Missional Spirituality: Embodying God's Love from the Inside Out, By Roger Helland and Leonard Hjalmarson

Missional Spirituality

Embodying God's Love from the Inside Out

by Roger Helland and Leonard Hjalmarson
Foreword by Alan Hirsch

Missional Spirituality
  • Length: 253 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.25 in
  • Published: October 05, 2011
  • Imprint: IVP
  • Item Code: 3807
  • ISBN: 9780830838073

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If all of the earth is God's domain, why are Christians so terribly provincial? We rarely leave our church buildings, and our spirituality rarely takes us beyond ourselves.

Veteran church leaders Roger Helland and Leonard Hjalmarson observe that Jesus begins his mission in the temple, where he wows the religious elite and chides his parents by saying, "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?" But Jesus doesn't stay in the temple; indeed, in Christ the temple of the Lord is on the move--even to the ends of the earth.

In this book the authors helpfully reconnect spirituality and mission, showing you how the spiritual life, when lived properly, follows a similar progression: we "come home" to Christ, loving him from our heart and soul and mind and strength. And then we set forth to love our neighbors as ourself. Discover how through this process you can reclaim the whole of God's kingdom for his glory and the fulfillment of your heart's longing.

"After years of endless theoretical conversations about 'missional imagination,' Roger and Len take us to where we need to begin: a missional spirituality that creates the practices necessary for imagination and mission to emerge."

Gary Nelson, author, Borderland Churches, and president, Tyndale Seminary

"Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson offer us a guide to a spirituality that is deep and yet practical, mystical (in the best sense of the word) and yet missional. They cite many authors, and yet can boil the information in each chapter down so as to end with a series of exercises and discussion questions that will lead the reader into the depth of spiritual life that they commend. I recommend this book to all who do not want to escape the world, but rather want to engage and subvert the world from a life rooted and grounded in the trinitarian life of God."

Peter H. Davids, Houston Baptist University

"Roger and Len have provided something that is urgently needed: a contemporary guide to Christian spirituality that is integrated with the missional identity and practice of the church. And what is so encouraging is that they provide theological foundations to their study, draw on the spiritual wisdom of earlier movements in the life of the church and outline distinctive practices that can mark the life of the Christian in community. Equally significant, they give particular attention to the spiritual yearnings of this generation. The result is an invaluable resource for those who shape congregational life and witness."

Gordon T. Smith, president of reSource Leadership International

"Doesn't spirituality end up in navel-gazing? Doesn't mission end up in spiritual burn out? No and no. Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson show us that the biblical vision of Christianity is indeed a missional spirituality."

Todd Hunter, author, Christianity Beyond Belief, bishop, Anglican Mission in the Americas

"Missional Spirituality grows on you. At first it might seem to be another pitch for spiritual formation, but it actually goes much deeper than that. It forces us to think about a 'spirituality that forms and feeds mission.' It doesn't allow us to be content with our 'Temple competencies' and our methods for doing church. It is a call for the church to be committed to its spirituality by emphasizing the motivation for spiritual formation and being missional. I found myself wishing for this kind of stimulation when I began ministry forty years ago."

Arnell Motz, president, Canadian Baptist Seminary

"Missional Spirituality delivers on its title, reconnecting missional practice and the spirituality needed to sustain such practice. Written from the Pietist tradition but drawing on many sources, and set in the context of profound cultural transition, this book provides a theological foundation for a truly missional spirituality and a range of practices to earth this spirituality in daily life."

Stuart Murray Williams, founder of Urban Expression

"Somewhere between emergence and resurgence lies an insistent call to mission. Rather than choosing sides in the growing debate between whether the church should be more Word-centered or more culturally focused, Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson call us all to our mutual concern for gospel mission. The spiritual life is lived in relationship on earth as it is in heaven. Roger and Len help us greatly by showing us how. Full of examples and ideas, Missional Spirituality challenges us to a more faithful and more fruitful Christian life."

Kenton C. Anderson, president, Northwest Baptist Seminary, and author, Choosing to Preach

"All mission flows from a transformed life. With the turbulent cultural waves of liminality and change crashing upon us, a missional disciple must abide in Jesus as a loving, Spirit-empowered missionary. Roger and Len navigate a fresh perspective centered in Jesus, his creed for our lives, and the power that flows from his heart into ours and then out to the world. If you are tired of shallow outward techniques, and hungry for a deeper missional spirituality, then we highly recommend this book."

Steve Holt and Daniel Rolfe, Word Spirit Network

"Until we deal with the question of spiritual formation, 'missional church' will remain a lot of talk. Missional Spirituality addresses this issue for the church in North America. It's an intense and lively study that covers lots of ground. Rooting their study in the Great Commandment, Scripture, history and the manifold literature of mission, Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson push us through theology and practice to real life. We learn how to become missionaries, not just talk about it. Highly compelling. I recommend it for all who want to explore what it means to embody God's love from the inside out."

David Fitch, Lindner Chair of Evangelical Theology, Northern Seminary, and author of The End of Evangelicalism?

"I found myself saying, 'Yes, yes, yes,' as I read Missional Spirituality. So many books on spirituality are focused on self-improvement and private pietistic devotion, and they often leave me cold and uninspired. Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson helpfully reconnect spirituality and mission, believing all truly Christian spiritual formation to be for the sake of the world. They take Jesus as their supreme example, the one who claimed that he was nourished by doing his Father's will and work. This book is a triumph."

Michael Frost, author, Exiles, ReJesus, and, with Alan Hirsch, The Shaping of Things to Come and The Faith of Leap

"Roger Helland and Len Hjalmarson have gifted us with a well-crafted, multidimensional, life-challenging volume in their Missional Spirituality. The excellent scholarship is matched equally with an inspirational voice. The resulting combination is compelling and convicting at the same time. Take time to let this book read you."

Reggie McNeal, author of Missional Renaissance

"There are many books about either missional living or spiritual disciplines, but few are as intentional about bringing the two together as Missional Spirituality. . . . [It] addresses that fundamental tension between personal piety and caring for neighbors."

Nathan McCorkindale, Mennonite Brethren Herald, February 2012


Foreword by Alan Hirsch

1. Exploring a Missional Spirituality
2. Challenges for a Missional Spirituality
3. Theological Foundations
4. Missional Spirituality in Action
5. Your Heart and Soul 1
6. Your Heart and Soul 2
7. Your Mind Matters
8. From All Your Strength
9. Love Your Neighbor
10. The Gospel According to You

Appendix 1: Equipping for a Missional Spirituality in the Church and Academy
Appendix 2: Missional Spirituality in Action: Gateway Community Church

About the Authors


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Roger Helland

Roger Helland (DMin, Trinity Western Unversity, Langley, BC) is district executive coach for the Baptist General Conference in Alberta, Canada. His other books include The Journey, The Revived Church, and Let the River Flow.

Leonard Hjalmarson

Leonard Hjalmarson (DMin) is transitional pastor at Crossroads Community Church in Chilliwack, British Columbia. He is also adjunct faculty at Tyndale Seminary in Toronto. His books include Missional Spirituality, An Emerging Dictionary for the Gospel and Culture, The Soul of the City, Broken Futures, and No Home Like Place.