Living Memory & The Emerging Church

For the community that is the Church, there are contrasting ways of viewing the past.

The Church, as we rediscovers the past, and ideally re-invest our contemporary worship with its riches, can either look on the past with Dismissal, Nostalgia or Living Memory.

Dismissive Memory looks lightly at the past, but with disregard and disdain, seeing only the riches of the present and the future.

Nostalgic Memory looks heavily at the past with longing, desiring to conform the present and the future to the memory of the past.

Living Memory looks thoughtfully at the past with appreciation, drawing from it to inform and strengthen the present and the future.

We must look at the past with Living Memory, and allow it to shape, form and enhance an ever-changing present and future.

If one definition of culture is indeed defined as “corporate memory,” then we must look at both yesterday and today with a humble, yet critical eye, and bring aid to the corporate memory of tomorrow — by being radically present to the world of today.


Sheltering Mercy and Endless Grace help us rediscover the rich treasures of the Psalms—through free-verse prayer renderings of their poems and hymns—as a guide to personal devotion and meditation. Sheltering Mercy helps the reader pray Psalms 1-75; Endless Grace leads in prayer through Psalms 76-150.

The church has always used the Psalms as part of its prayer life, and they have inspired countless other prayers. Each book contains 75 prayers drawn from the Book of Psalms, providing lyrical sketches of what authors Ryan Smith and Dan Wilt have seen, heard, and felt while sojourning there. Each prayer is a response to the Psalms written in harmony with Scripture. These prayers help us quiet our hearts before God and welcome us into a safe place amid the storms of life.

These artful, poetic, and classic devotional books are a perfect gift, and feature compelling stunning illustrations and hardcover binding, offering a fresh way to reflect on and pray the Psalms. Co-written with Ryan Whitaker Smith, Brazos Publishing.

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