An unusual devotional, taking an aspect of influence from significant people of faith through history, theologians and thinkers, and applying modern day examples of how their advice, wisdom and disciplines can be applied. Karen then adds plenty of practical suggestions on how we may be able to apply the practices ourselves.
Each “invitation”, not chapters, offers plenty of food for thought and contemplation. The topics are taken from the teachings of some very interesting people, many of whom I had not heard of before but will now certainly look up their writings.
In fact, I took this book to read with me on a weekend retreat at a Benedictine monastery, which turned out to be inspired. It was wonderful, offering up all sorts of creative ways to apply faith to my thoughts. During a time of contemplation, the studies in this book gave me a diverse range of topics to ponder, often offering me an area to focus on. I was also mighty encouraged to find a chapter on St Benedict and his teachings.
This may well be an extreme approach, so equally helpful would be to read one section each day, or each week, in the normal way for a devotional, and then apply it. It only needs for some of what it says to stick, to encourage you to be more intentional in thoughts and actions, more healthy, physically, emotionally and spiritually and initiate the process of making a bigger difference to the world.
It is a lovely collection of wisdoms to ponder each day. Our digital, social media savvy world might be tempted to re-label them as “life hacks” and broadcast them with a clever but disposable meme. But this would be crude and so much less than these writings deserve. True wisdom is precious. These deserve to be deeply pondered, to speak some permanent truths into our lives. The invitations are there, generously given and free to accept.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, but was under no pressure to provide a favourable review.