books · faith · learning

Desiring the Kingdom

Yesterday I wrote about The Good Life. And there is wonderful reason.  For a couple of weeks I have been reading a little book called Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation.  I saw this book over at Through the Mind to the Heart, and it intrigued me. Lisa A is linking up with Mystie @ Simply Convivial for an online book club discussion.  I decided to order the book…the title was the hook.  However, I do not think I will be able to keep up with all of the Tuesday postings. We shall see!

The premise of the book is a re-envisioning of Christian education.  Smith claims that liturgy is the heart of forming a Christian rather than ideas.  Therefore he argues that what we do far out ways what we know.  He uses the term liturgy in a broad sense to sort of create a seamless connection between all of life.  He describes man as a lover above all.  He contrasts that with other opinions from philosophical references that make man a thinker, or a believer.  His idea that man is a lover gives the basis for what he says man believes to be the good life.  The good life that a man chooses is driven by what he loves.  And so I have been asking myself…what do I love? Or better, how does God love me?

I have read the contents page to see how Smith develops the idea of man as lover and how a love of God is formed in us.  And surprisingly he describes the world as sacrament.  This development will be interesting to read coming from a Protestant/Reformed perspective.

But for now I am just pondering the incarnation and how amazing it is.  God has met me in the flesh.  He has taken on matter, and through this incarnation He fills my life with grace. (I am thinking water, oil, bread, wine.)  But, it is so much more than that.  My interaction with the physical world, my liturgies, speak of a deep, unseen, and possibly unlearned love.  For me this book all but says it…maybe the whole world is made of love.  It’s in us, it is our DNA.

To love is to live, and move, and have our being.


4 thoughts on “Desiring the Kingdom

  1. Glad you're joining! I saw your post on the Good Life and I wondered if you'd begun the book. 🙂

    Did you notice how he said that his book was partly influenced by Fr. Alexander Schmemann' s For the Life of the World? I'm interested to read what he writes on worship and sacraments.

    Your mention of how you're thinking about how God loves you remind me of an article I read a couple years ago by Fr. Michael Nasser. He said, “God didn't create you to love and serve Him. He created you so that He could love and serve you.”


  2. Welcome, Amanda! I'm so glad you're joining us! I, too, am looking forward to see how he weaves these perspectives together as he goes. Did you see Willa's post about his background?


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