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Subtitle in pre-publication: How I lost my faith and found it through science.
From the host of the popular podcasts, The Liturgists Podcast and Ask Science Mike, a story of having faith, losing it, and finding it again through science—revealing how the latest in neuroscience, physics, and biology help us understand God, faith, and ourselves. Forty-four percent of Americans will go through a major faith transition in their lives. And now, with church attendance on the decline and increasing cultural independence from Christian social norms, this trend has reached a tipping point: the fastest growing religion in America is "none." Mike McHargue understands the pain of unraveling belief. In Finding God in the Waves, Mike tells the story of how his Evangelical faith dissolved into atheism as he studied the Bible, a crisis that threatened his identity, his friendships, and even his marriage. Years later, Mike was standing on the shores of the Pacific Ocean when a bewildering, seemingly mystical moment motivated him to take another look. But this time, it wasn't theology or scripture that led him back to God—it was science. Full of insights about the universe, as well as deeply personal reflections on our desire for certainty and meaning, Finding God in the Waves is a vital exploration of the possibility for knowing God in an age of reason, and a signpost for where the practice of faith is headed in a secular age. Among other revelations, we learn what brain scans reveal about what happens when we pray; how fundamentalism affects the psyche; and how God is revealed not only in scripture, but in the night sky, in subatomic particles, and in us. From the Hardcover edition.
'Through the lens of neuroscience, McHargue makes his case for valuing religion not for its factual explanatory power but rather for its ability to give meaning to human existence . . . For those who fear science will rob them of both God and Christian community, this work may offer much-needed hope that Christianity and science can coexist.' -Publishers Weekly 'I thoroughly recommend this book. It is written with humility, honesty and a liberal sprinkling of humour ... not only thought-provoking, but also a jolly good read ... A review does not do it justice, so I suggest you read the book!' - Methodist Recorder What do you do when God dies? It's a question facing millions today, as science reveals a universe that's self-creating, western culture departs from its Christian heritage and the idea of God begins to seem implausible at best and barbaric at worst. Mike McHargue understands the pain of unravelling belief. In Finding God in the Waves, Mike tells the story of how his evangelical faith dissolved into atheism as he studied the Bible, a crisis that threatened his identity, his friendships and even his marriage. Years later, Mike was standing on the shores of the Pacific Ocean when a bewildering, seemingly mystical moment motivated him to take another look. But this time, it wasn't theology or scripture that led him back to God - it was science. In Finding God in the Waves, 'Science Mike' draws on his personal experience to tell the unlikely story of how science led him back to faith. Among other revelations, we learn what brain scans reveal about what happens when we pray; how fundamentalism affects the psyche; and how God is revealed not only in scripture, but in the night sky, in subatomic particles, and in us. For the faithful and sceptic alike, Finding God in the Waves is a powerful, page-turning read about belonging, life's biggest questions, and the hope of knowing God in an age of science.
"We are all creators. Whether or not we create is not up to us. We are human, and creating is what we do. Every interaction, movement, and decision is creativity at work. We are all artists. We all order creation around us into the world that we want to make."--Michael Gungor In The Crowd, the Critic, and the Muse, Michael Gungor takes an uncompromising--and humorous--look at our creative selves and the world that we have fashioned around us. Through story and reflection, Gungor shows how our deepest beliefs and assumptions about the universe affect how we order creation. Our art and our humanity are inextricably entwined. Surveying pop songs and church services, fine art and movies, Gungor shows what these works of creation reveal about us--for better and worse--and offers a powerful argument for why we can do better. Art is like fruit, and if we want to improve the quality of our creative output, we must tend not only to the fruit, but to the tree, its roots, and the soil that it is planted in. To become free as creators, we must not simply try harder, we must become different. Gungor argues that this kind of change demands both an awareness of one's own cultural conditioning and a healthy degree of faith, doubt, hope and love. An award-winning, globetrotting musician, Gungor also reveals his personal journey as an artist and creator, a tale of moving from innocence to wisdom, from simplicity to complexity and back again, a tale of leaving home and returning in a new, better, and more creative way.
Recounting his own struggle with doubt and depression, Matt Rogers explores the question of how, in a world of suffering, we can call God good. This challenging question can manifest itself as a conspiracy of doubt and depression, so that our emotions and our intellect come under attack. Will God deliver us through this distressing journey? Market/Audience Christians struggling with doubt or depression Counselors Pastors Endorsement "A needed book, beautifully written, from a promising new writer." - Brian McLaren, author/activist "Matt Rogers has something to say, and he says it in a way no one has." - Tony Jones, author of The New Christians "Matt Rogers shows us throughout this compelling narrative that we are complex beings physical and emotional as well as spiritual. As Rogers points out again and again, our theology should line up with this complexity and thus address the whole person." - Gerald L. Sittser, Whitworth University Features and Benefits Journal entries show the impact of doubt and depression on the experience of a Christian in crisis Discussion questions help you process the challenging questions in this book together with others Pastoral wisdom joins with experience to address a serious question of faith Unique in offering a male perspective on depression
The evolution of American spirituality over the past fifty years is the subject of Robert Wuthnow's engrossing new book. Wuthnow uses in-depth interviews and a broad range of resource materials to show how Americans, from teenagers to senior citizens, define their spiritual journeys. His findings are a telling reflection of the changes in beliefs and lifestyles that have occurred throughout the United States in recent decades. Wuthnow reconstructs the social and cultural reasons for an emphasis on a spirituality of dwelling (houses of worship, denominations, neighborhoods) during the 1950s. Then in the 1960s a spirituality of seeking began to emerge, leading individuals to go beyond established religious institutions. In subsequent chapters Wuthnow examines attempts to reassert spiritual discipline, encounters with the sacred (such as angels and near-death experiences), and the development of the "inner self." His final chapter discusses a spirituality of practice, an alternative for people who are uncomfortable within a single religious community and who want more than a spirituality of endless seeking. The diversity of contemporary American spirituality comes through in the voices of the interviewees. Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, and Native Americans are included, as are followers of occult practices, New Age religions, and other eclectic groups. Wuthnow also notes how politicized spirituality, evangelical movements, and resources such as Twelve-Step programs and mental health therapy influence definitions of religious life today. Wuthnow's landmark book, The Restructuring of American Religion (1988), documented the changes in institutional religion in the United States; now After Heaven explains the changes in personal spirituality that have come to shape our religious life. Moreover, it is a compelling and insightful guide to understanding American culture at century's end.
"Our millennial children, as well as nonchurchgoing millennials, are both the church's greatest challenge and its most exciting new opportunity." —John Seel, PhD Warning: There is a fundamental frame of reference shift in American society happening right now among young adults. You may think of this group as millennials—those born between 1980 and 2000—but millennials resist this label for good reason: the national narrative on them is pejorative, patronizing, and just plain wrong. Here's what we do know: Of Americans with a church background, 76 percent are described as "religious nones" or unaffiliated—and it's the fastest growing segment of the population. Close to 40 percent of millennials fit this religious profile. Roughly 80 percent of teens in evangelical church high school youth groups will abandon their faith after two years in college. It's unlikely that the evangelical church can survive if it is uniformly rejected by millennials, and yet: Millennial pastors and youth ministers are disempowered; their perspective is often not taken seriously by senior church leadership. Most millennial research is framed in categories rejected by millennials; that is, left-brained, analytical communication is lost on right-brained, intuitive millennials. Evangelicals' bias toward rational left-brained thinking makes the church seem tone-deaf. What's next? Read on. John Seel suggests survival strategies—communication on-ramps for genuine human connection with the next generation. It can be done.

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