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"What are you giving up for Lent this year?" It's the expected question amongst Christian friends each spring. In Simplifying the Soul, Paula Huston asks her readers a deeper, alternative sort of question: "How will you rid your life of excess this Lent?" Huston encourages readers to see Lent as a time to seek out silence and free themselves of "stuff"; to de-clutter minds, hearts, and lives; and to acknowledge the connections between what they pray about and what they do.
With honesty, vulnerability, and grace, Huston challenges readers to move outward and act, showing them how everyday actions like cleaning out a junk drawer, giving away something no longer used, or spending fifteen minutes in silence can be surprisingly powerful ways of experiencing a more meaningful Lent and a simpler life. Whether cutting up a credit card, visiting someone at the hospital, or forgiving someone with whom they are angry, readers experience, under Huston's gentle and expert care, how such practices lead to a more authentic Christian faith.
|Publisher:||Ave Maria Press|
|Product dimensions:||5.00(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.40(d)|
About the Author
Paula Huston wrote literary fiction for twenty years before shifting her focus to spirituality. Since then, she has published the critically acclaimed Signatures of Grace, The Holy Way, By Way of Grace, and Forgiveness. A Camaldolese Benedictine oblate, Huston is married, has four grown children, and lives in central California.
Table of Contents
beginnings: Simplifying Space 1
first week of lent: Simplifying the Use of Money 17
second week of lent: Simplifying the Care of the Body 39
third week of lent: Simplifying the Mind 61
fourth week of lent: Simplifying the Schedule 85
fifth week of lent: Simplifying Relationships 109
holy week: Simplifying Prayer 135
What People are Saying About This
Too often thought of as simply a season of sacrifice, Lent is revealed here as something far richera privileged time to experience God in your everyday life, to open yourself to conversion, and to savor God's transforming love. (Rev. James Martin, S.J., Author of The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything)
Huston offers herself as a lively companion in a Lenten practice stripped of clichés. Join herit might be the simplest and liveliest Lent you have ever kept. (Eugene Peterson, Author of Pastor: A Memoir)
When I read Huston's words I am galvanized and motivated toward greater simplicity. (Luci Shaw, Author of Water My Soul)
This is the most moving, most appealing, and, at the same time, most practical book I have ever seen on Lenten practices. (Phyllis Tickle, Author of The Great Emergence)
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I was a little wary about this book because Paula Huston is a well-known Catholic writer and I am a little-known Protestant librarian. And yet, somehow, I connected with Mrs. Huston's practices for Lent. I was initially gung-ho about enacting these practices; then I discovered they could be pretty demanding--in a good way. If you are looking to rid your life of spiritual "junk," have a look at this book and see if it doesn't help out.
This is a thought provoking book with unusual suggestions for devotional life during Lent. Written from a Roman Catholic point of view, some suggestions do not quite fit for this Protestant. Some suggestions are quite demanding.
If you are looking for Lenten activities to try that are different this is definitely a book to explore. It has a story (meditation) and suggestion for action (practice) for every day of the week except Sunday throughout Lent. Each week deals with a different topic - money,your body, your mind, schedule, relationships, and prayer. Most of the practices are do-able for the average person and the meditations are interesting and tend to help you be reflective. This will definitely help to renew your spirit and get ready for Holy Week and Easter.