming from in their desire to avoid consumer Christianity, and do not question their hearts, but while they admit to making many mistakes in their journey to change their church from seeker friendly to a formational church, with emphasis on the spiritual disciplines, I think they have truly missed the boat. You cannot dictate transformation, and in forcing ~ 1700 people to follow a path foreign and un [...]

    23. I had planned a hiatus from reading recent books about church life as I was finding most to be recycled ideas in new wrapping paper. Then recently I was given a copy of this book about a church I am somewhat familiar with. One of the authors is a long time acquaintance and in their early years the church did support us as missionaries in the Philippines. I knew some of their story but not in detail. They offer a bold deconstruction of consumerist Christianity but tell their own confrontation of [...]

    24. Two pastors talk about their movement from a seeker-sensitive church model to a church model of spiritual formation and discipleship. The book is clearly written and the author's discussion is done humbly, acknowledging their mistakes along the way, with some good insight into the success-by-flash and numbers pastor and the consumer-driven model of many American church-goers. The book is long on diagnosis, I needed less convincing than they provided, and is briefer on cure. I liked their hints a [...]

    25. A courageous group of pastors transition their church away from the seeker-sensitive model to a model more conducive to spiritual formation and discipleship. The pastors are completely transparent, so all of the messy details are here. You will learn much from the struggles and trials they faced. Interesting read.

    26. Kent Carson and Mike Lueken (co-pastors of Oak Hills Community Church in Sacramento) tell the story of their congregation's move from "seeker" to "spiritual formation." It hasn't been easy, but it's been good.

    27. Loved this book. Didn't agree with all the ideas, but loved the authors' courage and honesty. They have a lot of important things to say to us about consumerism in the church. The first 100 pages are fantastic the last 80 don't hold up as well.

    28. I heard the story from the mouths of the authors and still enjoyed reading the book. I recommend for pastors to read chapter 12 and the epilogue first, then chapters 1-11, and then re-read chapter 12 and the epilogue.

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