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Ordinary Losses: Naming the Graces That Shape Us

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Filled with wonder and incisive exploration, this book offers a vivid appreciation for the grace that comes from naming what we have left behind.

We often think of loss as a part of later life, but loss shapes us from the time we are born. From the perspective of someone in her twenties, Elisa Stanford explores the realities and redemptions of these losses. What do we grieve in our twenties and thirties? We grieve our shifting understanding of God, even as our faith develops and...

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Overview

Filled with wonder and incisive exploration, this book offers a vivid appreciation for the grace that comes from naming what we have left behind.

We often think of loss as a part of later life, but loss shapes us from the time we are born. From the perspective of someone in her twenties, Elisa Stanford explores the realities and redemptions of these losses. What do we grieve in our twenties and thirties? We grieve our shifting understanding of God, even as our faith develops and matures. And every decision we make - marriage, parenthood, career, friendships - ushers us into change. As it does, we expand to make room for new possibilities and a stronger pulse of faith.

Elisa Fryling Stanford is an editor with Shaw Books at WaterBrook Press. She and her husband, Eric, live in Colorado.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
One does not often run across an intelligent young essayist whose parents nurtured her, whose church shaped her, whose husband is devoted to her and whose God cares for the details of her life. What, one might wonder, could she possibly write about? Stanford, a 20-something editor at WaterBrook, says she is writing about loss-not searing anguish like widowhood or a terminal diagnosis, but cumulative small losses like leaving one's childhood home, or having to give up one good thing in order to choose another. Loss is indeed woven into every chapter, but it is just one thread in the larger picture: this is also a book about moving into adulthood. Now finished with grad school, married and beginning a career, she asks: "How do we stand on the edge of what we do not know, with only the love of God to hold us?" Stanford, who describes herself as "young and tired in an old and tired world," muses on such coming-of-age topics as relationships, passion, voice and identity, setting them in a magical framework of Christmas pageants and thunderstorms, best friends and wild bike rides, a beagle puppy and endless bedtime stories. In these literary essays, paradise is both lost and regained as the author gracefully explores her childhood intimation that "no mystery was too much to consider." (Oct.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557254030
  • Publisher: Paraclete Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2004
  • Pages: 122
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 7.96 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword ix
Introduction xi
Chapter 1 All I Can Remember: Home 1
Chapter 2 When Every Light Meant Home: Peace 9
Chapter 3 All That Might Be: Hope 20
Chapter 4 Between the Mysteries: Wonder 33
Chapter 5 Pieces of Ourselves: Relationship 43
Chapter 6 The Missing Hours: Time and Opportunity 56
Chapter 7 Jumping In: Courage 66
Chapter 8 One Thing: Passion 77
Chapter 9 First Words: Voice 90
Chapter 10 My True Name: Identity 102
Chapter 11 And Heaven to Earth Will Answer: God 113
Acknowledgments 123
Endnotes 125
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