A Renewed SpiritualityNurturing Hope: Christian Pastoral Care in the Twenty-First CenturyThe Power of ListeningJoy Together: Spiritual Practices for Your CongregationSabbath Keeping FastingPrayers of the Old TestamentPrayers of the New TestamentSabbathFriendingA Garden of Living Water: Stories of Self-Discovery and Spiritual GrowthDeath in Dunedin: A NovelDead Sea: A NovelDeadly Murmurs: A NovelPersonality Type in CongregationsBeating Burnout in CongregationsReaching Out in a Networked WorldEmbracing MidlifeAdvent DevotionalDraw Near: Lenten Devotional by Lynne Baab, illustrated by Dave Baab

An unplanned fast from reading

Lynne Baab • Friday September 6 2019

An unplanned fast from reading

I wrote most of this post on Thursday, August 29 in the morning.

My life consists of a great deal of reading. For work, I write (and read and edit) blog posts and articles. I also read chapters and essays from students. Dave says I’m like a race horse. I work hard and intensely, then I relax a lot. How do I relax? I read novels, nonfiction books, newspapers and blog posts online, magazines, and the Sunday newspaper in paper form.

Imagine my surprise when an ophthalmologist told me last Friday she wanted me not to read for a week. This has to...

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Creative Prayer: The basic practice of the kingdom of God

Lynne Baab • Thursday August 29 2019

Creative Prayer: The basic practice of the kingdom of God

As Christians who receive the kingdom of God, try to live in it, and long for more of it, we engage in a lot of different spiritual practices, ways of drawing near to the God of the kingdom. If someone asked you which spiritual practice is most central to God’s kingdom, how would you reply? In a recent sermon at my church, the preacher identified prayer as the basic practice of the kingdom of God.

The preacher was Rev Dr Mike Langford, Associate Professor of Theology, Discipleship and Ministry at Seattle Pacific University. Mike gave four ways that prayer images God’s kingdom,...

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Creative prayer with colors

Lynne Baab • Friday August 23 2019

Creative prayer with colors

Imagine you have just arrived at a church prayer meeting. The leader gives you a slip of paper and asks you to write down five things you are grateful for and five concerns you want to bring to God in prayer.

Then the leader shows you a box of pieces of fabric. All of the pieces are solid colors, and just about every color is represented. You can see different tones and shades of each color, too, bright yellow as well as pale yellow and gold. On a table the leader shows you pieces of paper and felt tip pens of various...

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Creative prayer: The Psalms and music

Lynne Baab • Thursday August 15 2019

Creative prayer: The Psalms and music

The Psalms have often been called the prayer book of the Bible. They help us pray even when we don’t feel like it, and they teach us to pray in new ways. They bring us into God’s presence in whatever mood we’re feeling. They are honest, vivid and sometimes raw.

I wrote last week about my friend Steve Simon’s wonderful book, Holy Walks. (I’m linking to the book on amazon. For my overseas readers, it’s also available at the Book Depository with much cheaper postage.) In the book, Steve describes the way he memorizes psalms as he walks his dog and then...

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