Item description for Becoming Adult, Becoming Christian : Adult Development and Christian Faith by James W. Fowler...
Overview In this updated reissue of his 1984 classic, James Fowler applies his groundbreaking research on the development of faith to Christianity. In his revised first chapter Fowler locates his approach to the study of human and faith development in relation to the contemporary conversation about identity and selfhood in postmodernity. Fowler invites readers to explore what it means to find and claim vocation: a purpose for one's life that is part of the purposes of God. Reclaiming covenant and vocation as ideals for responsible, mature, Christian selfhood, Fowler shows how a dynamic understanding of what vocation involves can both inform and transform lives.
Publishers Description An updated reissue of the 1984 classic in the field of Christian formation from James W. Fowler. Fowler examines several influential theories of adult development and investigates biblical and Christian perspectives on covenant and vocation. Bringing these investigations together, in light of his own work on faith development, he proposes that becoming adult and becoming Christian both involve an ongoing process of conversion. This process is one from self-groundedness and the pursuit of one's destiny towards receiving and claiming one's life in vocation and partnership with God. Reclaiming covenant and vocation as ideals for responsible, mature, Christian selfhood, he shows how a dynamic understanding of vocation can both inform and transform our lives.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.58" Width: 5.94" Height: 0.41" Weight: 0.44 lbs.
Release Date Nov 26, 1999
ISBN 078795134X ISBN13 9780787951344
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More About James W. Fowler
JAMES W. FOWLER is Charles Howard Candler professor of theology and human development and director of Emory University's Center for Ethics in Public Policy and the Professions.
James W. Fowler currently resides in Atlanta, in the state of Georgia. James W. Fowler was born in 1940.
James W. Fowler has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Becoming Adult, Becoming Christian : Adult Development and Christian Faith?
Too deep, for a newby. Jul 25, 2007
I was hoping that this book would be more basic in the approach to faith development, but it read like a thesis. He interacted with many of the leading voices, but I was too new to this study to engage completely. There are some helpful elements, but unless you are well versed in this field, the book will be over your head.
An academic text that eventually gets to the point! Jan 9, 2007
This book is definitely academic. Perhaps not as academic as Fowler's other books in that it seems ostensibly to be written for layperson, student or educator. However, (and I write this as an academic myself) Fowler seems unable to break free of the academic genre. The book reads like fellow academics were the audience in mind. The standard dance of academic writing is engaged in, everything meticulously argued out using the language of the discipline. All fine and good, but it might tend to lose the layperson. It certainly lost me. Fowler eventually gets to the point, that the key to finding our vocation lies not within us, in our own hopes, desires and needs, but in the faith (and wider) community to which we belong. We need to be outward looking rather than inward looking to find our true vocation. What I said in the last sentence takes Fowler a whole chapter to say. At times I thought he was spinning it out to knock a book out of it, but I genuinely think he can't break out of the mould of the academic writing genre. Nonetheless, I'm glad I read this book, as despite its form, its content is a message worth hearing.
Great Jan 4, 2007
This was a great resource in my college studies and my college aged children have read it for personal reference. Quoted in many of other readings I've done on Christian worldviews.
Reconcilating Fowler's 'Faith' and Christian 'Faith' Jan 15, 2006
Fowler's Faith Development Theory is commonly being used to describe Christian spiritual growth. Yet, when it was first formulated, Fowler described faith as `seeking meaning in our lives' and universal, thus not limited to Christianity. This theory, which arise out of Piaget's cognitive and Kohlberg's moral development theories are descriptive and did not take into consideration the supernatural/spiritual.
This book was Fowler's attempt to reconcile his development theory to the Christian theological concept of salvation and sanctification. His approach to integrate this is by the concept of vocation which `is the response a person makes with his or her total self to the address of God and to the calling to partnership'. He defined this partnership as synergy between the human potential and the work of the Spirit which he called `grace'. Fowler defined blockage to this synergy as sin and unblocking this synergy as salvation. The aim of this partnership is `in God's work in the world' which Fowler elaborated as partnership with God the Creator, with the governing action of God and in the liberative and redemptive action of God. However, what Fowler was describing are a series of behavioural pattern. Any description of spiritual growth must include a new creation, inner transformation and fruit of the Holy Spirit. One needs to differentiate between descriptors and contents.
Fowler then went on to describe vocation, relationship of vocation and Christian communities and the Christian story. While I agree that our vocation is a call by God for His purpose, I do wish Fowler had explained how the different stages of his theory can be directly linked to the redemptive work of Jesus on the cross, justification by faith and the work of the Holy Spirit to sanctify us into Christian maturity (Christ-likeness). In the final chapter, he did try again to integrate spiritual maturity and development theories but surprisingly, he used Levinson's seasons of life theory instead of his own. In the end, Fowler did not give a clear picture of the integration of his faith development theory and theology.
Ideas come of age Oct 24, 2005
This is a summary of Fowler's theory of the development of faith, and it reflects the clarity and completeness of an idea that has matured and been shaken down to the basics. Also,the discussion of vocation in the last chapters is inspirational and well articulated.