"They're all so scattered, and there's no place for them to come together." I keep hearing that about people who've tried to find their way after leaving a church--especially an evangelical church--or wanting to keep faith without religion, or find community. And it's true, it's so easy to feel like you're alone.
Take heart, whether your an exvangelical, a none and done, deconstructing your faith or just looking to grow your faith without all the bad baggage, you are on a common journey. The fact is, there are more people than ever, just like you, who are shifting their faith. There's also more good info and more friends out there than you'd think.
The below is a work in progress list to help you get informed and connected. I guarantee that if you keep at it, you're going to expand your horizons and develop a robust sense of what's spiritual and sacred for your actual life today.
A a well-written, richly conceived book can lead your head and heart to new places in a lasting way. I'm including a variety of books that inspire and deeply inform. Keep reading, then do some more, and more after that. And I mean it, as it's worked for me, too. All that reading adds up.
These ten amazing books, in no particular order, tell stories of questioning faith and religion. You'll surely find some good companions here. I've got a list here of my five favorite books that are pretty hard hitting on losing faith, so this is just more great and helpful reading and some of it more recent, and by authors you might enjoy following:
General Nonfiction for Seekers
For a really extensive list of general nonfiction books, I love this list for the spiritually lost millennial Christian from Listopia on Goodreads. Although "spiritually lost" can be a good thing in this context.
Power Packed Deeper Dives into the Context
The below grouping will help you understand that there are so many forces of which you may be unaware are at work on your individual faith. In other words, the contents of your faith can be more psychologically, socially, and historically determined than you, or others, might realize. These books are denser reads, but what they do is help you get past the trite ways of understanding faith, help you see the specifics and stop arguing about the same things over and over. These books specifically attempt to comprehensively cover the topic and are just simple representatives of different fields or approaches.
Psychology of Religion
The Mind of the Bible Believer, Edward D. Cohen
Sociology of Religion
After Heaven: Spirituality in American Since the 1950s, Robert Wuthnow
History of Religion in America
The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America, by Frances FitzGerald
Religion in American Life: A Short History, by Jon Butler, Grant Wacker, and Randall Balmer
Philosophy of Religion:
After Evangelicalism: The Path to a New Christianity, David P. Gushee
Online Resources for Progressive Christianity and Deconstructing Faith