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The Eternal Current: How a Practice-Based Faith Can Save Us from Drowning

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  598 ratings  ·  99 reviews
A call for Christians to move past the shallows of idealized beliefs and into a deeper, more vibrant, beatitude-like faith rooted in sacred practices and intimate experiences with God.

When the limits of his own faith experience left him feeling spiritually empty, Niequist determined God must have a wider vision for worship and community.

In his search, Aaron discovered
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published August 7th 2018 by Waterbrook Press
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Aimee Yes, there are a few short example liturgies in the book. The book also references the author's website where you can access a recorded liturgy, video…moreYes, there are a few short example liturgies in the book. The book also references the author's website where you can access a recorded liturgy, video examples of what a practice based church service might look like, and other resources.(less)
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Rachel A.  Dawson
Sep 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-rad-reads, faith
I can’t quite put words around just how much I loved this book from @aaronieq — it spoke right to the heart of what’s been stirring in my heart lately about faith, church, spiritual discipline, and following Jesus wholeheartedly. It’s practical but beautiful, compelling and complex but also so simple and tangible, inspiring and informative. He has lead by example with what these practices look like, and he paints such a rich picture here of what it looks like to diversify our faith to truly beco ...more
Kaytee Cobb
Jan 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shook. Niequist changes everything with this simple and straightforward book. He calls us to open our hearts to the beauty of all traditions that worship God, instead of whatever denomination we attend. He reminds us that churches should be equipping us to be like/be closer to Christ, not JUST praising. That the sermon isn't the point. There is so much to be gleaned from this text. I'll need to purchase it and read it again and again. I'm also getting out my book of Common Prayer.
Aug 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Loved the premise of the book, that faith is intended to be a way of life as opposed to a laundry list of beliefs; that we are invited to participate rather than assent to faith.

However; these are things that most people growing up in mainline traditions take for granted. It bugs me when evangelical pastors "discover" aspects of faith that have been true for centuries and act as if they've had this great spiritual revelation. A well written book, but if you're going to publish a book of spiritua
Feb 04, 2020 rated it liked it
A good book but there were a few things that annoyed me. The author talked about practice based faith but only leaned on liturgical practices. I dont know if it's so much the practice as it is the mindset of the individual who is practicing. I also think some people would be tuned out if they switched out 3 songs, a hymn, and a 40 minute talk with 4 readings, the eucharist, and a short homily. I wish he talked more about reconciling his old practices than talking about how great his new ones are ...more
Jon Stephens
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
The truth is, many of us who have grown up in the church have become uninterested in and uninspired by a weekly gathering that predictably consists of 4 songs, a set of announcements, and a 30 minute sermon, most of which you simply watch as an observer. Many feel like there must be more when it comes to participating in a church gathering. Well, things can be different. Our gatherings can be more engaging, they can be more diverse, they can be richer, and they can be far more healing and danger ...more
Sarah Poling
Jun 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: launch
This is a book that made me think, that I want to review/re-read- list quotes that I highlighted- and really process, examine, and enhance how ask God what practices would help me know Him better, not just believing him Him, but living a life that reflects and practices beliefs moment by probably pushes me from really liking it- to finding it amazing. Many books I read seem like a moment, hour by hour, season by season. And that makes it a GREAT book in my mind, and review, or for someone else, ...more
Aug 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
I jumped at the chance to read a review copy of The Eternal Current written by Aaron Niequist. It did take me a while to read in the end but that’s only because I misplaced my Kindle for a while. I really think there is so much for us in Northern Ireland to learn from in these pages and also from the experience of The Practice community which Aaron has led and developed over a number of years.

Having followed online the development of The Practice, under the auspices of Willow Creek Community Ch
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-purchase
I listened to Aaron Niequist read the audiobook, (thanks, hoopla!) and it's very good in this format. Since I know I retain more from reading a hard copy, I will probably buy the "book-book," and be more easily able to flip around to sections I'd like to consider some more.
This book is thoughtful, humble, hopeful, and I was encouraged and challenged.
Sometimes it was like listening to a kid who just discovered or learned about some long-standing thing like gravity - they're so excited to explai
John Loppnow
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
After arriving home from my trip to Korea this book was waiting for me and I couldn't wait to start reading it.

Merely one chapter into the book and I'm hooked. I think Aaron embodies and speaks for many in this season of the church at large. His representation of Jesus' invitation to join God in His kingdom is refreshing. A move from only belief to full participation in the stream of God's goodness is inspiring and encouraging.

As I read more I'll update my review.

I highly recommend any pastor, c
Kristi McClellan
Jul 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is the perfect combination of thought-provoking information and practical encouragement. Aaron Niequist shares his own personal journey as he moved into a practice-based faith and gently encourages the reader to do the same. Aaron provides us with not only the "why" behind transitioning into different spiritual disciplines, but also details about the "how," so that the reader is not left wondering how to incorporate these practices into her/his life. The author also asks the reader to ...more
Tess Duncan
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you want to plunge into a refreshing current to sweep you towards Jesus, this book is for you.
Christie Thomas
Apr 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is such a thoughtful, well-researched, and well-lived book. It echoed a lot of ideas I've sensed in my own faith walk for the past decade, but said much better! Other similar books are Sacred Pathways (Gary Thomas), and The Sacred Way (Tony Jones) if you're looking for other helpful books to read after this one!
Julia Champagne
May 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully articulates so many of the steps along the journey to spiritual reformation I’ve experienced. Wish I had found this 10 years ago! (Not sure I would have been ready to read it with an open mind and heart before then)
Mandi Grasmeyer
Apr 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
There were concepts that I loved and needed to hear, but I was a little turned off by the amount of quotes/suggested reading from others. See full review at: ...more
Andrea Humphries
Jul 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a book I'm sure I'll be revisiting repeatedly over the next few years. Practical, yet descriptive rather than prescriptive, Aaron Niequist details his own movement from a beliefs-based faith to a practice-based one and how that led to, among other things, the creation of The Practice, an ecumenical, liturgical service. An evangelical worship leader, Niequist discovered, and invites the reader into, the depth and beauty of historic Christian practices, disciplines, and liturgy. Chapter by ...more
Seth Thomas
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I've been following along with Aaron's work for a long time now, watching the evolution of his "New Liturgy" projects, the founding of The Practice Gathering, and seeing him wrestle with these deep questions discovering a faith that is lived, breathed, swam in. Rather than simply relying on "believing the right things" or being good "thinking things", this book is an invitation to get out of the boat or off the shore and begin to experience, engage, and practice the faith.

What Aaron does in The
Jacob Musselman
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aaron puts flesh on a bunch of things I've been feeling in my own walk with Jesus and tensions I've been feeling as I lead a church. This book is truly an invitation, and I left feeling excited about the possibilities of a deeper and richer practice of faith.
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
I am grateful to Aaron Niequist for his good work on "The Eternal Current" to make this important, life-changing content available. Like Aaron, I was raised in a tradition that felt it had the exclusive path to salvation and was devoid of a liturgy in Sunday morning gatherings. I am excited to learn what a practice based faith looks like and to share this knowledge with others.

I resonate with Aaron's words about the book.

For a long time, all the tension and division surrounding the modern Church
Rocky Woolery
Jun 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was challenged to think about spiritual practices in my own life, why I do what u do and what I might do beyond those practices to draw closer to God. There was also a challenge to consider what the church is doing and what it can do to help the people in the pews to live the life God desires from them.

That said, I think the more might have come if one or the other had been the focus. Possibly even two major sections one for each thought. Following the two major sections a concluding section o
Sep 17, 2018 rated it liked it
"Jesus didn't merely invite us to believe about the River. He didn't say, 'Here is the truth. Believe me.' He declared, 'I am the truth. Follow me.'" (p2)

"Although I had been a Christian most of my life, this was the first time I had heard teaching on the subject that Jesus devoted much of his teaching to. Jesus's primary message in the Gospels is the kingdom of God, but for some reason my tradition had avoided the topic entirely." (p12)

"Further, no matter where you sit, you are looking at the f
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you're someone who feels disequilibrium with the church as an institution, or if you're wondering why you feel burned out from church, this is the book for you. If you still desire to grow with other people who love Jesus and want to experience more of the Kingdom of God, this is the book for you. I know I'm all of those things. This book was for me. 

Aaron Niequist (yes, husband to Shauna) shares some of his own spiritual journey in these pages. As someone who thought it was enough to give up
Tyler Daniels
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Good read! I thought this book was an encouraging and challenging read about studying beyond our own denominational and theological camps and learning from the wider Kingdom of God in spiritual practice and engagement. Even from a Reformed perspective, although there are small quibbles of disagreement that I had with the book, I thought the emphasis on liturgy and studying Church history was refreshing.

The following are my “quibbles” with the book:

I wish the book would have relied a bit more on
Aug 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Practice is a service and a community that embraces the idea that “A Sunday service is not the main event but rather a training ground to help all of us become people who can live the way Jesus would if he were in our place.” Because of that we should engage in practices together that prepare us to walk in this world as followers of Jesus. Every service is centered around liturgy and practice and sends you with a charge to live out what you’ve just learned. It’s this idea of a practice based ...more
Adam Shields
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short Review: This is a short introduction to historic liturgically informed Christianity, primarily written toward low church evangelicals. I feel like I have been on a similar journey as Niequist. I have read most of the same books. I started spiritual direction at about the same time. I have followed his journey with the Practice from afar.

I affirm much of what it is the book. But I am still a bit unsure about whether the non-denominational world can add liturgical practice to their structur
George Roach
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: recommend
When I first started reading this book I felt as if Aaron Niequist was reading my journal and putting it in his book. Then I realized that I don't have a journal. Since I don't think Aaron is a mind reader then maybe I am not the only one that had come to a point in my faith that I felt like walking away from it all. Maybe I am not the only one that has faced the decision to "give in or give up".

The idea of practice based faith is an important discussion. For too long the church has presented th
Catharine Wright
Sep 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lifestyle, christian
"I was going to learn how to swim with Christ or drown trying" - Aaron Niequist

This novel is a great tool for those looking to deepen and expand their faith. Aaron's beautiful work helped me with something that I have been struggling with lately which is how different denominations and individuels worship and practice their faith. I have been praying for discernement when looking into different ways to deepen my faith. I have been nervous about stepping into things that are not common in my pent
Rob  Edwards
Aug 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Eternal Current is a book that will change the conversation in many churches today.
Aaron Neiquist weaves the personal and the communal together, as he shares his spiritual journey that ultimately gave rise to The Practice, a weekly worship gathering affiliated with Willow Creek Church in South Barrington, IL. Neiquist paints the portrait of a “practice-based faith”—one that is anchored in ancient personal and communal spiritual practices such as daily prayer (the Daily Office & the Exam
Chris McGrath
Aug 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is the story of one Evangelical worship leader who came to the difficult realization that his faith tradition, while good, did not offer a complete enough experience of God's Kingdom. He began a journey to find more than what he had been brought up in. He created an experimental, cross-denominational church service that explored a variety of ways to walk with God, many of which would seem quite strange to the average American Evangelical.

I expected a description of what kind of things
Rebecca Ray
Dec 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book 198 of 2019. Niequist, as a worship leader at several churches, becomes disenchanted with traditional church and begins to search for a way to grow spiritually and to put his faith into practice. He finds emphasis on practice-based spiritually in the writings of Dallas Willard and in other, more traditional branches of Christianity. With the permission of his mega church pastor, he begins a small on-campus group of likeminded Christians who meet on Sunday nights to engage in various practic ...more
Bev Giroux
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
That moment that a spark of fire turns into a roaring blaze is what I would describe this book did to my life.
As I learned about the faith journey of the author, Aaron, through this book, I learned so much of my own faith journey. He has a way of putting into words and practice that which I had only felt and begun to grasp.
So much of my Christian life has felt a little thin at times in my life and I was more than relieved to read about someone who not only felt the same, but began to figure out
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