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What God Wants for Your Life:
Finding Answers to the Deepest Questions

Fred Schmidt's forthcoming book, What God Wants for Your Life: Finding Answers to the Deepest Questions, will be published in June and focuses on one of the fundamental question of existence: How do we know God’s will for our lives?

This question lies at the heart of Christian life. Every day we are required to make important life decisions, but understanding our greater purpose can become a source of frustration and doubt. But this confusion most often stems from misunderstanding God’s role in our day-to-day existence. 

Schmidt calls on “Triage Theology”— doing the best with the tools we have— to tackle the issues that confront us every day.  Contrary to the way so many people approach God when making a big decision—requesting a “sign”—Schmidt says that God does not dispense hard to detect clues from above but, rather, has already equipped us and the Christian community with everything we need to face life’s choices. 

Praise for What God Wants for Your LIfe:

  • One of the most perplexing and enduring religious questions is how to discern God's will in a given situation. This book's blend of mainline Christian theology, biblical exploration and personal stories about probing God's will through spiritual discernment gives grounding for Christians who struggle with that issue. Schmidt—an Episcopal priest and director of spiritual life and formation for the Perkins School of Theology in Dallas—starts the exploration with "God-questions" to "usher us into another way of being, a new way of seeing the word." Most powerful is his chapter on "signs and wonders," which includes his explanation for why he has serious reservations about the practice of looking at every event in our lives as a "sign from God" pointing to a choice we are to make. Schmidt also cautions against thinking of God's will as a fixed and certain "to-do list." So how would he have us discern God's purpose? Listen to and with our lives, love God and enjoy the freedom that comes in using the gifts and graces to make choices. This is an important book on Christian spiritual discernment, especially for those overwhelmed by complicated "discernment processes" or for head-oriented believers who desire a better grasp on what mystical, contemplative types really mean when they talk about listening to God's voice. --Publishers Weekly (June 2005)
     
  • "What does God want for our lives?  Fundamentalists believe that God has a specific plan for every person.  New Age spiritualilty elevates our desires to the level of the Divine.  Frederick Schmidt believes that neither of these extremes is faithful to the biblical story.  Instead, he invites readers to join him on a path of Christian practice to discern life-affirming choices and find the sacred in everyday life.  If you are seeking God's will, this book provides guidance that is both sensible and joyful." --Diana Butler Bass, author of The Practicing Congregation: Imagining a New Old Church
     
  • "This is the most balanced, lucid, and appealing conversation about spiritual direction for thinking Christians that I have seen in many years.  Only a teacher-preacher like Schmidt could have the skills of faith and explication needed to fashion it for us." --Phyllis Tickle, compiler, The Divine Hours
     
  • "I had two strong responses as I read Frederick Schmidt's book. First, I felt that I was sitting with a wise spiritual director ... and I was. Second, I started thinking of people I wanted to share the book with - and I will." -- Rev. Brian McLaren, pastor, Cedar Ridge Community Church, and author of A New Kind of Christian.
     
  • "Here is a book both humble and daring, down-to-earth and spiritually wise in encouraging us to seek God's will for our lives."  --Bishop Frederick Borsch, Professor of New Testament and Chair of Anglican Studies, Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, and author of Spirit Searches Everything