We are story-making people. We love reading stories—and we love hearing the personal stories of others. We need stories, or narratives, to make sense of our world. And those stories shape our lives. What is the story you have been told about the gospel? About God? About the Christian life? About Jesus? About the cross? About yourself? About heaven? Your answers to these questions will form a story that will determine how your life will go. The answers reveal your ability to trust, to love, to hope—and even your capacity for joy. Any story worth giving the power to shape our lives must pass a simple test: is it beautiful, good, and true? If it is, then it is a Magnificent Story—and that is where transformation takes place. From James Bryan Smith, author of the bestselling book Good and Beautiful God , comes this spiritual formation resource meant to help both individuals and groups understand the Magnificent Story of Christ in their lives. Soon to be followed by The Magnificent Journey: Living Deep in the Kingdom (Fall 2018) and The Magnificent Mission: Called and Sent by the Storyteller (Fall 2019), the field-tested material within includes spiritual practices at the end of each chapter and a group discussion guide. Uncover the true story of beauty, goodness, and truth that will satisfy the ultimate longings of your heart.
How to Get the Most Out of This Book 1. Longing for a Magnificent Story Soul Training Exercise: Beauty 2. Falling for Shrunken Stories Soul Training Exercise: Goodness 3. Participating in the Trinity Soul Training Exercise: Truth 4. Bathing in Beauty Soul Training Exercise: Sight 5. Embracing Our Goodness Soul Training Exercise: Sound 6. Discovering the Truth Soul Training Exercise: Smell 7. Destroying Sin, Abandonment, and Death Soul Training Exercise: Touch 8. Making All Things New Soul Training Exercise: Taste 9. Living in the Magnificent Way Soul Training Exercise: Celebration Acknowledgments Study Guide Notes
"The distinctive contribution of The Magnificent Story is its attentiveness to the power of stories to destroy us, diminish us, and deprive us, or to free us, redeem us, and empower us. Spiritual formation teachers have rarely known the power of story, but none has it so central as James Bryan Smith. I consider The Magnificent Story to be a long leap into the deep graces of spiritual formation, not just for individuals but for small groups and churches."