Wisdom Chaser: Finding My Father at 14,000 Feet, By Nathan Foster alt

Wisdom Chaser

Finding My Father at 14,000 Feet

by Nathan Foster

Wisdom Chaser
  • Length: 187 pages
  • Published: February 25, 2010
  • Imprint: IVP Formatio
  • Item Code: 7949
  • ISBN: 9780830879496

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It began with a simple question:

"One day I found myself asking my father, across the chasm between us, 'Hey Dad, you want to climb the highest mountain in Colorado?'"

And for Nathan Foster and his father, Richard, that simple question changed everything. With no hiking experience to draw on, they embarked on a journey of physical challenge, discovering just how far they could push themselves. For Nathan a parallel journey took him inside himself.

Having grown up in the shadow of a famous father, Richard J. Foster, author of Celebration of Discipline, Nathan had a lot of questions about who his father really was. Would hiking open the door for him to get to know this distant figure?

As the one-time experiment evolved into a decade of challenging hikes up Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, the Fourteeners, Nathan navigated his twenties—finishing college, choosing a career, a possible cross-country move, the early years of marriage and a major personal crisis. Along the way he would discover exactly what his father could offer him.

This book also includes an afterword by Richard J. Foster, author of Celebration of Discipline and coauthor of Longing for God.

"Son and father, Nathan and Richard Foster, set out to climb Colorado's 'fourteeners' together. Wisdom Chaser is poignant and winsome as successive mountains deepen for each, the son and the father, what it means to be a son, to be a father. Add mountain climbing to your list of spiritual disciplines."

Eugene H. Peterson, translator of The Message and author of A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

"This book will give comfort to parents of kids who are still finding their way, and hope to kids who are seeking to understand their parents."

Philip Yancey, author of The Jesus I Never Knew

"This superb relational story takes readers of all ages through the grandeur of the Colorado Rockies and the peaks and valleys of the son of a famous Christian author who didn't know or like his father. As they strive for mountain summits, they learn about one another on the trail. This is a true-life adventure of physical and emotional risks, touching topics of familial love, pride, failure, and conquering life's obstacles. Foster reveals his personal struggle with alcohol, drugs, and marriage. Church life is discussed at lenth: 'What people so despreately need today is space, stillness and attentiveness. What so many churches major in are busyness, hurry and noise.'"

John Bernstein, CBA Retailers Resources, April 2010

"Deeply engaging . . . unsparing . . . gem of a book . . . readers . . . will be grateful for its insights, humility, and tenderness."

Publishers Weekly (starred review), April 2010


1 It Never Hurts to Ask
2 The Beating on Mount Ebert
3 The Quandary of Dreaming
4 Finding My Pace on Mount Quandary
5 Time: Love's Allegory
6 Freedom to Fail
7 A Much-Loved Nothing
8 Humility Is For Losers
9 On False Summits
10 Freedom to Question
11 How Do You Celebrate Discipline?
12 Living in the Moment on Long?s Peak
13 Sometimes the Dragons Win
14 Accepting Things I Cannot Change
15 Rising and Falling to Assumptions
16 What's in a Name (The Tale of Skippy and Pete)
17 Choices on the Continental Divide
18 Electric Air on Holy Cross
19 Beauty Beyond Imagination
20 Walking Each Other Home
Afterword: Lessons from the Final Fourteener


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Nathan Foster

Nathan Foster is associate professor of social work and theology at Spring Arbor University, where he holds the Andrews Chair in Spiritual Formation. He is director of teaching ministries for Renovaré as well as a licensed clinical social worker, certified addictions counselor, public speaker, and bassist for the band Christy & The Professors. He is the author of The Making of an Ordinary Saint: My Journey from Frustration to Joy with the Spiritual Disciplines and Wisdom Chaser: Finding My Father at 14,000 Feet. He currently resides in Michigan with his wife, Christy, and their two children.