The Good and Beautiful God

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 9780830878345
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"God wants me to try harder." "God blesses me when I'm good and punishes me when I'm bad." "God is angry with me." We all have ideas that we tell ourselves about God and how he works in our lives. Some are true—but many are false. James Bryan Smith believes those thoughts determine not only who we are, but how we live. In fact, Smith declares, the most important thing about a person is what they think about God. The path to spiritual transformation begins here. Turning to the Gospels, Smith invites you to put your ideas to the test to see if they match up with what Jesus himself reveals about God. Once you've discovered the truth in Scripture, Smith leads you through a process of spiritual formation that includes specific activities aimed at making these new narratives real in your body and soul as well as your mind. At the end of each chapter you'll find an opportunity for soul training, engaging in spiritual practices that reinforce the biblical messages on your mind and heart. Because the best way to make a complete and lasting change is to go through the material in community, small group discussion questions also accompany each chapter. Those who are leading apprentice groups will also find additional help and opportunities to interact with other leaders at the Apprentice website, www.apprenticeofjesus.com. This deep, loving and transformative book will help you discover the narratives that Jesus lived by—to know the Lord he knew and the kingdom he proclaimed—and to practice spiritual exercises that will help you grow in the knowledge of our good and beautiful God.

The Good and Beautiful God

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: Hachette UK
ISBN: 1444721968
Format: PDF, Docs
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THE GOOD AND BEAUTIFUL GOD is the first book in the Apprentice Series, which along with three other titles forms 'a curriculum for Christlikeness'. THE GOOD AND BEAUTIFUL GOD focuses on the character of God and how we can move into a life of intimacy with him. What we believe about God is of huge importance to our lives: the path to spiritual transformation begins here. Each chapter uncovers the narratives by which Jesus lived, and includes a 'soul-training' exercise to help embed this narrative into our minds, bodies and souls. Each chapter also includes questions that can be used for individual reflection or group discussion.

The Good and Beautiful Community

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 0830861254
Format: PDF
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In this third book in the Apprentice Series, James Bryan Smith helps us know how to live in relationship with others as apprentices of Jesus. "Apprentices of Jesus are not part-time do-gooders," he writes. "They live in continuous contact with the kingdom of God, and are constantly men and women in whom Christ dwells. They do not sometimes tell the truth, sometimes live sacrificially or sometimes forgive. There are myriad opportunities for us to impact the world in which we live." Yet many times we've gotten it wrong, tending to emphasize personal faith over social justice or vice versa. In these pages Jim Smith shows us how to bring spiritual formation and community engagement together, and then once again offers spiritual practices that root new, true narratives about God and the world in our souls. His insight and humility as a fellow learner with us will lead us to live in authentic ways as a good and beautiful community of Christ-followers, shining the light of the Spirit into every relationship.

The Good and Beautiful Life

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 0830878769
Format: PDF
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"I have never met a person whose goal was to ruin his or her life. We all want to be happy, and we want it all of the time." So begins James Bryan Smith in The Good and Beautiful Life. The problem is, he tells us, we have bought into false notions of happiness and success. These self-centered decisions lead us further into the vices that cause ruin: anger, lust, lying, worry and judging. Eventually we find ourselves living a beautifully packaged life of self-destruction. Following the Sermon on the Mount, this follow-up to The Good and Beautiful God guides us to look behind these character flaws and to replace our false beliefs with Jesus' narratives about life in the kingdom of God.

The Kingdom and the Cross

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 083086833X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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We believe a lot of false narratives about the nature of God, things like "God helps those who help themselves"; "God blesses the righteous"; "God might not be out for your good, and you might be missing something." But pastor and professor James Bryan Smith, author of the Apprentice Series, points us to the truth of who God is, revealed by Jesus: A God who loves to help the helpless. A God who doesn't play favorites, whether righteous or unrighteous. A God who is, in his essence, self-sacrificing—even to death—to save a people he loves. In six short chapters, The Kingdom and the Cross zooms in on Christ's work on the cross and what it all means about who God is and how we're to live as his people. A soul training exercise is included for each chapter to help the new true narrative take root in our hearts. And a discussion guide at the end makes this complement to The Apprentice Series perfect for groups to work through together, especially during the season of Lent. Understanding Christ's work on the cross is crucial for any apprentice of Jesus. Here is a resource to help you see—and believe—more fully, that you might live more faithfully in his kingdom.

Fields of Gold

Author: Andy Stanley
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
ISBN: 9780842385404
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This practical and inspirational book explores the principle of sowing and reaping and moves the reader beyond fear and guilt about giving and into confidence, security, and excitement.

Hidden in Christ

Author: James Bryan Smith
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 0830895450
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A Deeper Sort of Devotional Words are powerful. They contain ideas and shape the way we see God, ourselves and all of reality. We're transformed, in particular, by God's Word, and by "the Word," the Logos—Jesus himself—as described by John in the first chapter of his Gospel. Memorizing and studying a passage in depth can offer a deeper sense of the meaning of each word. In this unique introduction to the hidden life in Christ, James Bryan Smith walks readers through a thirty-day immersion in Colossians 3:1-17. Each of the thirty short chapters of this book bring out the main truth of just one word or phrase of this rich passage. You'll also find a very simple daily practice to take up, reflection questions and a guide for five weeks of group discussion. The chapters are short in length, making this book an ideal daily devotional. Since there are thirty chapters, it could be used for a one-month introduction to the hidden life in Christ. Though brief in terms of length, each chapter tries to unearth some very deep truths. For those who have read and practiced the exercises in the Apprentice series, this book will be a helpful refresher as you continue your sacred journey. Each chapter also contains an exercise or practice ("Living into the Truth"), as well as an affirmation that summarizes the main point of the chapter and a written prayer designed to move you deeper into the truths of the Word. In addition, each chapter concludes with a few reflection questions that can be used either by individuals or in a group discussion. The only way to tell a story is to use words. May the words of Colossians 3 become a companion to you as God continues to write your story.

Louder Than Words

Author: Andy Stanley
Publisher: Multnomah
ISBN: 0307563987
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Your character, more than anything else, will impact how much you accomplish in this life. It is more important than your talent, your education, your background, or your network of friends. Andy Stanley helps you chart a course toward becoming a man or woman of character. You'll discover a definition of character that will inspire you for a lifetime, the external and internal benefits of strong character, the six false beliefs behind negative behaviors, and more. Using practical insights, biblical exposition, and engaging stories, Stanley guides you step-by-step in setting the personal goals that will build the foundation for true success. The Secret to a Life with No Regrets How important is your character? It determines everything about you! How much you will accomplish in life, and whether you are worth knowing. How you will respond to success, and how you will weather the inevitable storms of life. This is a book about uncompromised living. It is about choosing every day to be a man or woman of integrity, a person whose actions speak louder than words. Bestselling author Andy Stanley challenges you to become what you were meant to be: a person whose commitment to doing the right thing, whatever the cost, will inspire others and change your world. Story Behind the Book As a pastor, I spend a substantial amount of my time with people who are digging themselves out from personal environmental catastrophes—circumstances that were often years in the making but “took them by surprise.” Another group of people have faced, or are facing, storms of life that are not of their own making, storms created by the character deficits of others—storms that are a natural part of a fallen world. There, in the midst of unjust treatment and seemingly undeserved pain, the true character of a man or woman is revealed. What you see in such moments is what was really there all along. This book is about change. It’s about the process of taking raw materials and molding them, shaping them, and refining them into a finished product. Whether you know it or not, that process is happening in you. Your character, not your accomplishments or acquisitions, determines your legacy. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Disciples Are Made Not Born

Author: Walter A. Henrichsen
Publisher: David C Cook
ISBN: 1434704718
Format: PDF
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"Make Disciples." Jesus' command is clear. But what is a disciple? And how are we to "make" them? Based on decades of experience, this book explains and illustrates the process of disciple-making that Jesus taught and modeled. First published in 1974, its practical, biblical approach has revolutionized the ministry of hundreds of thousands of Christians as they learned how to multiply themselves in the lives of others. Disciple-making is challenging, to be sure. But as we are faithful to Christ's Great Commission, we'll experience the fulfillment that comes from being faithful to the life mission to which God has called us.