You run into a friend, greet her, and begin chatting and catching up on each other’s lives. After going through her list and your list of all the things you are doing, kids you are transporting and upcoming plans you have, you both arrive at the same conclusion.
She is so busy!
You are so busy!
If you are like me, you have had hundreds of these conversations with friends and family. As you go through life, it doesn’t take long until you are left with such a hole in your life from all you are doing that you don’t have enough time to read your Bible, pray and experience God.
I get it. I am there!
In God in My Everything:How an Ancient Rhythm Helps Busy People Enjoy God, author and pastor Ken Shigematsu shares a spiritual plan based on Scripture and the ancient practices of monks. I am not talking about the solitude and silent reflection on God’s Word that probably first comes to mind. Instead, he shares a plan in which his reader may experience God in every moment of life. As a Christian, that is what I think of when I think of heaven. I look forward to that day of being in His presence. However, what if you could really have that now, or at least a piece of that now? I don’t know about you, but sign me up! Let me in on this.
This book really is more of a guidebook that suggestions areas that need to be addressed. This is not a “to do list” of more things to accomplish or a precise formula to give you God. Rather, it steers its readers through a number of topics worth consideration. Shigematsu simply lays out the roots of faith including prayer, sacred reading and Sabbath; and three areas each of which have three additional topics to consider: Relating (friendship, sexuality, and family) Restoring (body, play, and money) and Reaching Out (work, justice, and witness). Shigematsu wants his readers to develop rules in life for each area in order to have more ability to experience God each moment. In reading this book, I would doubt that every reader would walk away with the same plan for the areas addressed. Instead, Shigematsu provides Scripture, questions, illustrations, and wisdom to guide his reader to conclude what they personally need to do in order to experience God.
I love the way he shares his life in this book. He did not write this book based on his success; he wrote it based on what he has experienced and how he reacted to difficult situations in his life. Shigematsu has a gift of discernment and wisdom. He also has a patient steadiness that comes across in his writing that is so encouraging.
God in My Everything is a win! It has me thinking and experiencing God at a level I hadn’t considered before. I am honestly not done working through all the areas in which I want to have rules for my life, but it is one of those books you savor and contemplate as you walk through life. This book is guidebook for a journey rather than a destination or place you arrive by completing your first read through. I highly recommend this book. May we all experience Him as our Everything! I give this book five of five stars.
Ken Shigematsu shows that spiritual formation is more than just solitude and contemplative reflections. Spiritual formation happens in the everyday, in each and every moment of life. For those caught up in the busyness of work, family, and church, it often feels like time with God is just another thing on a crowded ‘to-do’ list. Ken explains how the time-tested spiritual practice of the ‘rule of life’ can help bring busy people into a closer relationship with God. He shows how a personal rule of life can fit almost any vocation or life situation. In God in My Everything, you will discover how to create and practice a life-giving, sustainable rhythm in the midst of your demanding life. If you long for a deeper spirituality but often feel that the busyness of life makes a close relationship with God challenging—and, at times, seemingly impossible—this book is for you.
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Zondervan (August 6, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
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Please watch this trailer to the book. It tells you more in words and pictures than my feeble words can!
Ken Shigematsu is the Senior Pastor of Tenth Church in Vancouver, BC, one of the largest and most diverse city-center churches in Canada. He is the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal awarded to Canadians in recognition for their outstanding contribution to the country. Before entering pastoral ministry, he worked for the Sony Corporation in Tokyo and draws on both eastern and western perspectives in writing and speaking. Ken lives in Vancouver with his wife, Sakiko, and their son, Joey.
Note: We were provided with a complimentary copy of the book through Shaun Tabatt at Cross-Focused Reviews and the publisher for an honest review of this title.