Faith Shift
Hope for spiritual refugees, church burnouts, and freedom seekers.  After years of participating in a comfortable faith tradition, many find themselves in a spiritual wilderness, feeling disillusioned with church, longing for more freedom and less religion in their lives.If that describes you, you’re in good company. Countless men and women are in the middle of a shifting faith—and aren’t sure where to turn.    What if you discovered that losing beliefs doesn’t mean you have to lose your faith?   Pastor, friend, and spiritual director Kathy Escobar has journeyed with many who have experienced significant shifts in the faith they once considered unchangeable. Through their stories and her own, Kathy has discovered that growth and change are natural parts of life in our relationship with God.Filled with honest stories and practical insights, Faith Shift gives language to what many experience as their faith evolves. With an inviting blend of vulnerability and hope, it addresses the losses that come with spiritual shifts and offers tangible practices for rebuilding a free and authentic faith after it unravels.   What feels like an ending can become a new beginning.   Includes personal reflection and group discussion questions at the end of each chapter.

Faith Shift Details

TitleFaith Shift
Author
ReleaseOct 21st, 2014
PublisherConvergent Books
ISBN-139781601425430
Rating
GenreSpirituality, Nonfiction, Religion, Faith, Self Help, Christianity

Faith Shift Review

  • GollyRojer
    January 1, 1970
    There were two things I kept saying throughout as I read this book: "Honey, listen to this!" and, "I've got to bookmark this so I can come back and post it online." Up until the last couple of chapters, it felt as though the book had been written specifically for me.It is written for and about people who initially became deeply immersed in church beliefs, activities and lifestyle, but at some point began to have questions or doubts, and instead of being nurtured or helped, find themselves margin There were two things I kept saying throughout as I read this book: "Honey, listen to this!" and, "I've got to bookmark this so I can come back and post it online." Up until the last couple of chapters, it felt as though the book had been written specifically for me.It is written for and about people who initially became deeply immersed in church beliefs, activities and lifestyle, but at some point began to have questions or doubts, and instead of being nurtured or helped, find themselves marginalized or shunned by the church. The book describes and labels stages the author and others have gone through which led ultimately to a happier, freer, more mature and realistic form of spirituality.While the author states that she never came to the point of completely losing all faith or belief in Jesus, many of those she knows and with whom she has worked did so, some coming to refer to themselves as agnostics or atheists. This is not approached with horror or disdain, nor as if it were an illness needing curing. The position taken is that each person's experience is unique, and that this is a necessary part of their dealing with the situation. It is neither bad nor good; it simply is.The stages identified by the book are Fusing--a childlike, black-and-white, good-or-bad form of belief during which we become involved in church activities to the exclusion of the secular world; Shifting--when we begin to have questions, doubts, cognitive dissonance regarding what was initially perceived as a system with all the answers in life; Returning--when one assesses the consequences of the path of leaving, becomes frightened, and returns to the former church and lifestyle rather than continue this new course; Unravelling--for those not Returning, the loss of everything once held as sacred, the dismantling of a belief system; Severing--cutting ties not only with the church, but also with friends and even family members who will not accept us with this new questioning, doubting attitude; and Rebuilding--once we have cleared away the rubble of the old belief system, determining for ourselves what we believe. This usually involves a willingness to be accepting of those with differing beliefs and views, and to interact with the secular world as part of it rather than considering ourselves separate and "not touching the unclean thing".The author devotes a couple of chapters to discussing how to care for those in the unravelling stage. Almost half the book is devoted to discussing the stage of rebuilding.The majority of this book came too late for me. I had my crisis of conscience in 1987. The church itself did the severing for me (Jehovah's Witnesses and their shunning practice), and I spent a long time drinking my way to numbness before finally completing the unravelling stage around 2000. I have stumbled through a rebuilding stage that is still going on. I believe it would have been a tremendous help to me if I'd been able to read this book at the beginning of my split from religious certainty. It would have clarified several things and reassured me that I wasn't alone in what I was experiencing regarding my spiritual beliefs and life.The book won't be of equal value to everyone. Those who are not in some stage of a faith shift most likely won't be able to identify. For those who are, however, I highly recommend this book.
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  • James
    January 1, 1970
    In 2006, Kathy Escobar underwent a ‘faith shift.’ No longer able to conform to the beliefs and practices of her conservative evangelical church, she went through a time of shifting and unraveling before rebuilding her faith, albeit in a new way. Currently she is a popular blogger, the co-founder of Refuge, a mission center and Christian community in the North Denver area and a spiritual director. As a spiritual director and pastor she has journeyed alongside many spiritual-shifters.Faith Shift i In 2006, Kathy Escobar underwent a ‘faith shift.’ No longer able to conform to the beliefs and practices of her conservative evangelical church, she went through a time of shifting and unraveling before rebuilding her faith, albeit in a new way. Currently she is a popular blogger, the co-founder of Refuge, a mission center and Christian community in the North Denver area and a spiritual director. As a spiritual director and pastor she has journeyed alongside many spiritual-shifters.Faith Shift is not just Escobar’s story; it is the fruit of her story and is birthed by her work with fellow-faith-shifters. Escobar has cataloged the process that she and others have gone through as they moved from a faith which was ‘certain’ but narrow toward a reconstructed, generous faith (or a movement beyond faith). By naming the process, Escobar comforts those experiencing the disorientation and disequilibrium of a ‘faith shift.’ The stages she describes are:Fusing– characterized by believing, learning and doing underscore this stage. People in this stage place a strong value on affiliation, certainty, conformity.Shifting–discomfort with formulaic answers and beginning to disengage with aspects of belonging with the in-group.Returning–This stage is a ‘re-engagement’ and a ‘return’ to the faith community we were in, in the ‘fusing stage.’Unraveling–A letting go of the faith we had in our ‘fusing stage.’ If the fusing stage valued affiliation, certainty and confromity, in the unraveling stage we value autonomy, authenticity, uncertainty (65).Severing–cutting ties with your past belief system (Escobar observes that most shifters do not give up their belief in God, or their faith totally, but she allows for the possibility.Rebuilding–In the final stage, new faith (or a new spirituality, even an atheistic one) emerges. In this stage, our values are freedom, mystery, diversity (129).Along the way, Escobar has a number of wise and compassionate things to say. Escobar validates whatever stage we may be at on our spiritual journey because each stage has peculiar gifts for us. Those who return to their original faith are validated because all our journeys are different, people return or a variety of reasons and the simple certainty we knew at that stage is comforting (see chapter 5). Escobar has a gift for honoring the spiritual lives of others. She knows that even as we change and grow, something is lost from the ‘faith’ we had and it is worth grieving and appreciating. The reflection questions at the end of each chapter allowed me to explore how the theme of the book and make sense of some of my own story.When I began this book, I felt like I wasn’t exactly her intended audience. Most of the faith shifts she describes were movements from conservative Evangelical to something more progressive (or beyond). Like Escobar and her tribe, I too began my spiritual journey as part of a conservative evangelical church. Currently, I pastor one. I have made some denominational and doctrinal shifts along the way but still hold to the central doctrines I was raised with. I hold some issues far looser but I also feel more certain about the aspects of faith I regard as essential. Still my own faith journey parallels Escobar’s stages. I moved from a narrow version of evangelicalism to one that is more generous and values freedom, diversity and mystery. I think a lot of of what Escobar says will be instructive for anyone moving from a rudimentary faith toward spiritual maturity (not that I necessarily have arrived there yet!) Faith Shift is first and foremost about spiritual and personal growth.Escobar places no judgment on the outcome of a faith shift. You can move from fundamentalist to agnostic and in so doing, experience more freedom and authenticity. That is growth, and in many respects, growth in the right direction. However, I’m not sure that I want to relativize all aspects of ‘faith.’ I think it is possible to move towards a belief system that is healthier but falser (or as false). The stages that Escobar describes are individualized and allow each shifter to decide what they still believe:Each person’s journey is unique. While I know some people who are no longer certain of the divinity of Christ, others hold strongly to this belief. While some believe the Bible might be inaccurate and therefore loses parts of his authority, others still believe it is inerrant and take it extremely seriously. While some may have five or more things they still firmly believe, others may have only one. (143)I am enough of a Pietist to believe we each have to own our own faith, but I am not a relativist and and put a higher premium on (capital T) Truth in our spiritual quest. I certainly agree with her that many, whose faith has unraveled, need to pursue growth outside of the communities they are no longer a part of. Honest, vulnerable doubt is preferable to quiet pretense. But personally I hold out hope for God’s self revelation in Christ as a shining star in the midst of our wilderness wanderings.If you forgive me my Evangelical quibbles, I think this is a very good book and I am grateful for Escobar’s insights. In the spiritual life we need more openness to mystery and wonder and less slavish obedience to some imposed standard. If it takes a faith shift to open us up into a new way of exploring God and fatih, I am in favor. I give this four stars. ★★★★☆Notice of material connection, I received a review copy of this book for the purposes of this review.
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  • Irm
    January 1, 1970
    Important Read for Our TimesWhile my shift was not as dramatic as many in this book, I kept thinking of all the people I want to tell to read it. Our country is in a crazy period of divisiveness and I'm sure that it's causing many more shifts. We will survive and God is still God.
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  • Carolyn
    January 1, 1970
    A book that resonated deeply, especially in the first half - indicating that I'm probably not at the rebuilding stage yet. She charts the different stages of a faith journey very well, going back to the first fire of coming to faith and then onwards to what happens as we possibly begin to shift and unravel. She then goes on to look at the way forward, or back, allowing that for everyone the journey is different. Many of her examples are people who lost faith entirely and are making or have made A book that resonated deeply, especially in the first half - indicating that I'm probably not at the rebuilding stage yet. She charts the different stages of a faith journey very well, going back to the first fire of coming to faith and then onwards to what happens as we possibly begin to shift and unravel. She then goes on to look at the way forward, or back, allowing that for everyone the journey is different. Many of her examples are people who lost faith entirely and are making or have made peace with that. Others are those whose faith has shifted or changed for a massive variety of reasons from intellectual challenge through personal circumstances and church issues. There is comfort in this, in seeing that none of us is alone in our experience, we aren't necessarily weird or sinful for asking questions and doubting much if not all of what we have been taught. I like how Escobar makes clear that all journeys are individual and unique and emphasis taking time and caring for your self and your soul at each stage. I like how she makes note of the positives, both in the things, or one thing, we are still sure of and in finding things to be thankful for in our past. I did find difficult her emphasis that wherever we end up, that is ok, although in a book of this nature that is to be expected, but the total pluralism and almost anything goes openness to outcome, even a different religion or atheism as well as other forms of spirituality was troublesome for me. Overall however this book was so filled with 'oh yes' moments and with thoughts about the process that made do much sense to me, that I would highly recommend it for anyone who finds themselves or their friends/family in a faith shift.
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  • Justin
    January 1, 1970
    While the concepts in this book are not new to me by any stretch, it was amazingly helpful and refreshing for three reasons - 1) It affirmed that 'You're not crazy, and you're not alone.' That's always refreshing. 2) It gave vocabulary and nomenclature to something that the vast majority of us, myself included, have a hard time articulating. 3) It provides a framework for discussion, processing, healing, etc etc for anyone for whom the content applies. These all made it very applicable and usefu While the concepts in this book are not new to me by any stretch, it was amazingly helpful and refreshing for three reasons - 1) It affirmed that 'You're not crazy, and you're not alone.' That's always refreshing. 2) It gave vocabulary and nomenclature to something that the vast majority of us, myself included, have a hard time articulating. 3) It provides a framework for discussion, processing, healing, etc etc for anyone for whom the content applies. These all made it very applicable and useful.As the title implies, it is about a shifting/evolving/changing spiritual journey, which is something that I've been on for years. While I generally don't like to talk about my spiritual journey, it is a huge part of me, and this book helped me feel a lot more comfortable talking about it. Usually, I've not wanted to talk about it with non-Christians because anything smacking of Christianity is generally derided as judgy, exclusionist, self-righteous, and generally about as welcome as telling someone you have an infectious disease. I also don't like discussing what my journey has been like with Christians, because of all the same reasons - just the other side of the coin. It doesn't fit in with prescribed norms of thought or behavior, therefore, gets judged, excluded, and ignored in huff of self-righteous rejection.So, the fact that this book was written for working through exactly this kind of situation, or situations similar, is fantastic. I definitely recommend this book for anyone who has questioned their faith in any way, or is confused, lonely, curious, scared, other adjectives, etc.
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  • Kim Murden
    January 1, 1970
    Initially a little disappointed but really only because I adore KE's blog writing and I didn't think this had the immediacy or the passion of that genre.However saying that I have found this book challenging on many levels. Without me initially realising it issues were raised for me that I had been ignoring and now my husband and I are working through the questions together in the pub on a Saturday night. As well as giving voice to a story we have never really told we're learning things that we Initially a little disappointed but really only because I adore KE's blog writing and I didn't think this had the immediacy or the passion of that genre.However saying that I have found this book challenging on many levels. Without me initially realising it issues were raised for me that I had been ignoring and now my husband and I are working through the questions together in the pub on a Saturday night. As well as giving voice to a story we have never really told we're learning things that we assumed about each other but never spoke as well as things we never knew before. This book is a good thing.
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  • glenn boyes
    January 1, 1970
    What do I say? I have been in a faith shift for years. Life has brought it about. I have been angry through far too much of it. In the last year, I have realized that anger was not healthy for me. I've began trying to express my "faith shift" in the positives (still in a early stage, but the shift has happened). Thankful for the "picture" of the faith shift that has helped clarify so much for me. Kathy Escobar's book is a must read for anyone experiencing this, or for those who don't understand What do I say? I have been in a faith shift for years. Life has brought it about. I have been angry through far too much of it. In the last year, I have realized that anger was not healthy for me. I've began trying to express my "faith shift" in the positives (still in a early stage, but the shift has happened). Thankful for the "picture" of the faith shift that has helped clarify so much for me. Kathy Escobar's book is a must read for anyone experiencing this, or for those who don't understand the journey of those for whom it has become a reality.
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  • Rylie
    January 1, 1970
    I read quite a few books while I was both lost, and expanding on my spiritual journey. Sometimes growth makes us feel like we don't know the way, at all. This book put what was in my brain in to thoughts that I both understood and that helped me bring a bit of direction in to my meandering, spiritual path.
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  • Kerstin
    January 1, 1970
    I found it fascinating to read the faith shifts from people of different faiths. I had no idea there were so many of us from so many faiths with so many differing backgrounds, who are all undergoing faith shifts, seemingly at the same time. So interesting.
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  • Kate
    January 1, 1970
    I'm not 100% sure this book wasn't written specifically for me. It's like the author hijacked my brain and then wrote about everything she found there. It is both eerie and deeply refreshing.
  • Benjamin Vineyard
    January 1, 1970
    An approachable, permission giving book about displacement, disruption, and disillusion that happens in our religious life. Escobar's anecdotes often spoke of people hurt by the church as an institution, especially in biblicistic, evangelical places. Her book gives permission to step away from those deadening places and to embrace a spiritual-religious way of life that is more inclusive of divine mystery, paradox, and vulnerability within community (which might also be called a genuine sense of An approachable, permission giving book about displacement, disruption, and disillusion that happens in our religious life. Escobar's anecdotes often spoke of people hurt by the church as an institution, especially in biblicistic, evangelical places. Her book gives permission to step away from those deadening places and to embrace a spiritual-religious way of life that is more inclusive of divine mystery, paradox, and vulnerability within community (which might also be called a genuine sense of human struggle shared in confession and forgiveness). Escobar's spiritual-religious community, "The Refuge," celebrates ten values. These are a helpful map for what an embracing community can be. They might be signs of the future church, of what remains after The Great Departure. She lists:1. Nature2. Our sences3. Ritual and Liturgy4. Silence and solitude5. Activism 6. Caring for others7. Mystery and celebration8. Contemplation9. Our minds10. Recovery (p.156)The core of Escobar's book is the presentation of stages of faith, struggle, or "shift," as the title goes. These are described well by Escobar. I find myself wanting to explore similar concepts or dig into some of Escobar's sources. The stages Escobar presents are:A. FusingB. ShiftingC. ReturningD. UnravelingE. SeveringF. RebuildingI have residual questions from my reading. What about "orthodoxy?" Is there an ancient, centered confession of faith that the Scriptures speak to that can be presented without oppression or verbal violence? Can orthodoxy and open, authentic questions dwell together without forced resolve? (Is there such a thing as true "orthodoxy?")I appreciate St. John of the Cross and his writings. His telling of dark nights of the senses and the spirit have formed a classic understanding of change, shift or development in the soul. Yet unlike Escobar's examples, John speaks of these as coming directly from God. The sensation is similar to what Escobar's examples spoke of, except Escobar's modern examples focused more on disenfranchisement with the church as an organization or people. Many of Escobar's examples were reactionary to experience in community. John of the Cross says such times of renovation may be divine. I wanted to read more about John's perspective in Escobar's book, in part because John of the Cross is hard to understand and I've had to lean on Thomas Merton to understand much.Might there be a place to talk about the old language of spiritual growth in this topic, a path that walked from awakening through purgation toward illumination and resting in union? If so, Escobar's book speaks a lot about the purgation process.
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  • Red
    January 1, 1970
    Man, this was a good book. Well, it was less of a book and more of a general, gentle guide to finding out your faith is falling apart (in my case because of Science and LGBT rights, and then like pulling a thread out of a rug, pretty much everything unraveling). I was lucky to have a good friend who supported me when everything started crashing down - and then twice as lucky to find a good church where questions like the ones raised here were welcomed and I was not judged for asking why or sayin Man, this was a good book. Well, it was less of a book and more of a general, gentle guide to finding out your faith is falling apart (in my case because of Science and LGBT rights, and then like pulling a thread out of a rug, pretty much everything unraveling). I was lucky to have a good friend who supported me when everything started crashing down - and then twice as lucky to find a good church where questions like the ones raised here were welcomed and I was not judged for asking why or saying maybe I don't believe in a lot of things anymore. I found this book after I was pretty deep into the process already, but the author lays out the stages of a faith shift in a really understandable way and I thought - aha, yes, I went through that stage and this stage, and gee, here I am at this one.It was comforting to me to find out that I'm not alone, that this isn't an uncommon process - the book both Kathy's experience with it and examples of many people Kathy helped through a similar process. I liked all the discussion questions at the end of each chapter - I'd like to work through them sometimes, just to have a record of my own journey, but I am not quite at that point where I want to.I can see the value of reading this again in another year or two as I keep on this journey.
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  • Matthew
    January 1, 1970
    Really enjoyed hearing from this perspective. It is definitely a very particular perspective (despite the author's attempts to be very inclusive), but one which a lot of people that might be described as faith shifters relate to. While I don't share the postmodern worldview this book is written from, I do believe it represents a necessary challenge to the conservative and fundamentalist worldviews, exposing areas where we have distorted truth into an unhealthy cage that has hurt far too many peo Really enjoyed hearing from this perspective. It is definitely a very particular perspective (despite the author's attempts to be very inclusive), but one which a lot of people that might be described as faith shifters relate to. While I don't share the postmodern worldview this book is written from, I do believe it represents a necessary challenge to the conservative and fundamentalist worldviews, exposing areas where we have distorted truth into an unhealthy cage that has hurt far too many people. This book was written as encouragement to those recovering from church--for me it was a challenge to put myself in their shoes and try to make the church a more hospitable space where people can truly be free to be authentic and express their passions, questions, and doubts.
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  • Tawni Winns
    January 1, 1970
    A breath of fresh air I'm so glad I found this book. It's been a huge help and it came at just the right time. For a while there I felt like I'd always be lost while I was trying to figure out my faith. This book gave me my hope back. I recommend it to anyone who has broken from the church and Christianity and needs some help.
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  • Karen Autrey
    January 1, 1970
    Very interesting book on how to navigate when your faith may change during your life. Lots of questions, thoughts and ideas. I would like to check out this woman's church the next time I go to Denver.
  • Brenda Torres
    January 1, 1970
    This book is more geared toward the person who is struggling with faith in the sense of what they believe about God, rather than those just struggling with the institutional church. So in that regard I struggled to relate to most of the material.
  • Megan
    January 1, 1970
    This book gives some various ideas on what to do when your faith unravels. It gives a lot of spiritual practices you could use. I found it very informative and helpful.
  • jean eger
    January 1, 1970
    Wonderful to know that I am not alone.
  • Tricia
    January 1, 1970
    This is an excellent book for any Christian person whose faith has unraveled, is unraveling or one with doubts (probably all of us if we are honest). It is honest and real and hopeful.
  • Annette Maclean
    January 1, 1970
    Faith Shift is a book that holds your hand and guides you through the disorientating process of deconstructing and (maybe) reconstructing your faith. This is the second time I've read this book in the last 6 months. The first time I was at the "Shifting" stage, I'm now further into the "Unravelling" stage and feel hopeful about the "Rebuilding" stage. Apart from the last couple of chapters which have a stronger focus on those who have been part of an abusive church system (which I have not), I f Faith Shift is a book that holds your hand and guides you through the disorientating process of deconstructing and (maybe) reconstructing your faith. This is the second time I've read this book in the last 6 months. The first time I was at the "Shifting" stage, I'm now further into the "Unravelling" stage and feel hopeful about the "Rebuilding" stage. Apart from the last couple of chapters which have a stronger focus on those who have been part of an abusive church system (which I have not), I feel as though much of this book could have been written just for me. It is very gentle and nurturing in tone and is wonderfully reassuring. Would recommend to anyone experiencing a faith shift, but also to family/friends of those who are in such a place.
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  • BHodges
    January 1, 1970
    Escobar's book is a practical guide that describes the process of encountering a crisis of faith. The book follows a trajectory from an early mode of faith called Fusing—characterized by reliance on certainty, affiliation, and conformity—to a period of Shifting, where a believer might begin to question certain teachings, feel alienated from the community, or otherwise come to experience difficulty in their church experience. At this point, some people manage to return to their earlier foundation Escobar's book is a practical guide that describes the process of encountering a crisis of faith. The book follows a trajectory from an early mode of faith called Fusing—characterized by reliance on certainty, affiliation, and conformity—to a period of Shifting, where a believer might begin to question certain teachings, feel alienated from the community, or otherwise come to experience difficulty in their church experience. At this point, some people manage to return to their earlier foundational faith, while others encounter a period of Unraveling. This stage is basically when values like autonomy, authenticity, and uncertainty come to rule the mind. This state of affairs can lead people to sever ties with faith altogether or with a particular religious community (two options she does not dismiss as unrighteous or inappropriate), and in some cases it is permanent. In other cases, a process of Rebuilding begins where the believer still feels some sort of draw to faith, renegotiates former beliefs, looks for new ways to understand and experience God, and appreciates the feelings of freedom, mystery, and diversity that accompanies their new outlook. She doesn't paper over the real pain that accompanies such changes, nor does she depict this process as uniform. She also tries to but doesn't entirely avoid giving the impression that those who go through large faith shifts arrive at a healthier/better position. Style-wise, it reads sort of like a popular self-help book, including some cheesy cliches and slogans, which isn't really my preferred mode. It also caters mostly to evangelical or non-denominational Christianity, and doesn't explore reasons why such faith transitions are unique to Christianity or similar to/different from other religious outlooks. It is heavily focused on feelings, which I think gets more to the heart of the matter than a lot of Q&A apologetic style books. Honestly, it isn't really my style of a book, and I almost gave it three stars but I don't want to deflate its rating just because of my personal aesthetic tastes. The book would be useful not only to those undergoing their own shifts of faith, but to friends and family of people whose faith changes. Faith isn't a solitary thing, so changes impact more than the individual believer. The book concludes with tips for spouses, friends, family of people undergoing faith shifts, as well as tips to the shifters on how to maintain relationships through their own process of change. I wish members of my own church had a practical book like this to help navigate faith shifts written in their native language, as this one is written in the tongue of non-denom Christianity. (She does refer to a few Mormon examples in the book, but they are just few and far between.)
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  • Casey
    January 1, 1970
    I would most definitely recommend this to anyone going through a faith shift. If you have questions about your religion, and need an outside voice providing some clarity, this is definitely the book for you. It allows you to think about your personal experience without feeling like you have to conform to someone else's idea of how you should feel/think/act at this point. Faith Shift is all about finding what is right for you right now, whether that be remaining in your church, leaving religion e I would most definitely recommend this to anyone going through a faith shift. If you have questions about your religion, and need an outside voice providing some clarity, this is definitely the book for you. It allows you to think about your personal experience without feeling like you have to conform to someone else's idea of how you should feel/think/act at this point. Faith Shift is all about finding what is right for you right now, whether that be remaining in your church, leaving religion entirely, or staying in organized religion, but on your own terms. This book is for those described here, in a quote from the book: "For all kinds of reasons, many of us begin to experience a slow--or sometimes dramatic--shift in how we relate to God and the church. We hit a significant spiritual barrier and things stop working in the ways we are used to. Our connection with God wanes, and we can't seem to pray. Our hearts begin to feel dead. We start to feel resentful. We stop caring about church, and events and programs lose their attraction. We notice inconsistencies in leadership and theology that never occurred to us before. We become ambivalent, apathetic, or feel hints of anger and fear in deep places of our souls."Here are some of my favorite quotes (I would give page numbers, but I read the Kindle version):"God invites us to be in motion, but often the faith systems we are part of don't.""I want less religion in my life and more justice, mercy, purpose, and love.""The spiritual life does not remove us from the world but leads us deeper into it.""...faith shifts are healing pilgrimages, journeys to uncover deep truths.""I still believe in God's love, but the box I put his love into has definitely been ripped to shreds." --Leslie"Unraveling is like a game of spiritual Jenga."And so many more.
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  • Violinknitter
    January 1, 1970
    Four stars might be a bit high for this book... I'm glad I read it, but I was hoping for a bit more meat than was here. Several chapters were very helpful, and other chapters just felt like pop-psychology lite. But perhaps I was being continually annoyed by the discussion questions at the end of each chapter. I loathe discussion questions being included at the end of chapters in books. If I wanted textbooks, I would go back to school! I am not ten... I know how to process reading material! (Actu Four stars might be a bit high for this book... I'm glad I read it, but I was hoping for a bit more meat than was here. Several chapters were very helpful, and other chapters just felt like pop-psychology lite. But perhaps I was being continually annoyed by the discussion questions at the end of each chapter. I loathe discussion questions being included at the end of chapters in books. If I wanted textbooks, I would go back to school! I am not ten... I know how to process reading material! (Actually, I knew how to do so by age ten, thank you very much.) If you love discussion questions and they don't make you immediately feel talked down to, please ignore my ravings. I'm a quirky reader. What would have made the book stronger, from my perspective, is fuller stories from the faith shifters Escobar mentions in her book. She references so many people and their journeys, but then gives the most cursory of glancing descriptions of their journeys & struggles. I understand this to some extent... the stories aren't hers to tell. But the constant cheerful "this wonderful person who I like a lot experienced sadness while faith shifting and now works with the homeless" felt trite instead of helpful. I doubt Escobar was trying to be trite, but it came across that way to me. All that aside, the book is worth a read.
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  • Andrea
    January 1, 1970
    The amount of underlining I did in this book clearly indicates the degree to which it resonated with me. In so many places I found Escobar saying things that reflected so closely what I have experienced in the past couple years or am experiencing currently. I appreciate the roadmap she offers to those walking through a transition in their faith, one that is not prescriptive but descriptive, based not only on her own experience but on those of many others with whom she has interacted over the yea The amount of underlining I did in this book clearly indicates the degree to which it resonated with me. In so many places I found Escobar saying things that reflected so closely what I have experienced in the past couple years or am experiencing currently. I appreciate the roadmap she offers to those walking through a transition in their faith, one that is not prescriptive but descriptive, based not only on her own experience but on those of many others with whom she has interacted over the years. Some may question the value of Escobar's book because she doesn't offer the formula for people to recover what they have lost, but such people misunderstand the whole perspective from with Escobar writes. This is not a book for everyone, but I would highly recommend it both for those who are somewhere in the process of a faith transition, as well as for those who know someone in such a transition.
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  • Rachel Martin
    January 1, 1970
    I was rather late to read this book, but found it both helpful and inspiring. Kathy Escobar explains that it's not a memoir, a how-to or a self help book, but in many ways it is a little hard to categorise - she describes it as a pathway to transformation for those who have experienced a 'faith shift'. The blend of narrative, research information, teaching and thought provoking questions make this an engaging and encouraging read. I haven't personally undergone a 'faith shift' - and that would b I was rather late to read this book, but found it both helpful and inspiring. Kathy Escobar explains that it's not a memoir, a how-to or a self help book, but in many ways it is a little hard to categorise - she describes it as a pathway to transformation for those who have experienced a 'faith shift'. The blend of narrative, research information, teaching and thought provoking questions make this an engaging and encouraging read. I haven't personally undergone a 'faith shift' - and that would be one criticism of this book, it perhaps overly emphasises the path of a dramatic shift or change, which many Christians don't experience. I did however, find the book thought provoking, and I will recommend it to friends for whom the message may resonate even more.I received a digital copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Joan
    January 1, 1970
    As I noted in the review I placed on my blog, this is not an evangelical book. Escobar writes about losing faith and then rebuilding. But it is not necessary, Escobar writes, to rebuild to what I would call evangelical faith. Eternal damnation is not an issue, she says. All that being said, I think this is a valuable book for those who want to know what people leaving faith are experiencing. Escobar has created a faith shift model that I think is valuable. I would recommend this book to those wh As I noted in the review I placed on my blog, this is not an evangelical book. Escobar writes about losing faith and then rebuilding. But it is not necessary, Escobar writes, to rebuild to what I would call evangelical faith. Eternal damnation is not an issue, she says. All that being said, I think this is a valuable book for those who want to know what people leaving faith are experiencing. Escobar has created a faith shift model that I think is valuable. I would recommend this book to those who are interested in understanding the process.See my complete review at http://bit.ly/11ROewo.I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.
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  • Kari
    January 1, 1970
    This book knows exactly who its audience is: people who are experiencing a crisis of faith and who need help figuring out the next step. My husband and I could have used a book like this a few years ago as we navigated many of the steps that Escobar talks about - breaking away from old ideas and trying to forge a new identity. I found the first part of the book a little bit dry as she talked about the stages of faith but the second half that focused on rebuilding was soothing and encouraging. Ou This book knows exactly who its audience is: people who are experiencing a crisis of faith and who need help figuring out the next step. My husband and I could have used a book like this a few years ago as we navigated many of the steps that Escobar talks about - breaking away from old ideas and trying to forge a new identity. I found the first part of the book a little bit dry as she talked about the stages of faith but the second half that focused on rebuilding was soothing and encouraging. Our faith should live and grow with us, and when it feels as if it is lost, it would be nice to have a guidebook like what Escobar has written here. We worked out many of these stages on our own or with the help of our community, but for those who aren't so lucky, I recommend this book.
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    Faith Shift was definitely an interesting read however in reading some of the personal stories in the book, I realized that my own faith shift was kind of anti climatic in comparison. There was more of a fizzling out rather than a severing in my own story. There were a few hurts along the way out of my church but I think because I came from and still have the support of a very open minded family and have diverse open minded friends, those hurts didn't have anywhere near the impact they might hav Faith Shift was definitely an interesting read however in reading some of the personal stories in the book, I realized that my own faith shift was kind of anti climatic in comparison. There was more of a fizzling out rather than a severing in my own story. There were a few hurts along the way out of my church but I think because I came from and still have the support of a very open minded family and have diverse open minded friends, those hurts didn't have anywhere near the impact they might have otherwise. For these reasons, I didn't find the book resonated quite as deeply for me as it surely has for some. I definitely appreciate Kathy's hard work and writing to support those struggling more with their faith shifting.
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  • Wade
    January 1, 1970
    When your Christian faith doesn't support you or work for you anymore, you usually need someone to say "that's okay". For those looking for support in that process, this book is a useful guide through the general path.There is only one criticism I have for this book, and that is that it is firmly planted in the monotheistic point-of-view of much of modern western society. Generally, the assumption is that the person reading either wants to find a different way of being churched in Christianity, When your Christian faith doesn't support you or work for you anymore, you usually need someone to say "that's okay". For those looking for support in that process, this book is a useful guide through the general path.There is only one criticism I have for this book, and that is that it is firmly planted in the monotheistic point-of-view of much of modern western society. Generally, the assumption is that the person reading either wants to find a different way of being churched in Christianity, or wants to leave it completely. There is no mention of finding another spiritual path. That said, however, this book is otherwise very good at showing those on this path that they are not the first and will not be the last to do so.
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  • Esther
    January 1, 1970
    Sometimes a book is perfect because of timing, and that's what this book has been for me. Until I started reading this book, I felt so alone and lost. But I am not alone, I am in great company, and though I don't know what everything in my faith and life will look like from here, I know my next step and am beginning to process my faith shift within a framework.Kathy is a gentle and sensitive writer who also challenged me in careful and appropriate ways. And I love that this book is filled with t Sometimes a book is perfect because of timing, and that's what this book has been for me. Until I started reading this book, I felt so alone and lost. But I am not alone, I am in great company, and though I don't know what everything in my faith and life will look like from here, I know my next step and am beginning to process my faith shift within a framework.Kathy is a gentle and sensitive writer who also challenged me in careful and appropriate ways. And I love that this book is filled with the stories of all kinds of people who've been on this path before me, and who've come to different conclusions about where it leads them.
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