22 Feb The Faith of Leap – Book Review
The Faith of Leap:
Embracing a Theology of Risk, Adventure & Courage
Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch
Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2011
224 pages, $16.99, paper
Reviewed by Kevin Book-Satterlee
Latin America Mission, Mexico City
In their book The Faith of Leap: Embracing a Theology of Risk, Adventure and Courage they set out to create a theology of risk. In this regard they did not create a theological text, but a work that does take seriously their claim: “All disciples of Jesus (not just a select few) are called to an ongoing, risky, actional, extravagant way of life – a life resonant with that distinctly wild – and yes, Christlike – faithfulness of their Lord and Master.” (17).
Frost and Hirsch cannot be overlooked in regards to the praxis and theology of mission in post-modernity. As pastors and missiologists, they first published their book The Shaping of Things to Come (Hendrickson Publishers), which quickly became a seminal text for the missional church. They collaborated in a second book, ReJesus, and have come together yet again for The Faith of Leap. Between each effort both authors have published books challenging the church to embrace its mission follow Jesus and engage culture with the Gospel.
Hirsch writes in the preface of Faith of Leap, “There is painfully little exploration on the associated subject of risk, liminality, and communitas, and its implications in the life of faith and in leadership.” (13) Yet the authors believe that it is in the wildness, and in the liminal moments that one truly experiences God. It is in communitas that one experiences the church. Christianity needs a renewal of vigor because it serves a dynamic and adventurous God. Liminality in relationship with Christ is essential for true missional ministry. “Liminality is the term [Frost and Hirsch] use to describe a threshold experience…a transitional stage between what was and what is to come.” (19)