Book Review : A Little Guide to Christian Spirituality

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Betty Lai shares about Glen G. Scorgie’s book, “A Little Guide to Christian Spirituality.” The book is available at Amazon.co.uk for £6.39

My husband Alex gave me this book for my birthday this past year. I am glad he gave me this book by Dr. Scorgie to read. I actually met Dr. Scorgie before I’d ever encountered any of his books. We met up with him the first time I went down to San Diego with Alex. Dr. Scorgie struck me as a very refined man, in all manners of speaking. He took great care in his words, his actions, both of which reflect great care in his thinking in the first place. After reading his book “A Little Guide on Christian Spirituality”, I can see his character in his writing. He is a storyteller.

I love reading out loud personally, to hear each word of every sentence read out as they are intended and not to be glossed over through skimming the book. This isn’t always a smart thing to do especially with long books. I tend to stop reading out loud after the first chapter or so. This book, however, captured me and really demanded me to read all its words out loud. In fact, Alex and I went through this book together with the majority of the book being read out loud by me whilst we were on a road trip to the Canadian Rockies and back.

This “little guide’, as it calls itself, is well-written and well-structured. The layout of the book is laid out clearly right from the beginning. There are three dimensions of Christian spirituality that are explored: 1) the relational dimension – Christ WITH us, 2) the transformational dimension – Christ IN us, and 3) the vocation dimension – Christ THROUGH us. Within this clear structure, Dr Scorgie weaves his storytelling into the book with his own personal stories as well as including the thoughts and wisdom of numerous important historical theological figures.

A favorite part of the book that I especially remember was in his section about the vocation dimension of our Christian spirituality. Reading the following paragraph below was just one of many sections where I really had to stop and ponder.

‘One of the most insightful – certainly most frequently quoted – comments on Christian vocation is by Frederick Buechner: “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” God generally calls us to what we need to do and what the world needs to have done. In order to discover our personal calling, then, we must be acquainted with God’s heart for the world, and in touch with who we are. Vocation emerges where these two deep realities make contact.’

Reading this made me question myself if I have found God’s calling for me. As a Christian, I want to know whether I am doing what God wants for me in my life. Whether I am fulfilling His purpose for me. There are so many ways to try and figure out if I am living out God’s will but for me, this part of the book was one example where complex thoughts were made more simple and tangible.

After reading this book, I feel I have learned more about the complexity of learning how to grow in my spiritual life. Unlike other books that read as how-to books, this book made me feel like I was listening to a wise friend.

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