Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?
Stephen W. Hiemstra
In seminary I was active in the Pierce Fellowship at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Charlotte, NC which focuses on spiritual formation and discipling. The Pierce Fellowship was my home away from home at school. Thus, spirituality was an important aspect of my seminary experience.
The specific inspiration for A Christian Guide to Spirituality arose when I wrote a short newsletter article on Christian spirituality. In the article, I examined the Lord's Prayer and asked the 4 questions from Peter Kreeft's book, The Philosophy of Jesus (South Bend: Saint Augustine's Press, 2007): Who is God? Who are we? What do we do? How do we know? This exercise proved fruitful and demonstrated the depth of reflection in the prayer.
In reading other books on spirituality, I came to realize that the focus of Christian spirituality was missing. In fact, when I took a class on worship, the focus was more on form than content. Then, in reading Simon Chan's book, Liturgical Theology: The Church as Worshiping Community (Downer's Grove: IVP Academic, 2006), I became aware that the traditional teaching of the church--The Apostle's Creed, the Lord's Prayer, and the Ten Commandments--were part of authentic worship.
My reflection on the Lord's Prayer was no accident, but rather part of the larger teaching and spirituality of the church. As I came to that realization, I saw the need to write my book.