The Gospel-Centered Life

From the Coram Deo Blog:

GCLWe are excited to announce that The Gospel-Centered Life is now available for purchase worldwide! To go directly to the ordering/publicity website, click here. For the back-story on GCL, keep reading.

When we planted Coram Deo four years ago, we structured the entire church around missional communities. The ideal missional community consists of a small band of Christians living on mission together and inviting their non-Christian friends to join in conversation and interaction about the gospel of Jesus. This seemed like a really great idea. Until we started doing it. We quickly discovered two significant problems:

  1. Most traditional “church small group” material was written for a Christian audience, and therefore non-Christians relate to it about as well as a cattle rancher relates to vegetarians.
  2. Many Christians have a weak and anemic understanding of the gospel, so asking them to talk about how the gospel is transforming them is like asking a teenage boy band to talk about the finer elements of Mozart’s work.

So in order to shape “gospel DNA” in our church in a way that was accessible to both Christians and non-Christians, Will and I locked ourselves in a room for a couple weeks in the summer of 2007 and wrote a nine-week small-group study called The Gospel-Centered Life. Much of the content for GCL was adapted from older material published by World Harvest Mission which had been instrumental in our own gospel formation. WHM is a mission sending agency in the Reformed tradition that was started by a pastor and missional leader named Jack Miller, who influenced many of our own teachers and mentors (Tim Keller, John Frame, and Steve Childers, just to name a few).

God used GCL to bring about a mini-renewal in our church. New Christians, older Christians, and non-Christians all began to “get” the gospel in deep and powerful ways. People began asking if they could send copies to their parents, their family members, the pastor at the church they grew up in. Which put us in a dilemma, since many of the concepts we used for GCL were the intellectual property of WHM.

So I wrote a cold-turkey letter to WHM asking if they’d be willing to look over the material and consider working with us to publish it. In God’s providence, the folks at WHM were beginning to think about developing some new gospel renewal resources. So we began forging a partnership to edit and re-launch GCL for a wider audience. The crew at WHM has been great to work with, giving us tons of creative control in everything from writing to graphic design. Most importantly, they’ve been careful to preserve the missional ethos of GCL that makes it so accessible to non-Christians and new Christians.

WHM is selling the material as a digital download, which will shrink the overhead (no publishing or warehousing costs) and literally make GCL available worldwide. We’re excited about being part of God’s means to help spur gospel renewal in churches everywhere. Please do what you can to help us get the word out so that churches and Christians everywhere can experience the transforming power of the gospel. The direct link for ordering and publicity is http://www.whm.org/gcl.

Until July 31, you can receive a free sample of GCL via email! Just follow the directions at the WHM site.

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~ by toddbumgarner on June 18, 2009 5:42 am.

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