Our two best Advent books—one free

god with us.jpgThere is no doubt that this new book is the best of the recent crop of Advent devotionals, and we are eager to tell you about it.  Who doesn’t appreciate the time to slow down amidst the shopping craziness, to recapture some of the spiritual themes of waiting, repenting, longing for justice and re-committing to the incarnational ways of Christ’s Kingdom?  Advent, as we all surely know, isn’t quite the same as the ubiquitous countdown of the “shopping days until Christmas” schtick.  It is a profound time, even a dark time.  Careful religious reading for spiritual formation should be an essential practice to keep us on the journey.

And so, we announce God With Us: Rediscovering the Meaning of Christmas, recently published by Paraclete Press (regularly priced at $26.95—but see our special price and bonus gift, below.)  Expertly edited by Greg Pennoyer & Gregory Wolfe, this is a reader’s delight: it includes contributions such as a very moving forward by Eugene Peterson, reflections by esteemed poet/mystic Scott Cairns, pieces by spiritual writer Emilie Griffin (do you know her books on prayer?), memoirist Kathleen Norris, the poet and writer Luci Shaw, the Catholic theologian and journalist, Richard John Neuhaus.  Wow.

This is a very handsome volume, illustrated with gentle art in subtle tones.  The rich, glossy paper gives it a certain quality that helps you realize–incarnationally?–that what you hold in your hands is not only beautiful, but good.  Mr. Pennoyer works in Canada as the co-founder of the Centre for Cultural Renewal and has directed a project of exhibitions around the themes of incarnation.  Mr. Wolfe is the renowned editor of Image, the impressive monthly journal on the arts and creative writing, It should come as no surprise, then, that this is one artsy presentation, a delicious book to behold, with only the very best writers. I hope you agree that it seems very, very right to have such an attractive volume for such an important use.

I like the copy on the dust jacket, which invites us to “put first things first, and seek silence, if only for a few precious minutes a day.  Now, ever more intently, we are to watch and listen for God.”  It continues,
God With Us is a companion for those who want to experience Christmas as the early Christians once did, set in the larger context of Advent and Epiphany.  Through daily meditations, Scripture, prayer, illuminating history and fine art, we experience what saints have glimpsed through the ages—the wonder of God made flesh.”

We would like to offer an incentive to purchase this lovely and helpful book, and we will make an offer that we think is a perfect supplement to this handsome volume.  If you order this, we will send along, at no cost to you, a book we currently sell for $6.95, my absolute favorite daily devotional for Advent, the quite handsome paperback, The Advent of Justice (published by Dordt College Press.)  It was written with serious attention to the pertinent Hebrew Scriptures, the seasonal texts which are set in an era of political turmoil, national exile, international injustice and looming war.  Nobody has plumbed these powerful Bible passages for the season as have our H&M friends who have done this devotional collection, Brian Walsh, Sylvia Keesmaat, Mark VanderVennan and Richard Middleton.  You should know their names as they’ve all done books I’ve touted here; this is a greatest hits of good authors, each doing small daily readings with extraordinary insight and real contemporary power.

Advent of Justice will keep your thinking about the season rooted in the unfolding Biblical story, and remind you of texts and teachings that will shape you–in fidelty and hope– long after the Advent season has passed.  We sell this book every year, and this year, we’re willing to give it away, to compliment the lovely God With Us Advent devotional collection, which we are offering at a sale price, too.  Together, they will truly make a difference in your life, or will bless those with whom you might share these as an early Advent gift.  Enjoy!

Advent of Justice
with purchase of
God With Us
on sale for $25


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