Story, Signs and Sacred Rhythms: Epilogue

Chris caps of the book with an epilogue that is from his heart to the reader’s, and two very practical appendices for anyone to work through on their own, or as part of a group. I can tell you that I very much appreciate what Chris has to say. He reminds us that we need to foster real imagination in our students, our lives and in our ministries. He reminds us to be wary of diving into any one style or model of ministry and accepting it as the only way to minister to teenagers. He reminds us to take regular times of self-examination and reflection to ensure that we (and our ministry) are following God’s mission. And he reminds us of the importance to trust God and the others He has placed on this earth with us in carrying out the mission of God. Great heart.

Overall, Story, Signs and Sacred Rhythms has been a phenomenal read for me. I had already stumbled onto the Narrative Theology approach to ministry prior to reading this book, and my own experiences brought a lot of validity to what Chris had to share. I do not want to sound too arrogant as to proclaim that this is the only (or even best) way to do ministry, but I would be hard pressed to select another model right now. I really appreciate that Chris reminded me of the good dangers in allowing teenagers to take ownership of their own spiritual formation. I am grateful for his gentle heart and his willingness to remind us that every model is contextual. And above all, I find that I am extremely happy that he did not give a “tried and true” formula for how to craft meetings and gatherings within this framework. While it would have been pretty cool to see how some of this looks in his own ministry context, I feel that it would have weakened his argument to be contextual when implementing this attitude of ministry.

If you are looking for a book that will tell you how to put a new model into practice, with “tried and true” program ideas, then do not waste your time reading this book. But if you want to understand a new (and in my opinion very effective) way of discipling teenagers, understanding that we are only a part of the process they go through, then please pick up Story, Signs and Sacred Rhythms. You should not be disappointed.