Anne Lamott claims the two best prayers she knows are: "Help me, help me, help me" and "Thank you, thank you, thank you." She has a friend whose morning prayer each day is "Whatever," and whose evening prayer is "Oh, well." Anne thinks of Jesus as "Casper the friendly savior" and describes God as "one crafty mother." Despite--or because of--her irreverence, faith is a natural subject for Anne Lamott. Since Operating Instructions and Bird by Bird, her fans have been waiting for her to write the book that explained how she came to the big-hearted, grateful, generous faith that she so often alluded to in her two earlier nonfiction books. The people in Anne Lamott's real life are like beloved characters in a favorite series for her readers--her friend Pammy, her son, Sam, and the many funny and wise folks who attend her church are all familiar. And Traveling Mercies is a welcome return to those lives, as well as an introduction to new companions Lamott treats with the same candor, insight, and tenderness. Lamott's faith isn't about easy answers, which is part of what endears her to believers as well as nonbelievers. Against all odds, she came to believe in God and then, even more miraculously, in herself. As she puts it, "My coming to faith did not start with a leap but rather a series of staggers." At once tough, personal, affectionate, wise, and very funny, Traveling Mercies tells in exuberant detail how Anne Lamott learned to shine the light of faith on the darkest part of ordinary life, exposing surprising pockets of meaning and hope.
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Traveling Mercies begins with the poet's family--those who emigrated from Lebanon, and those who remained behind, enduring their homeland's civil strife. His affinity extends naturally into intimate poems about Central American refugees with whom he has worked and Native American children who were his students. Whether he writes a transparent lyric, a resonant narrative, or a poem that proceeds through a series of cathartic images that can bring to mind Lorca's notion of duende, the language sings.
This book describes a journey through life. While it is intended to entertain, it is also intended to show that when the chips are down one must go on and make the best of things. At the same time, life should not be taken too seriously. As the saying goes, you only live once. A good part of my childhood took place during the war which was a dangerous time for our elders, but for us kids it was all a big adventure. Either way, we got through it! Later, a college education became a must even though my parents felt that we were "working people," and we did not need a higher education. Nevertheless, I persevered and got my education, (with some help from Uncle Sam, ) and it opened worlds to me that I might have never known. The book is not intended to be religious; however, I cannot feel but that God has a hand in things which shows in my life, perhaps not always immediately but upon some reflection. Finally, as I said, the book is intended to entertain. If the reader gets a kick out of it and if it causes him or her to reflect a little upon his or her own life, writing it will have been worthwhile!
At the heart of acclaimed poet Lorna Goodison’s seventh book of poetry – her first published in Canada – is music, moving from a slow ska, a hard rocksteady, and a sweetie-come-brush-me bossanova, to line and sight gratitude psalms, lionheart outlaw anthems, and Miles Davis, blown by the winds to a concert in Berlin. Many of the poems are about those not heard or less counted, those who live in places like the favelas of Rio or the Kingston slum called Moonlight City. Goodison chronicles how “from shameports we passed through whale-belly nights of no return”, or from prison through the fields of Tecumseh on a Greyhound bus to Detroit. And she journeys, as they must have, to hell, this time in a marvellous translation of the canto about Brunetto Latini from Dante’s Inferno, where she meets Mr. Brown, a Jamaican duppy conqueror from her own land of look behind. Set mainly in her native Jamaica but universal in its concerns, this book, rare and special, is the real thing.
It has been said that to love another person is to see the face of God. To see the hand of God, cultivate a garden.
We’ve all heard that God has a plan for our lives, but what does that mean in practical terms—when we’re faced with important life decisions, like who to marry, what job to take, where to send our children to school, or what church to join? Sometimes, God’s perfect will seems difficult to find, confusing to follow, easy to miss. We may even wonder if we’ve made past choices that have thrown God’s plan for our lives off track.Discovering God’s Will explores important questions like: How free are we if God has a perfect plan for our lives? Does suffering and trouble mean we are off track? How exactly does God speak?Discussing these and other questions, Jerry Sittser offers a biblically based approach that readers will find truly liberating. No matter what decisions you’ve already made, he points out that it is still possible to live out God’s perfect will for your life—even if you think you’ve married the wrong person, chosen the wrong career, or landed yourself in some kind of serious trouble.This new edition includes study questions designed for individual and group use that will be helpful to anyone faced with decisions large and small.
As the road trip from his Midwestern home to his freshman year at a Southern California college takes random detours, Griffin Smith learns life lessons about forgiveness, integrity, and character.
This popular duo has teamed up again in a second volume of their best-selling Here I Am, Lord collection of prayers and prayer starters for teens. With their hard-won insight into the lives of teenagers, the authors have created a second youth prayer companion to encourage teens from 14 to 17 to pray about the big issues they face every day. Like Volume 1, this book uses touching stories, personal prayer examples and insightful questions, teens are gently guided to consider the important issues of life such as goodness, sexuality, humility, beauty, faith, and courage as well as to formulate their own responses to the God who calls each of us by name. What makes Here I Am, Lord, Volume 2 significant is that the chapters combine old and new stories, saints and rock lyrics, stories, poems, and parables about the "hot topics" the authors have heard teens actually discuss! Suitable for use in confirmation or religious education classes, Here I Am, Lord, Volume 2 can help today's Catholic youth navigate these often traumatic and challenging years with renewed Faith and deeper commitment.
Presents profiles of contemporary novelists, playwrights, essayists, historians, and poets from around the world.
The Word of God is the most valuable gift you can give yourself and those around you.
An exploration of spirituality considers the meaning of prayer in a number of cultures and religions--Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Native Americans, Mormons--and shares the intimate prayer habits of personalities as diverse as Billy Graham and Norman Lear. Original.