A Bigger Table
Building Messy, Authentic, and Hopeful Spiritual Community
by John Pavlovitz
Pub Date 06 Oct 2017
No one likes to eat alone; to approach a table filled with people, only to be told that despite the open chairs there isn’t room for you. The rejection stings. It leaves a mark. Yet this is exactly what the church has been saying to far too many people for far too long: “You’re not welcome here. Find someplace else to sit.” How can we extend unconditional welcome and acceptance in a world increasingly marked by bigotry, fear, and exclusion?
Pastor John Pavlovitz invites readers to join him on the journey to find—or build—a church that is big enough for everyone. He speaks clearly into the heart of the issues the Christian community has been earnestly wrestling with: LGBT inclusion, gender equality, racial tensions, and global concerns. A Bigger Table: Building Messy, Authentic, Hopeful Spiritual Community asks if organized Christianity can find a new way of faithfully continuing the work Jesus began two thousand years ago, where everyone gets a seat.
Pavlovitz shares moving personal stories and his careful observations as a pastor to set the table for a new, more loving conversation on these and other important matters of faith. He invites us to build the bigger table Jesus imagined, practicing radical hospitality, total authenticity, messy diversity, and agenda-free community.
"A Bigger Table offers the very wise reflections of a pastor with a heart like Jesus and a life journey that has led him to reject much of organized American Churchianity. In my role as pastor, I will be working to lead my church toward the four marks of the bigger table that John Pavlovitz recommends: radical hospitality, total authenticity, true diversity, and agenda-free community. I strongly recommend this book!”
—David P. Gushee, author of A Letter to My Anxious Christian Friends
“John Pavlovitz is a modern prophet, a strong, love-demanding and inclusive voice in the post-Trump American wilderness. In A Bigger Table, Pavlovitz delivers a heartfelt, theology-rich call for followers of Jesus to begin thinking about God’s table as a place where all are welcomed. At a time when so many are angry with the church and disillusioned by America’s faith, Pavlovitz’s passionate ‘Table’ offers a hopeful path forward and some much needed nourishment for the weary.”
—Matthew Paul Turner, author of Churched and When God Made You