Related to: 'Sanctuary of the Soul'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

Streams of Living Water

Richard Foster
Authors:
Richard Foster
Hodder & Stoughton

Celebrating the Disciplines

Richard Foster, Katherine Yanni
Authors:
Richard Foster, Katherine Yanni
Hodder & Stoughton

Longing For God

Richard Foster, Gayle Beebe
Authors:
Richard Foster, Gayle Beebe

LONGING FOR GOD is a new book from Richard Foster, author of LIFE WITH GOD, CELEBRATION OF DISCIPLINE and PRAYER, written with Gayle Beebe.Over the centuries, people have become alive to the presence of God in various different ways. This book identifies seven primary paths of devotion to God that draw from the great saints of the Church, and provides a history and practice of Christian spirituality that is available to all believers who long to enter into a conversational and redemptive life with God.LONGING FOR GOD blends a reading of the core texts of the Christian faith with 'reflecting and responding' sections that help the reader to use the various texts on their own spiritual journey. Each chapter explores a particular path towards God embodied by various classic spiritual writers, illuminating our understanding of the Christian life.Written in an inviting, interactive style, LONGING FOR GOD examines such themes as the spiritual life as journey; the imitation of Christ; action and contemplation - all of which can draw us closer to the presence of God.

Hodder & Stoughton

Life With God

Richard Foster
Authors:
Richard Foster

LIFE WITH GOD is Richard Foster's first major new work for nearly a decade and is of similar magnitude to his classics: PRAYER, CELEBRATION OF DISCIPLINE and STREAMS OF LIVING WATER.The starting point of LIFE WITH GOD is that so many of us want to make the Bible the foundation of our way of life, but struggle to make sense of this huge, apparently disjointed book. Why is that Christians try so hard to place the Bible at the centre of their lives, but in reality get very little from it in terms of genuine life-transforming practice?Richard Foster believes that it is because we fail to grasp the overriding coherent message of the Bible - that all of Scripture is unified around the theme of living a vibrant and dynamic life with God. Breaking up history into fifteen epochs that reveal the unfolding of God's plan for seeking out a relationship with us, Foster sees the Bible as 'the loving heart of God made visible and plain.'Readers will discover a whole new way to read Scripture, making it a doorway to a lifestyle we can master, rather than merely knowledge we understand.

Hodder & Stoughton

Money, Sex and Power

Richard Foster
Authors:
Richard Foster

No issues touch us more profoundly or universally,' writes Richard Foster. 'No topics cause more controversy. No human realities have greater power to bless or curse. No three things have been more sought after or are more in need of a Christian response.'Money, Sex and Power discerns the biblical principles that enable us to live out a relevant and authentic response to the three greatest temptations of our age.Gerard Kelly writes: 'Foster follows a road few in recent years have travelled, and does so with depth, wit and down-to-earth wisdom. Don't assume for one moment that this book is anti-money, anti-sex or anti-power: the author has a healthy respect and admiration for all three as sacred gifts of a loving creator. What he does urge us to do, though, is to "live rightly" in respect of these key ares, and so to be freed into a life of creative celebration.'

Hodder & Stoughton

Prayer

Richard Foster
Authors:
Richard Foster

A comprehensive, profound and immediately accessible book which opens the way for all to increase their understanding and develop their practice of prayer. Richard Foster explores the riches of the historical classics of prayer as well as his own personal experience and roots his teaching in scripture. No one who reads PRAYER will remain unmoved; all will find encouragement within its pages.

Hodder & Stoughton

Celebration of Discipline

Richard Foster
Authors:
Richard Foster

Charlie Cleverly

Charlie Cleverly is Rector of St Aldates, Oxford, one of the UK's leading Anglican churches and part of the New Wine network, with a strong student contingent. He is the author of several books, most recently A Passion That Shapes Nations.

Eugene Peterson

Eugene Peterson was a pastor, author, scholar and poet. He grew up in Montana and earned his B.A. in philosophy from Seattle Pacific University, his S.T.B. from New York Theological Seminary, and his M.A. in Semitic languages from Johns Hopkins University. He served as a pastor for 29 years and then became Professor Emeritus of Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, retiring in 2006.Eugene Peterson is perhaps best known for his book THE MESSAGE: THE BIBLE IN CONTEMPORARY LANGUAGE and is also known for his involvement in the Renovaré spiritual formation movement. The books in his spiritual theology series, including THE JESUS WAY and PRACTISE RESURRECTION, are widely acclaimed.After retiring from full-time teaching, Eugene and his wife Jan lived in the Big Sky Country of rural Montana. Eugene Peterson died in October 2018.

Jonathan Sacks

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks is a global religious leader, philosopher, the author of more than twenty-five books, and a moral voice for our time. Described by H.R.H The Prince of Wales as 'a light unto this nation', he is a frequent and respected contributor to radio, television and the press both in Britian and around the world.Admired by non-Jews as much as Jews, by secular as well as religious thinkers, and equally at home in the university and the yeshiva, Rabbi Sacks served as Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth from 1991 until 2013. He read Philosophy at Cambridge before pursuing postgraduate studies at New College, Oxford and King's College, London.

Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer is the bestselling author of more than 100 inspirational books, including The Power of Simple Prayer, Approval Addiction, Power Thoughts and Battlefield of the Mind. Joyce's 'Enjoying Everyday Life' radio and television programmes are broadcast around the world, and she travels extensively conducting conferences.

Krish Kandiah

Krish Kandiah is Founder and Director of the adoption and fostering charity Home for Good and an Ambassador for the relief charity Tearfund. He is in demand as a speaker, consultant and social entrepreneur. He lives with his wife and seven children, including fostered and adopted children, in Oxfordshire, UK.

Lorna Byrne

Lorna Byrne has been seeing and talking to angels since she was a baby. Now that her family is raised she talks openly about what she has learned. She lives quietly in rural Ireland. She is the author of the international bestsellers Angels in My Hair, Stairways to Heaven, A Message of Hope from the Angels and Love From Heaven. Her books have been translated into over twenty languages. For more information, visit www.lornabyrne.com or follow Lorna on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/lornabyrneangels

Maggi Dawn

After spending a number of years working as a singer, writer and musician in the field of contemporary music, Maggi Dawn was ordained into the Anglican Church in 1999. Having been Chaplain and Fellow at Robinson College, Cambridge, she is now Dean of Marquand Chapel and Associate Professor at Yale Divinity School. An occasional broadcaster for BBC Radio 4 Religion, she is a regular speaker at Greenbelt Festival and a wide range of venues around the world. Her books include Beginnings, Giving it up and THE WRITING ON THE WALL.

Mooji

Mooji (Anthony Paul Moo-Young) was born in Jamaica in 1954. As a teenager he moved to London, where he later worked as a street portrait artist and then as an art teacher in the local college. In 1987, an encounter with a Christian mystic inspired Mooji to 'walk out of his life' - an expression he uses to convey the profundity of that meeting. In 1983, Mooji travelled to India, where seemingly by chance, he met his Master, Sri HWL Poonja, or Papaji, as he is affectionately known by his devotees. At Papaji's feet, whatever still remained of an active ego was finally uprooted. Recognising Mooji's radiance, people from various parts of the world soon began to approach him to simply sit in his presence and to ask questions regarding their search for Truth. The capactity to guide them arose spontaneously in him. While Mooji's presence exudes compassion and devotion, his unity with Truth is also potently shared through self-inquiry, the unsparing light of wisom which dispels the delusions and suffering common to human experiencing. In his direct and open interactions, each one who meets Mooji with a genuine urge for freedom is pulled by his profound unconditional love and the power of his pointings into the recognition of the infinite Self we already are. Mooji continues to share Satsang worldwide with all who yearn to discover their true nature.

Norman Drummond

Norman Drummond is founder of Columba 1400, a charity specialising in helping young people from underprivileged backgrounds to become leaders. He is also chairman of Drummond International, a life coaching, personal and presentation skills and media management company. Formerly a headteacher and BBC governor, Norman Drummond's skills as a coach are in great demand with top politicians and business figures worldwide. He is currently a chaplain to the Queen. He is married with five children.

Pete Greig

Pete Greig is a writer, church-planter and bewildered co-founder of the 24-7 movement. He heads up Emmaus Rd in Guildford with his wife Sammy, serves as Vice-President for the NGO Tearfund and was part of the senior leadership team at HTB in London for seven years. Pete's publications include Red Moon Rising, God on Mute, The Prayer Course and Dirty Glory. He loves art galleries, live music and knocking down walls. Pete tweets regularly @petegreig

Peter Enns

Peter Enns (PhD, Harvard University) is associate professor of Old Testament at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA. He is author of NIV APPLICATION COMMENTARY: EXODUS.

Philip Yancey

Philip Yancey is one of the most popular and acclaimed religious writers of our day. His searching and refreshingly honest books, which include FINDING GOD IN UNEXPECTED PLACES, SOUL SURVIVOR, PRAYER and WHAT GOOD IS GOD? have encouraged and inspired millions of people around the world.With a background in journalism, Philip admits that he prefers to ask the questions instead of answer them. This has led him through a path of re-discovering his faith and sharing that publicly through his writing in some of the most heart-felt and tried ways imaginable. A true wordsmith, a curator of language, Philip tackles difficult issues with an approach of 'this is what I've wrestled with and how I got through it so perhaps you might find it helpful too' making his reading incredibly engaging. Philip admits that he lost his faith in a racist church and made a living out of being a doubter and sceptic. After he came back to his faith, he wrote books about his journey by 'circling the edges' of common issues and eventually moving on to topics like Jesus, grace and most recently prayer.Billy Graham has said that there is no one in the evangelical world whom he admires more.

Rupert Sheldrake

Dr Rupert Sheldrake is a biologist and author of more than eighty technical papers and ten books, including A New Science of Life. He was a Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge, where he was Director of Studies in cell biology, and was also a Research Fellow of the Royal Society. From 2005-2010 he was the Director of the Perrott-Warrick Project for research on unexplained human abilities, funded from Trinity College, Cambridge. He is currently a Fellow of the Institute of Noetic Sciences in California, and a Visiting Professor at the Graduate Institute in Connecticut. He is married, has two sons and lives in London. Follow Rupert on Twitter @RupertSheldrake. His web site is www.sheldrake.org