The Uncluttered Heart offers four weeks of guided reflection through the weeks of Advent on through Epiphany. Each day provides a
- scripture passage
This book includes a study guide for groups.
Beth A. Richardson serves as the Director of Electronic Publishing for Upper Room Ministries. She began The Upper Room’s web ministry in 1996 with the launch of upperroom.org. A native of Oklahoma, she holds a BA from Oklahoma City University and a MDiv from Vanderbilt University School of Divinity. She wrote extensively for Alive Now magazine when she served as its Associate Editor; and she contributed stories to two volumes of The Storyteller’s Companion to the Bible. She is an ordained Deacon in The United Methodist Church.
Yet for many the grueling preoccupation in the preparations for Christmas is with the jingle-belled material things: shopping, decorations, gifts, exotic foods, visits, entertainment, etc.
Sometimes many forget the fundamental spiritual meaning of Christmas.
These daily meditations are geared to help you to become more exuberantly aware of the primary meaning of Christmas, namely, the love of God so boundless that God gave us his only divine son as a human babe, Jesus, to live among us, teach us with his stories, lay down his life for us and rise again on the third day.
These daily meditations were written in the hope that you will be able to probe, with dynamic and contagious faith, the gospel stories to increase and deepen your spiritual development during the Advent and Christmas seasons.
Not every pilgrimage requires travel. Some pilgrimages, like this one, can be embarked on without going very far from home. Whether a pilgrimage involves walking the Camino, preparing for Advent, or consciously marking off a period of time to make some changes in your life, what every pilgrim knows is that change does not come easily and rarely happens all at once.
We don’t change by suddenly deciding to change. We change in small ways when we daily open ourselves to the possibility that we too could be made anew. With this in mind, we pay attention. We keep our eyes and ears open for direction and our hearts open to the possibility of wonder and miracle. And when things go wrong, as they always do, we rejoice and give thanks anyway. These are what every pilgrim practices and what this book will, step by step, guide you through.
Walking into the Light is a 28-day pilgrimage that takes us through dark times with the promise of light ahead. Each day on this journey, we’ll be on the lookout for ways to better live our lives in ways which might invite the Divine to shine through. We’ll also be listening for calling, staying open to wonder, and experimenting with practices for traveling light and keeping it holy.
Through photos, stories, practices, and suggested readings, you’ll be guided along in a way that sets you free to explore and find your own Way through. Some days it will all come together. Other days it won’t. We expect this. Though we’re headed towards mountaintops, we’re ready for the valleys. Though we long to walk in the light right now, we’re ready for the dark nights we’ll surely encounter.
That’s the pilgrim life. Every day a new beginning. Blessings always and already on the way.
The daily readings are drawn from the history of Christian spirituality and feature such writers as Francis of Assisi, Teresa of Avila, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Henri J. M. Nouwen, Sue Monk Kidd, Douglas Steere, Jan Richardson, Trevor Hudson, Wendy M. Wright, and many others.
Beautifully bound in a leather-like cover, A Guide to Prayer for All Who Walk with God makes a perfect gift and a reliable companion for anyone seeking to deepen a steady life of prayer.
This Companion features original meditations on the Gospel reading of each day by nineteen gifted authors.
Each issue of the Advent Companion is never the same as the last and contains these one-of-a-kind extras that you won’t find anywhere else:
- a variety of beautiful blessings and essays
- an Advent Penance Service
- specially-commissioned poetry
- a unique feature: the Advent Stations