Whole Life Transformation: Becoming the Change Your Church Needs  -     By: Keith D. Meyer
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Whole Life Transformation: Becoming the Change Your Church Needs

Inter-Varsity Press / 2010 / Hardcover

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Product Description

Whole Life Transformation shows those in ministry how God uses spiritual disciplines to transform people and how their personal transformation impacts their ministry. Author Keith Miller was living a life of successful ministry marked by higher attendance, bigger budgets, and an increasing number of church programs. Exhausted, short-tempered, and arguing with his wife about how he spent his time became the norm. Influenced by Dallas Willard after reading his book, Spirit of the Disciplines, he began to believe he could have a new kind of life lived in victory over sin. Read and discover how a whole world can be transformed when marriages, families, friendships, and church bodies are renewed through the Holy Spirit.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 217
Vendor: Inter-Varsity Press
Publication Date: 2010
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 083083530X
ISBN-13: 9780830835300
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

2011 Golden Canon Leadership Book Award winner! Ministry to others and growing the church were the center of Keith Meyer's life. And yet he was arguing with his wife about how many nights a week he was spending in meetings. His temper was short, and he was exhausted. Keith writes: "I can see that I was pursuing a twisted idea of 'success'--not in the secular forms I regularly preached against, but in the sanctified activism and workaholism sometimes called 'professional ministry.' A growing church, defined mostly by higher attendance at church services, more and more programs, and bigger budgets and buildings were the marks of a successful ministry in the clergy circles I ran with at that time." In the midst of his pain Keith discovered a new way of living--one that truly depended on Christ to redeem and reform his character. And then as he was transformed, he discovered that the change in him was changing the way that he was pastoring and leading others. Drawing from the riches of church history and the experience of contemporary ministry, Keith Meyer writes with the voice of a prophet and the heart of a pastor. If you're ready to stop trying to follow Christ and start training to be a Christ follower, this is the book for you.

Author Bio

Keith Meyer (D.Min., M.Div.) has served three churches as senior pastor and as the executive pastor at Church of the Open Door. He is an adjunct professor at Denver Seminary and is a senior teaching fellow with the Renovar Spiritual Formation Institute. He is one of the authors of (NavPress). Meyer is also a speaker, teacher, and retreat leader through his organization, Becoming the Change Ministries. He provides individualized coaching for the personal formation of pastors and leaders and consults with staff teams, churches and Christian organizations for developing corporate plans for becoming communities of formation and mission. He also provides training for leaders to develop plans of regular soul care for themselves, their staff and congregations. Meyer is a contributing editor for and also for the academic journal of Biola/Talbot's Institute of Spiritual Formation, the Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care. He and his wife live in the Minneapolis area. Meyer invites you to visit and contact him at his website, www.keithmeyer.org. Dallas Willard (1935-2013) was a professor in the School of Philosophy at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles for over 40 years. A highly influential author and teacher, Willard was as celebrated for his enduring writings on spiritual formation as he was for his scholarship. His books include ( Book of the Year in 1998), and others. His books have received numerous Annual Book Awards and other recognitions. Willard served on the boards of the C.S. Lewis Foundation and Biola University, and was a member of numerous evaluation committees for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. He received bachelors degrees from both Tennessee Temple College and Baylor University and a graduate degree at Baylor University, as well as a PhD from the University of Wisconsin in Philosophy and the History of Science.

Editorial Reviews

"This is an immensely honest and practical book—a desperately needed book. It tells a hard-hitting story—one that is born out of the depths of harsh experiences and painful admissions in the author's own personal life, relationships and ministry—and moves passionately toward a godliness that comes only from learning to walk with Jesus right in the middle of it all. The author challenges 'the reduced gospel' in order to call all who know Jesus to the work of the Holy Spirit in transforming our lives privately, relationally, communally, publicly and in ministry."
"I've known Keith for more than thirty years, and what you now hold in your hands is a transparent record of an authentic journey, a window into one man's broken pastoral heart, an honest set of reflections, and the quest for healing for Keith's soul and family. Keith's eclectic approach to spiritual formation leads him to a gentle rule for a sustainable spiritual life that begins at home."
"Keith Meyer doesn't cut any slack for forgiven Christians who lollygag around earth waiting for their turn to enter heaven. He reminds us that Christian discipleship requires a whole life transformation which converts the heart, its values and its relationships so that the world can be transformed. This book is unnerving and unsettling—in the gospel sense!"
"With refreshing candor and honest confession Keith Meyer takes us on a wonderful journey that will pull you in and knock you out (in a good way!) with its potent critique of our modern church compulsions, activities and teachings that dominate church life, yet constantly leave us longing for true and lasting change. This is a book on Christlike (trans)formation, in this life . . . and it couldn't come at a better time! I heartily commend it to all Christian leaders who want to lead a new kind of church."
"If you're a Christian leader longing for something more, then Whole Life Transformation may be your open door for personal and ministry renewal. Keith Meyer is one of us with a rich evangelical heritage as a P.K. and a pastor of several churches, and yet something was missing. 'Dad, are you home yet?' prompts this journey toward something more, recounted throughout the book with refreshing honesty. Keith's writing is personal, courageous and bold. His story offers Christian leaders some practical ways to engage in their own personal journey that can lead to churchwide whole life transformation."
"Not another pastor-tells-it-all book. Keith Meyer understands that he leaned his ladder up against the wrong wall, and when he sees the troubling view from there he tells how he climbed down and enlisted others to help him move the ladder to the wall of life and hope. This is a prophetic book that is not angry, for the author more often points the finger at himself than at anyone else. Not content to simply describe his own wanderings, he graciously and concretely invites Christian leaders to follow Jesus more closely and receive his wisdom and healing."
" Whole Life Transformation is a book of remarkable honesty and authenticity. In a text rich with anecdotes and hard-won wisdom, Keith Meyer summons evangelicals to abandon their adumbrative 'gospel' in favor of a fuller grasp of the liberating gospel of the New Testament."
"Keith Meyer's Whole Life Transformation is a compelling invitation. His particular blend of divine grace, community life, intentional discipline, inner healing and a sense of humor is a blue-ribbon recipe for Christian maturity. Meyer opens his wounded soul and—as we look on— we are the ones who long for more. It is personal, devotional and practical. We cannot read this book and rest satisfied in a complacent Christian walk."
"On some level every pastor will identify with Meyer's dysfunctional experience in ministry. He asks why so many of us fail to experience the transforming power of Christ we proclaim. That is a dangerous question, but Meyer's raw honesty is matched with a hope-filled rediscovery of the gospel."
"To know and read Keith Meyer is to be thrust into a vortex of contrasts. Is he a pastor with the mind of a scholar or a theologian with the heart of a soul friend? An activist who has learned to slow down or a contemplative bursting with missional energy? An evangelical rooted in the Catholic saints and Eastern fathers or an Anglican divested of formalism and ritualism? The prodigal son or the compassionate father? Yes, he is all of these and more. Get to know him and the Jesus he knows. You will become the change your church, your family and your world need--whole life transformation!"
"Keith Meyer provides us with an honest and thoughtful account of a pastor deeply tempted to find his identity in the busyness and success of ministry. His journey gives us a window into the process of one leader turning his heart back to true transformation that occurs in ordinary places of honesty and reflection such as at home and with people who share a common life in their weakness."
"'Teaching them to observe all that I commanded you'" was my repeating thought as I read this book. Keith Meyer encourages and challenges us to reach far beyond the quantity of disciples to where the impact lies—quality of disciples. We all know from personal experience that the challenge lies in 'observing' all that Jesus commanded. In this book, Keith lays out the path to true transformation. I was challenged on a personal level and inspired on a leadership level as I read. For anyone interested in measuring quality, this is a must-read book."
"Thank you, Keith, for writing authentically and lovingly about the need for churches, ministries and believers to bridge the transformation gap from a halfway gospel into the abundant life of Christ's kingdom. Sharing the biblical and historical text, as well as the raw material of your personal and ministry life, invites all of us into new and fresh Spirit-breathed directions for the entirety of our spiritually transformed lives."
"Keith Meyer is the type of person you want to spend time with. He is transparent, well read, fun-loving, irreverent and deeply spiritual—a real person's person. When you are hanging out together, time flies. Whole Life Transformation is a perfect reflection of the author, and it's a book about spiritual transformation written by an experienced pastor who has lived the journey. It's his first book, but it sure won't be his last."
" Whole Life Transformation . . . is not just another analysis of 'what's wrong,' but, more importantly, is a trustworthy guide to what is right: one drawn both from the author's own experience and from the Bible and the wisdom of Christ, proven in the experience of his people throughout the ages."
"A shepherd of souls lost in the far country of ministry distraction is called home through the words of a child. Spiritually expansive for all who minister."
"I know you can't see me, but I am giving Keith Meyer a standing ovation. On a couple of occasions while reading Whole Life Transformation, I did jump from my chair and shout 'Yes!' I love Keith Meyer; I love his joy, honesty, energy and his overactive mind. Here is a soldier who has struck a blow for making things right. He has got the gospel right, the church right and life right. Speaking as a failed contemplative, it is comforting to know he also has being with God right."
"Thousands of pastors, priests and leaders know that something is not right these days with the spirituality of church. In Whole Life Transformation Meyer shines a bright and grace-filled light on the problem. His insights are crystal clear. Best of all, in an autobiographical style, he supplies doable practices toward all of us becoming the change our churches need."
"In North American church life, we are strangely plagued by a practice of ministry that separates the pastor from the life in Christ. The result is the empty, mechanical, dry life of the pastor caught in the evangelical machine. Whole Life Transformation speaks directly into this plight. In this fine book, Keith Meyer draws on the deep wells of the church fathers as well as the wisdom of Dallas Willard to offer us a drink of water in the midst of the desert that pastoral ministry has become. As a fine thinker, a student of theology and a pastor, Meyer offers us a clear, practical pathway out because he himself has walked it."
"Keith Meyer writes cogently and personally about a deeper inner journey for evangelicals who desire a closer walk with Jesus in their daily life. He is clearly drinking sacred water from a deeper well and sharing it with the rest of us."
"Many people struggle to know how to 'do church' in light of spiritual formation. Finally, here is the book they've been looking for. It maps a route and gives us pictures of how our life with other Christians can take on this transformational dimension."

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  1. richard r blake
    Bridgman, MI
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: male
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    From Trying to Training as Followers of Jesus
    March 23, 2011
    richard r blake
    Bridgman, MI
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: male
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    From Trying to Training as Followers of Jesus

    "Whole Life Transformation" is based on Keith Meyer's journey in spiritual formation. The book is a "formatio" imprint of Inter Varsity Press, which addresses church tradition in the area of spiritual formation, transformation by Christ, and becoming conformed to His image, an integrating of God's Word with spiritual practice.

    Keith tells of his dramatic realization that he had become a workaholic in "professional ministry." In the midst of his pursuit for success as a pastor Keith was faced with the realization that his family and home life were being neglected. His personal "drive," ministry demands, and the number of evening meetings left him exhausted, short tempered, and at odds with his wife.

    The book is Keith's story of discovery, a discovery of the need for a relevance of attitudinal behavioral teaching in the church consistent with the doctrinal teaching of the grace and forgiveness of God. He tells of his journey to "new life" and of serving Jesus as Lord, a life of redemption, repentance, and reform. This transformation in Keith's life led to a change in how he pastors and in his leadership of others. He speaks honestly of the transformation gap in today's church as the result of the prevalence of a reduced Gospel, a gospel that leaves out the idea of a significant whole life change, and a chagrin of existing sin. He invites the reader to join him in a "virtue walk" that involves transformation in all areas of life: money, sex, prayerfulness, anger, control, fear, and worry. He calls the church to a holistic vision of society, to become "salt and Light" to the world in order to make a difference and impact on culture, with an emphasis on what to do - not how to do it.

    Meyers writing is personal, pointed, and practical. "Whole Life Transformation: Becoming the Change Your Church Needs" is written for pastors, is highly acclaimed by recognized church pastors and leaders and the forward written by Dallas Willard reinforces the importance of Keith's message of spiritual formation in the life contemporary church.

    A complimentary review copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

    As Reviewed for Midwest Book Review.
  2. Rev. Bruce A. Overstreet
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    June 24, 2010
    Rev. Bruce A. Overstreet
    Dr. Meyer does a great job wetting our appetite and desire for whole life change. He doesn't just write about it, he has lived it. Many can relate to the challenge and frustration of wanting to be changed in habits, desires and overall life direction. Are we really destined to simply exist as unchanged believers waiting for the Kingdom? Has protestant-evangelicalism given up aspects of Biblical faith in Jesus that has made our modern day walk defective? Meyer would argue that to be the case, and that many of the challenges faced in North American evangelicalism have their roots in this nominal Christian doctrine. Bonhoeffer called it "cheap grace." Paul called it milk without meat. Meyer calls it deficient. Through his historical & Scriptural supported conversational style Meyer makes a great case for the idea of Whole Life Transformation being something followers of Jesus can experience now on this side of eternity. Meyer's approach is one that all can relate to.Meyer does not leave us with just a great idea, but after clearly explaining the "what & why" he then gives clear explanation and direction so that one can follow his footsteps on the path that leads to true life change and a closer walk with the Lord.I do highly recommend this book.I am encouraging my family, friends and fellow church folks to get a copy and read it soon.
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