Imbi & I met Steve this past June, in Idaho. He’d flown in from New Zealand for an Allelon event – we’d arrived in Boise after a sixteen hour layover in Toronto from a month in Kenya. Our bodies were in slightly different time zones – but we still managed to spend some time together as we were all staying here.
Steve was (and is) a blast. Brilliant, funny and a gifted leader. Read his blog. He’s also written a book that I have yet to read (I forgot to pick it up in Boise) but that Scot McKnight and others have raved about, the Out of Bounds Church.
…I’ve found a book that no one seems to talk much about but which is a very fine book — and when I was wandering around trying to find the best stuff on the emerging movement last year, I wish I had read this book. Steve Taylor, The Out of Bounds Church? Learning to Create a Community of Faith in a Culture of Change.
In a sense this is a different kind of book like that of Gibbs and Bolger; if theirs describes and analyzes the big picture, Taylor’s explores thematically local communties. A big idea in the book is how the emerging movement is like a DJ: mixing elements of culture in order to understand God and the gospel better. He contends the two — gospel and culture — are always together.
I’ll tell you why I think this is a good book: it is theology emerging from praxis and praxis emerging from theological reflection, and both emerging in and out of local contexts, and each of these three items emerging out of serious engagement with culture and philosophy. Now if that doesn’t get your dander up, nothing will — and that means you’re probably not emerging.
The flight-full Kiwi’s book is being blogged for a week by Pernell Goodyear (a name that really should be that of one of the good guys on Heroes). Pernell is just down the highway from us in the beautiful (except for the steel mills) city of Hamilton. And one of the active voices in the Canadian Emerging/Missional conversation, Resonate. Along with other posts, Pernell has an interview with Steve on his blog and has done a podcast with Jordon Cooper on the book (which will be up today). Check out the ongoing conversation at Pernell’s blog.