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.