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Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire: What Happens When God's Spirit Invades the Hearts of His People Paperback – March 31, 2003

4.9 out of 5 stars 456 customer reviews

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Habits of Grace: Enjoying Jesus through the Spiritual Disciplines by David Mathis
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

As though blowing oxygen upon the dying embers of a fire, pastor Jim Cymbala revived a broken-down church in a rough-shod inner-city neighborhood through Christian faith. Twenty-five years ago, the Brooklyn Tabernacle could barely draw 26 people to a Sunday service. Nowadays the congregation is 6,000 strong--filled with converted prostitutes, pimps, drug addicts, and homeless people, as well as yuppies and wholesome families. Although he's quick to give God credit for this miraculous success story, Cymbala admits that there may be a few human decisions that led to this Christian triumph. Most significantly, he made sure his church community embraced everyone, from all walks of life--no matter how distasteful or foreign. "Christians often hesitate to reach out to those who are different," according to Cymbala. "They want God to clean the fish before they catch them. If someone's gold ring is attached to an unusual body part, if the person doesn't smell the best or the skin color is not the same, Christians tend to hesitate." Thus, Cymbala encouraged his congregation to adopt the very same tolerant and accepting attitude as their God does. The results? Let's just say a church thrives in Brooklyn. Accomplished cowriter Dean Merrill helps this tender true story stay satisfying and highly readable. --Gail Hudson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Twenty-five years ago, Cymbala, worn out from pastoring two congregations, devoted himself solely to the dwindling band of worshipers at ramshackle Brooklyn Tabernacle. Today, the old building has been replaced, there are 6,000 worshipers at four Sunday services, the church choir wins Grammies and sings for Billy Graham's crusades, and Cymbala is asked to speak all over the world about how he did it. Although he believes he didn't do it--God did--Cymbala does have a secret: the church is first and foremost a house of prayer, he says, a place where souls can call on God. Accordingly, Cymbala established Tuesday-night prayer meeting as the most important church function (later, church members began a "Prayer Band" to intercede round the clock for all and sundry). With professional Christian writer Merrill's help, Cymbala tells not his church's story as much as the stories of individual souls whose saving illustrates the truth of his testimony that God responds to prayer made in repentance and faith. Cymbala considers his work part of the revivalist tradition of nondenominational Christian evangelism, and he cites 300 years' worth of the great revivals and revivalists often, adding greater interest to a book that voices some of the oldest Christian wisdom with the vivid immediacy of telling tomorrow's news. Ray Olson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan; New Ed edition (March 31, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310251532
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310251538
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (456 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Larry O. Sanders on January 29, 2000
Format: Hardcover
A powerful book on the real power of prayer. When I was given this title by a friend to read, I told him I'd put on my reading list of which there are >40 other books. He said "Put it at the top, I'm reading it for the 7th time"! If you want to know how Christ would have done things in the 20th century, read this book. Cymbala, relies on prayer to bring a multiracial church of just over 20 members to a church of over 6,000. He is not a seminary trained pastor with a slick message. His church does outreach as Christ did, they go where the people most in need live and work. He has great sadness for those pastors rate their value in "attendance, building and cash, the new holy trinity." This book is a great testimony as to how God wants us to be, loving, forgiving and merciful, with the people in most need of God. A tremendous book.
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Format: Hardcover
In reading "Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire" I was struck by how God-centered the book was. It was not just a typical "how-to" on modern Christianity, but it was a timeless work that demonstrated the power of God that He sends out when we trust Him above all others and above all things. Pastor Cymbala did just that in Brooklyn. How refreshing it was to read about the Holy Spirit entering people's lives (people that most American Christians wouldn't have given a chance...) and changing them forever. Brooklyn Tabernacle became a place that God worked mightily because the whole church decided to admit to God that they had nothing else but Him, and that the power was all His. They could not trust in money, buildings, programs, famous people, websites, big staffs, high attendance, affluent neighborhoods, cutting-edge teachings, seminary training, human knowledge, big denominations, long-standing traditions, or anything else. Pastor Cymbala guides the reader toward the power of prayer in a healthy way, as well. We are not tempted to think that the mere installation of a prayer meeting will automatically force God's hand either. I loved nearly every bit of this book. Glory goes to God. I am now reading the follow-up work: "Fresh Faith".
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Format: Hardcover
This novel is a thought provoking book that makes one realize how far from the basics we have gotten. It makes one realize how our programs, newfangled ideas, and our contemporary worship have gotten in the way of how God would have us do His work in His kingdom. This book does not redefine prayer and God's love for us, however, it does emphasize the simplicity and importance of crying out to the Lord our God in prayer. It points out the blessings that we are missing out on because we do not call on God through prayer. It points out how God is able to work through us if we are in communion with Him in prayer. This book points out nothing new, everything is in the Bible. So many times we are trying to reinvent the wheel when the old one works as well as it did in the day of its inception. This book is truly inspirational by seeing what the power of God through prayer did for a dying church, and by seeing that God is a faithful God, and He will truly build His own church if we only follow His instructions and cry out to Him in PRAYER.
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Format: Hardcover
Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire should be required reading for everyone in ministry. Within the framework of telling the story of his own ministry, Jim Cymbala illustrates the awesome power that can only be tapped when we communicate with God through prayer. This book has a lesson for all who will read it. This book will also inspire you with testimonies of what God can do in the lives of everyday people when His people pray. I heartily recommend purchasing this book.
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Format: Hardcover
I have now read this book for the third time, as well as attended Brooklyn Tabernacle on 3 separate occasions. It is an awesome church, and it shows what GOD, not man, can do. The book is, quite simply, life changing, showing how God took an inner city dying church and transformed it into one of the biggest churches in America. Everything done at the church is based on prayer, and the Tuesday night prayer meetings have lines forming around the block to get in. Jim Cymbala talks in the book about the lives that are changed, but there is nothing there that glorifies Jim Cymbala or anyone else at all. It shows how all of our Hollywood style programs in churches are simply a sham. After you read it, you will want to get copies for everyone in your congregation!
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of the most uplifting books I have read in many years. I did not believe that anywhere there were people who were zealous to find Jesus Christ. The congregation and their pastor point to a way out of the lack of spiritual power. Everywhere, but especially on the West Coast, churches have little to say that is relevant to the problems of ordinary people. But this church is alive and powerful, not because of superior preaching or even a wonderful choir. It is because they depend on Jesus Christ instead of the gimmickry that is so prevelant throughout this country which is supposed to make churches grow. It is a back-to-basics book for churches regardless of denomination. It is also an inspiring story of what happens when a man in humble submission to God, obeys his voice. Sprinkled throughout the book are stories like that of David, a vagrant who would be despised in most churches, but who found tremendous love and encouragement through Pastor Cymbala and those in his congregation. I would pray this kind of spirituality would spread to many churches. I also would pray that many of us who call ourselves Christians would spend large amounts of time in prayer not in some prefunctory manner but really getting serious about an intimite relationship with the living Christ. If this truly happens perhaps there is still some hope for this nation.
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