And the Winner Is…

A while back I did a blog on our reprint of So You Don’t Want To Go To Church Anymore, suggesting we might change titles on this book to make it more accessible to others.

We’ve bounced all over this for some time, as did the input we got from many of you. There are pluses and minuses to many different alternatives. While we thought a more ‘fiction-obvious’ title would help describe the book better and connect us with a new audience, in the end we were convinced that the current title best connected us with the audience that would be most encouraged by this book. The “So You Don’t Want to Go to Church Anymore” title has continued to be a link to many, who like Jake, are having their eyes open to the difference between institutional priorities and relational realities.

Shortly after we made our decision, I received the following email that confirmed where we wanted to go with this book. It came from Trisha:

I have just emailed some pals about your book. It’s amazing how God works you know? I was getting fed up of “doing” church after 10 years of faithful serving/attendance etc., and one recent Sunday I decided to “bunk” off (very rare for me)! I said out loud to God, “I do not want to go to church anymore.”

Immediately I sensed God telling me to Google those very words. Yes, to literally type them into the Google search engine! So that is how I came across your book, and am currently enjoying its humour, wise truths and I sense it is bringing real freedom to me.

And hey, it must be nice to know that God himself is promoting your book!

So if God is using the title, what else can we do? Seriously, God has been using it all along to draw the right audience for the book. So in the end, we’ve decided to keep the title as is, though you’ll note by the picture above that we’ve changed the layout dramatically. Rather than the big words saying “Don’t Go to Church”, which some took as a subliminal message. To which my response has been, there was nothing sub-liminal about it. It was clearly liminal! And I think that’s why everyone assumed from the title that the book would contain a lot of ‘church-bashing.’

It wasn’t designed for that at all. It was written to help people find a life in God’s through a freedom from religious shame that they perhaps

Now the big words are “Want Church”, and it has an entirely different feel. And the subtitle has been cut down to just, “an unexpected journey” and is far more readable. Because this book was written for people who hunger to live in the reality of church as God might see her and Jesus is building her, rather than as lifeless institutions.

So, we know that won’t do answer it for everyone. But we’re settled that it is the best solution that we can see today. We’re already ordered a reprint because we’ve only got a couple of cases left and then we’d be out.

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16 Comments
  1. Marti February 3, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    Funny… that is exactly the phrase that my husband Googled years ago, “don’t want to go to church anymore,” and we found the Jake book online before you had finished posting chapters!

    I like it 🙂

  2. todd February 3, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    I’m glad you’re keeping it the same………

    good choice I believe as well………

    todd

  3. Myra Jackson February 3, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    YEA!! I love the title!! I’m a minister’s wife and I don’t know how many times I said to my husband “i’m not going to church anymore” before someone gave me your book. It has resonated so deeply with us that it’s radically changed our lives, changing the church and trusting it to change our community as we join with the movement God is doing toward freedom in Him in this country and around the world. I’m just blessed and stoked to be apart of it. We think ya’ll are the bomb, thanks for being sensitive to the chemist 🙂 To see what you have been a catalyst for in our lives in McMinnville, Tn go to http://www.mmerge.blogspot.com I hope it’s ok that I quoted one of your books on my blog, if it’s not I apologize and I will remove it.
    Grateful for you guys!
    myra

  4. Wayne February 3, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    Hi Myra,

    Yep, you’re free to quote from my books…

    Blessings,

    Wayne

  5. Serghei February 3, 2008 at 2:33 pm

    I like the name. But after all… it’s not even if we like it or not. Name is a keyword for Google, for our impulse when we look at it on shelves. And after we trigged that interest then it’s a question of what’s inside the book :)))

    so, congratulations on making rerpints of your books! It’s great when He helps with marketing, ha? :))

    Have a great journey!

    Serg from Ukraine.

  6. Marti February 3, 2008 at 3:03 pm

    Funny… that is exactly the phrase that my husband Googled years ago, “don’t want to go to church anymore,” and we found the Jake book online before you had finished posting chapters!

    I like it 🙂

  7. cynthia February 3, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    God you are soooooooooooooooooooooo amazing !!!!

  8. todd February 3, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    I’m glad you’re keeping it the same………

    good choice I believe as well………

    todd

  9. Myra Jackson February 3, 2008 at 4:23 pm

    YEA!! I love the title!! I’m a minister’s wife and I don’t know how many times I said to my husband “i’m not going to church anymore” before someone gave me your book. It has resonated so deeply with us that it’s radically changed our lives, changing the church and trusting it to change our community as we join with the movement God is doing toward freedom in Him in this country and around the world. I’m just blessed and stoked to be apart of it. We think ya’ll are the bomb, thanks for being sensitive to the chemist 🙂 To see what you have been a catalyst for in our lives in McMinnville, Tn go to http://www.mmerge.blogspot.com I hope it’s ok that I quoted one of your books on my blog, if it’s not I apologize and I will remove it.
    Grateful for you guys!
    myra

  10. Wayne February 3, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    Hi Myra,

    Yep, you’re free to quote from my books…

    Blessings,

    Wayne

  11. Serghei February 3, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    I like the name. But after all… it’s not even if we like it or not. Name is a keyword for Google, for our impulse when we look at it on shelves. And after we trigged that interest then it’s a question of what’s inside the book :)))

    so, congratulations on making rerpints of your books! It’s great when He helps with marketing, ha? :))

    Have a great journey!

    Serg from Ukraine.

  12. cynthia February 3, 2008 at 7:18 pm

    God you are soooooooooooooooooooooo amazing !!!!

  13. Marjoleine Coetsee February 5, 2008 at 3:43 am

    Yes! Yes! Yes! So glad the title will remain. It is the one and only reason I have stopped “going to church” and have started really “being the church”. That title caught my attention when my cry was “Lord, what is wrong with me? I can’t do this church thing another minute”. I often thank my God for you, Wayne, and may Father lead you and no other voice!

    Sincerely

    Marjoleine

  14. Marjoleine Coetsee February 5, 2008 at 6:43 am

    Yes! Yes! Yes! So glad the title will remain. It is the one and only reason I have stopped “going to church” and have started really “being the church”. That title caught my attention when my cry was “Lord, what is wrong with me? I can’t do this church thing another minute”. I often thank my God for you, Wayne, and may Father lead you and no other voice!

    Sincerely

    Marjoleine

  15. mtash February 7, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    That’s really neat, Wayne. About four years ago I googled “don’t go to church anymore” and found the Bodylife article, “Why I don’t go to church anymore”. If I remember correctly, the article was a blog entry at that time? Back then I had a habit of using google’s blog search function in an attempt to find people who were searching like I was (and still am). I read and bookmarked the article and e-mailed it to my family. I checked back very infrequently–I think because I worried that your Bridge Builders association was an ecumenical thing and that you believed all religions were ok. Obviously I misunderstood. Anyway, I came back eventually and found The God Journey and began listening to the podcasts when I had time. I also bought “So you don’t want to go to church anymore”, read it and loaned it to my family but nothing really came of it. Well, just a few months ago, my family met some believers nearby who told them about The Shack and what do you know but my family came back to me saying, “Have you heard about this book?! We want to order “So you dont’ want to go to church anymore”!”, I said, go check you bookshelf, I’ve already loaned it to you.

  16. mtash February 7, 2008 at 11:06 pm

    That’s really neat, Wayne. About four years ago I googled “don’t go to church anymore” and found the Bodylife article, “Why I don’t go to church anymore”. If I remember correctly, the article was a blog entry at that time? Back then I had a habit of using google’s blog search function in an attempt to find people who were searching like I was (and still am). I read and bookmarked the article and e-mailed it to my family. I checked back very infrequently–I think because I worried that your Bridge Builders association was an ecumenical thing and that you believed all religions were ok. Obviously I misunderstood. Anyway, I came back eventually and found The God Journey and began listening to the podcasts when I had time. I also bought “So you don’t want to go to church anymore”, read it and loaned it to my family but nothing really came of it. Well, just a few months ago, my family met some believers nearby who told them about The Shack and what do you know but my family came back to me saying, “Have you heard about this book?! We want to order “So you dont’ want to go to church anymore”!”, I said, go check you bookshelf, I’ve already loaned it to you.

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