Monday, June 30, 2014

Book Review: Here and Now

Information about the book
Here and Now: Living in the Spirit by Henri J.M. Nouwen, published by The Crossroads Publishing Company, 1994.  Amazon link to the book.

In his Preface to this book, Nouwen says that "One day I simply sat down behind my desk and began to write down thoughts and feelings that emerged from my mind and heart.  Except for the Bible, I had no other books to quote from....  It became a long examination of conscience, an extended personal statement of faith, and a series of glimpses into the Kingdom of God."

What resulted is a book of eleven chapters, each with a theme such as "The Spiritual Life," "Prayer," "Conversion" (to list three of them).  Each themed chapter has between six and ten short meditations, suitable to be read during a devotional time or to use to lead a small group discussion.  At the end of the book is a Guide for Reflection.

I used this book as a daily devotional guide, and it was an excellent resource.  I love to read what Nouwen writes; in his books I always find a multitude of "ah-ha" moments - moments when I am brought closer to God or to an understanding of God's nature. The passages are short, but long enough to matter.

My "normal" source for devotional time is the Upper Room's Disciplines, which I recommend to you. However, for a time, I have not found them to inspire me, and I was searching for something else.  This is one of the books that has filled that temporary void.  I highly recommend it as a devotional resource, or as a book to just read.  I haven't used it as a group study book, but I imagine it would work for that as well.  I highly recommend it.

Link to my posts that mention the book

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