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Longing for God: Seven Paths of Christian Devotion

3.90  ·  Rating Details  ·  154 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
2010 Golden CanonLeadership Book Award winner! Think of the moment you last experienced God. Do you know him that closely in this moment? Truly experiencing the love of God gives us a taste of his goodness and his love for us, but often those moments are fleeting. We get distracted by life. Our awareness and understanding fade while our longing to experience him that way a ...more
Hardcover, 364 pages
Published April 12th 2009 by IVP Books (first published January 1st 2009)
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Justin Tapp
Sep 18, 2014 Justin Tapp rated it really liked it
The breadth of Christian history, philosophy, and literature covered here make it very close to a "must-read" for any Christian. Good books inspire you to read other, older books and this book excels at that like few others. While I understand that most of the book was researched and written by Beebe (over three years), Foster closes each chapter with his own personal takeaways and a devotional prayer. I highly recommend Foster's book on spiritual disciplines (see my review) before reading this ...more
Beebe and Foster write an interesting book about the history of Christian paths of devotion to God.

They come up with seven based on the lives and intimate experiences with God of over two dozen people:
One: The Right Ordering of Our Love for God

Two: The Spiritual Life as Journey

Three: The Recovery of Knowledge of God Lost in the Fall

Four: Intimacy with Jesus Christ

Five: The Right Ordering of Our Experiences of God

Six: Action and Contemplation

Seven: Diving Ascent

The appendices briefly mention ano
Jul 16, 2009 Tim rated it really liked it
Great book! Think of it as spiritual biography. This volume looks at seven different pathways/frameworks that the church has historically used in understanding the spiritual life in general and spiritual formation in particular. For each pathway three to four historical figures are featured, each among the great names in Christian spirituality throughout the centuries. Gayle Beebe, who wrote most of this volume (and who is an amazing scholar and writer - I look forward to his next book), begins ...more
Aug 23, 2014 Glenn rated it liked it
Really wanted to like this book, Longing for God: Seven Paths of Christian Devotion by Beebe and Foster. I had hoped that it would be a modern day classic explaining the best in spiritual writing and creating within the reader a genuine hunger for God. However, I was disappointed. The book attempts to cover too much ground by only giving us a Cliff Notes version of each spiritual writer's best known work. The writing style becomes redundant with each chapter listing stages of growth for the Chri ...more
Casa Cărţii
Apr 25, 2013 Casa Cărţii rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every christian
Când am început să lucrez la cartea asta, îmi venea greu să cred că există cu adevărat şi că o editură s-a încumetat s-o şi publice. E dificil, fără-ndoială, să promovezi un volum ce conţine referiri la eroi ai creştinătăţii cvasi-necunoscuţi publicului evanghelic.

Dar ei merită cunoscuţi, chiar dacă nu le împărtăşim noi acum toate convingerile, pentru că şi din cauza lor suntem ceea ce suntem azi. Mai mult, tot ceea ce experimentează în prezent bisericile care au senzaţia că inovează şi că aduc
Michael Chen
Feb 16, 2015 Michael Chen rated it it was ok
It's difficult to read when you're perpetually eye-rolling.

The authors write a lot about what different people thought about the spiritual life. But they apparently forgot to ask GOD (through the Bible) what HE thinks about the spiritual life. So, yeah, it’s pretty boring to read a lot of extra-biblical speculation.

(Of course, some of this could be consonant with the Bible. But the authors don't make much effort to root many ideas in the Bible, and much of it seems like arbitrary speculation.)
Aug 31, 2012 Tim rated it really liked it
Written jointly by Beebe and Foster, Beebe did most of the writing, while Foster wrote the reflection pieces that ended each chapter. The book divides spiritual devotion into seven (never discrete) paths and examines three or four different figures from the Christian past who pursued God in that way. As such it provides a small glimpse and opening into particular saints, offering their life and thought as challenges to our day and practice. The summaries pick particular aspects of thought (hard ...more
Heather Tomlinson
What is good about this book, is that it is a very ecumenical tour around some of the great Christian thinkers of old, with a wide range of different Christian backgrounds. Foster is picking out aspects of their work that fits with his interest of spiritual growth - there is a surprising amount of harmony between all these different people. Theologically they would be worlds apart, which perhaps suggests that our spiritual walks are more similar than they appear.
So, it is an interesting book. B
Jan 05, 2016 Georgiana rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion, audiobook
I can't say enough good things about this book. The only downside is that my to-read list has grown by leaps and bounds, thanks to all the other authors I now have to investigate further.
Dec 24, 2015 Chris rated it it was amazing
Great book. Very encouraging and spurred me to help start a book group with young men from church to read through spiritual classics.
Nick Benson
Sep 03, 2013 Nick Benson rated it liked it
OK but I'd hoped for more. It's a description of various spiritualities and the approaches of those associated with them; perhaps inevitably, given the ground covered, it soon begins to feel a mechanical listing of stages in our relationship with God. I'm not sure how possible it is to do this helpfully when dealing with other people - attempting this type of analysis of friendship with God seems to great a stretch.
Mar 21, 2016 Janice rated it it was amazing
This book is so full of wisdom, and information. The authors look back through Christian history, giving us small summaries of the thinking and beliefs of some of the most significant thinkers and theologians in Christian history, from the very earliest times, and from those grounded in reason, to the great mystics. Regardless of a person's own belief system, there is much to think about, and in inspired by, here.
Jun 05, 2009 Jane rated it it was amazing
This is a life changing book. Foster delves into the lives and influences of seven paths of Chirstian devotion. He explores such saints as Augustine, Blasie Pascal, Thomas Merton, Martin Luther and many of the Desert Fathers. I am loving this book. Humilty is the trait that stands out the most as I read.
Sep 15, 2015 Stephen rated it it was ok
If you want Christian history in brief then yes, it was good. However, it's not an easy read by any means and indiscriminately delves into those with questionable theology without much comment.

I finished this book out of principle more so than desire to read it.
Sep 21, 2015 Maria rated it really liked it
Enjoyed the book. Made me think about the different ways of worshipping God. Will probably have to read again as there was a fair amount of information to digest.
Really helped by the summing up at the end of each chapter and the accompanying prayer.
Mar 28, 2011 pianogal rated it liked it
Interesting's really more of a Cliff's Notes version of the writings than the writings themselves - which was disappointing. It did, however, give me a good place to start to expand my reading and the writers insights were helpful.
Jun 14, 2010 Irm rated it it was amazing
I really like this book because of the mini-summaries of some of the key Christians through history from Julian of Norwich to St. Augustine to Pseudo-Dionysus to St. Benedict. Excellent.
Jun 14, 2013 Tom rated it liked it
Lots of information on important people. Very formulaic. Lots of lists. We,do not really get a good feel for the people the authors discuss. The lists and charts got very, very old.
Taylor Storey
Apr 16, 2013 Taylor Storey rated it it was ok
Didn't finish this the concept, but somehow didnt grab me like I hoped. Maybe I'll come back to it in the future. I'll still use it as a reference.
Cindy Snead
Mar 11, 2012 Cindy Snead rated it really liked it
Last section seemed most applicable. I would definitely want to read this with a group.
Oct 03, 2011 Kendall rated it liked it
The tale of two books...I Ike some of it a lot and other parts not at all.
May 29, 2013 Knightgina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
very good giving overviews of wide range of spirituality.
Patricia Elliott
Mar 07, 2013 Patricia Elliott rated it liked it
enjoyed especially the look at historical church figures.
Larry Lenard
Jan 21, 2013 Larry Lenard rated it it was amazing
Excellent primer on the devotional life.
Apr 10, 2009 Larry rated it it was amazing
awesome, deep, life-changing
Apr 02, 2012 Samantha rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
Liz Toone
Liz Toone marked it as to-read
May 20, 2016
K Rae
K Rae marked it as to-read
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Lydia is currently reading it
May 05, 2016
Katie marked it as to-read
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Richard J. Foster is the author of several bestselling books, including Celebration of Discipline, Streams of Living Water, and Prayer, which was Christianity Today's Book of the Year and the winner of the Gold Medallion Award from the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association. He is the founder of Renovaré, an intrachurch movement committed to the renewal of the Church in all her multifaceted ...more
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