Read it for yourself!

Standing Naked Before God: The Art of Public Confession

We suffer when we screw up, but we suffer doubly when we conceal our screwing up from each other and from ourselves. As the good folks in AA say, “we are only as sick as our secrets.”

We all like to think of ourselves as ‘good people,’ but that’s only half the story–and to tell only half the story is to live only half our lives. Standing Naked Before God is a book about telling the whole story–one amazing, vibrant progressive Christian church’s countercultural practice of public confession of sin.

Every week, millennials, Gen-Xers, Boomers and even young teens at First Church Somerville UCC, the church Baskette pastored in hipster Boston, take the stand to tell about a time they messed up, broke bad, or made Jesus want to cry.

The book is part how-to, part devotional reading, part how-to, and part anthology of stories of personal loss, vulnerability, failure and redemption–stories to make you laugh and cry in equal measure. It’s a book, in our tell-all culture, that is not about baring our souls to get more likes or page views: it’s about putting our wounds into the service of others.

Telling the stories of our sins in a sacred setting means learning to see how God has entered those stories, turning even our failures and flaws to goodness and grace. All we have to do is show up–and tell the truth. All of it.

This is a book for spiritual seekers of any stripe who love true stories, and who might be aching for a spiritual practice that will move them toward a wholehearted, vulnerable and fully integrated life.

A brave, bold and biting book. Don’t crack it open unless you are ready to be cracked open yourself. Much more than a scolding call to confession, this book is a love-soaked invitation to tell the truth in the pews.

Lillian Daniel

Author and Senior Pastor, First Congregational Church of Dubuque

When the pastor of a church that almost died in the ambulance–but then danced out of the ER surrounded by drag queens, young adults and a marching band–tells you there’s one thing they did that made all the difference, you probably should listen. With wit and a solid grounding in theology and psychology, Baskette tutors us in the ancient ways of confession and assurance, and gives examples of her congregation’s God-talk that will break your heart, stitch it back together, and make you long to stand up and confess.

Quinn Caldwell

Pastor and Teacher, Plymouth Congregational Church, United Church of Christ

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