Saturday, November 27, 2010

Review - Spiritual Rhythm

In August I posted about discouragement and some encouragement found in Kem Meyer's blog, in which she was talking about a book by Mark Buchanan - "Spiritual Rhythm: Being with Jesus Every Season of Your Soul". The very next day I found an unexpected package on my porch, a copy of Spiritual Rhythm, sent by Mark via Zondervan Publishers! In the intro he described the book as one not to be rushed through, so I've taken my time reading it. Tonight I finished, so here are my thoughts on the book.

Spiritual Rhythm is a deep and thoughtful book, looking how it's not just ok but natural and healthy to go through all forms of seasons in our spiritual lives. God is there, and speaks to us, in winter, spring, summer and fall. How we relate to Him, what is expected of us, and how we interact with others are all deeply effected by the season we're in. Mark writes with passion and out of the experience he has in dealing with each of the seasons. 

As I mentioned, this is not a book to be rushed through. It's one to take in slowly, to reflect on - and I imagine one to revisit when I find myself in a new season of life. The first part of the book takes a close look at each season, first describing what it looks like, then some thoughts on activities that will be most fruitful for that season. The second part of the book is a set of essay describing various spiritual rhythms: balancing, abiding, seeking, walking in the light, being, sustaining, knocking, persevering. I especially like the chapter on balancing. Most of us want balance, but we don't know that what we really crave is rhythm. If we tried to stand up in a kayak, yes, we better have perfect balance. But that won't get us anywhere. To actually paddle a kayak you need a rhythm. 

Spiritual Rhythm is a book worth reading - all the more so if you find yourself in the season of winter, or wondering why there seem to be so many ups and downs in your life, faith or ministry.

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