I read the book Exiles by Michael Frost over the last month during my time at the gym. Over the lunch hour, I grab my book and head to the gym.
Aside from the fact that highlighting is difficult on both the elliptical and the treadmill, I love reading while I exercise. If the book is good, it makes the time go fast.
I usually have expectations for a book, hopeful of what I think it might contain. Some books fall short of those expectations and some books far surpass them. I probably had unfairly high expectations for Exiles based on the subtitle "living missionally," certain there would be answers to my latest questions.
My good friend ;) Alan Hirsch recommended that I read Shaping of Things to Come first, but I was so anxious to crack open Exiles, that I read it first. I also have the same high expectations for The Forgotten Way, so it will be read next. (However, now I'm in the middle of Permission Granted and absolutely loving it!)
Back to Exiles, I don't plan on giving a formal review, but rather just sharing a few thoughts over the next couple of posts. The outline of the book is based on four disciplines for exiles described by Walter Brueggeman - dangerous memories, dangerous promises, dangerous critique, and dangerous songs.
My impression (personal opinion only, your mileage may vary) is that the heart of Michael's message is in the first half of the book. It seemed to me that the rest of the book was written to simply fill in the outline. Perhaps I felt that way because the first half of the book was most applicable to my situation.
Today, I'll just give you a couple of great quotes from the second chapter:
"The degree to which we adopt a tame and insipid picture of Jesus is the degree to which we avoid the mission to which he has called us."
"We then are free to follow Jesus' example as he models for us the profound power of sharing a table with the marginalized and the despised. This surely is the locus of missional activity - grace, love, hospitality, generosity."