July 10, 2019
Books

DAVID’S JULY REVIEWS/PICKS: BOOKS

Please consider when ordering any of these resources, to choose, whenever possible, ordering directly from the particular publisher (the link for each item is usually provided), rather than going to Amazon or similar outlets.  When you order from these distributors, the royalties for the lcomposer, as well as the publisher, are greatly compromised, as a substantial portion of the royalties go to the ordering source.  The options to order from Amazon are provided here in many cases (and obviously in some cases, certain items may be out of print from the publisher), but most often, you should be able to obtain these resources from the specific publisher.  So, think about it … choose differently, support the composers and authors who have created these resources, and click on the links provided here to order directly from the publisher.

The Universal Christ
Richard Rohr

In his decades as a globally recognized teacher, Richard Rohr has helped millions realize what is at stake in matters of faith and spirituality. Yet Rohr has never written on the most perennially talked about topic in Christianity: Jesus. Most know who Jesus was, but who was Christ? Is the word simply Jesus’s last name? Too often, Rohr writes, our understandings have been limited by culture, religious debate, and the human tendency to put ourselves at the center.

Drawing on scripture, history, and spiritual practice, Rohr articulates a transformative view of Jesus Christ as a portrait of God’s constant, unfolding work in the world. “God loves things by becoming them,” he writes, and Jesus’s life was meant to declare that humanity has never been separate from God—except by its own negative choice. When we recover this fundamental truth, faith becomes less about proving Jesus was God, and more about learning to recognize the Creator’s presence all around us, and in everyone we meet.

Thought-provoking, practical, and full of deep hope and vision, The Universal Christ is a landmark book from one of our most beloved spiritual writers, and an invitation to contemplate how God liberates and loves all that is.  Richard has always inspired me and gotten me to think outside my spiritual box … well, he really does it and then some with this book.  I think this is one of the most important spiritual books that has been written in some time.  DH (7.7.19)

The Inclusive Bible

While this new Bible is certainly an inclusive-language translation, it is much more: it is a re-imagining of the scriptures and our relationship to them. Not merely replacing male pronouns, the translators have rethought what kind of language has built barriers between the text and its readers. Seeking to be faithful to the original languages, they have sought new and non-sexist ways to express the same ancient truths. The Inclusive Bible is a fresh, dynamic translation into modern English, carefully crafted to let the power and poetry of the language shine forth—particularly when read aloud—giving it an immediacy and intimacy rarely found in traditional translations of the Bible. The Inclusive Bible contains both the Old and the New Testaments.

This is one of the best biblical investments I have made in the last few years – it is a tremendous resource for me as a composer, but also as one who is always attempting to navitage the scriptures in a new and inclusive ways. There have been other attempts to provide inclusive translations of the Bible.  For my money – this is the best I have come across.  DH  (7.7.19)

Wrestling with God
Ronald Rolheiser

The last few decades have rapidly birthed a modern world that would have been unrecognizable fifty years ago. As long-held beliefs on love, faith, and God are challenged by the aggregate of changes that have overhauled our world, many of us are left feeling confused and uncertain while old norms are challenged and redefined at breakneck speed.

In Wrestling with God, my good friend Ron Rolheiser offers a steady and inspiring voice to help us avow and understand our faith in a world where nothing seems solid or permanent. Drawing from his own life experience, as well as a storehouse of literary, psychological, and theological insights, the beloved author of Sacred Fire examines the fears and doubts that challenge us. It is in these struggles to find meaning, that Ron lays out a path for faith in a world struggling to find faith, but perhaps more important, he helps us find our own rhythm within which to walk that path. Ron always writes in user-friendly language without “dumbing it down.”  This is a rare combination.  And just like with his every popular The Holy Longing, Ron really touches the human condition in this book.  To me, it is The Holy Longing, Part Two.  Get this book.  DH (7.7.19)

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