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The Seasons of a Restless Heart: A Spiritual Companion For Living In Transition [Hardcover]

Debra K. Farrington

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Book Description

10 Aug 2005
In The Seasons of a Restless Heart popular retreat leader and author Debra K. Farrington retells the story of the Israelites and their time in the desert, before they reached the Promised Land. The struggle of the Israelites wandering in the desert serves to illuminate the everyday challenges of letting go of the past in order to move on to the future. While transitions often feel like an endurance contest that would be better if it would end sooner rather than later, Farrington invites us to rethink these unsettling periods and learn to embrace them.  She shows how times of transition can become periods of rest, play, creativity, and discernment. Transitions, Farrington claims, give us the opportunity to re–create and renew ourselves and become more fully what God calls us to be.

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It is no insult to Farrington to say that her unpretentious but frequently insightful and creative guide is a self–help book, in the best sense of that term, for the soul of readers navigating significant life changes. An Episcopal publisher and author of six other books, Farrington uses the Old Testament narrative of the Exodus and the ancient Israelites′ "desert years" to thread her essays on the various stages of transition, from encouraging those in transition to "make a space for God on the journey" instead of building idolatrous golden calves, to entering "Canaan," or the new home to which God has brought us. Divided into chapters with comfortably colloquial titles like "Eat, Sleep, Bend and Stretch," the book has an engaging mix of practical advice on self–care and spiritual counsel on making the most of even painful transitions. Farrington′s own recent diagnosis with multiple sclerosis and other changes in her life provide the subtext for some of her meditations, reassuring readers that she knows her subject personally and well. Interlaced with suggestions for spiritual practices and prayers, Farrington′s work should appeal to Christian readers seeking a context in which to build bridges between their own experiences and those of other believers in a time that can be both exhilarating and scary. (Apr. 8)  ( Publishers Weekly , February 14, 2005)

"...frequently insightful and creative." ( Publishers Weekly , February 14, 2005)


“A book that will stick by you in the in–between times—and not just because it’s practical and engaging. It actually lets the Bible do for us, once again, what it does best: not lay down laws, but reconnect us with ourselves, our world, and God.” —L. William Countryman, Sherman E. Johnson Professor in Biblical Studies and author, Living on the Border of the Holy “Debra Farrington has done a beautiful job of Christian interpretation by building a bridge between the ancient stories of the Exodus and our contemporary experiences of transition. She shares most eloquently what she has learned from others, and more importantly, what she has experienced personally. Her words will both enlighten and inspire.” —John R. Claypool, Episcopal priest and author, The Hopeful Heart “Debra Farrington has always been a deeply practical, realistic, and honest writer whose work is companionable and full of stories. In The Seasons of a Restless Heart she is all these things and much, much more. In ‘the time between ending and beginning,’ Farrington finds the poetry as well as the agony of change; she allays our fears and charms our spirits back to faith, hope, and—yes—to charity. This is the handbook of choice for every life in transit.” —Phyllis Tickle, compiler, The Divine Hours “In this daring and hopeful work Debra Farrington illumines how to live into the arduous task of transition so that ‘we stand a better chance of being closer to God when we reach the end.’…  {It is} an extended prayer for the journeys of all in transition. Reminding us that we are God’s beloved, she  offers footholds to guide us through the murky in–between times. This book is beautiful, hopeful, and caressing.” —Anne E. Kitch, Canon for Christian Formation, Cathedral Church of the Nativity, and author, The Anglican Family Prayer Book “It’s all here. The doubts, the hesitations, the fears, even the excitement that mark the small and large transitions of our lives. Farrington illuminates the paths through transitions, providing a helpful tool for readers as they learn to celebrate what was, live meaningfully through the uncertainties of the present, and move into a healthy and whole future.” —Linda Post Bushkofsky, executive director, Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gentle Guide 10 July 2006
By Becky Garrison - Published on Amazon.com
Debra's unique ability to weave personal stories, spiritual reflection and practical suggestions has produced an invaluable aid to assist anyone making an life transition albeit a personal illness, graduation, job change, loss of a love one, divorce or any other crises that befall us in our everyday lives. She speaks as someone who has lived through these dry spells and offers hope for those who cannot see their way clearly that yes there is a tomorrow.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Seasons of a Restless Heart 2 Jan 2013
By Carol A Duncan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A friend recommended this book to me as I'm in a time of transition on many levels in my life. It has helped me navigate this time with clarity and inspiration- also with many practical suggestions that have been extremely helpful. The book was also extremely encouraging, pointing out that the small and large symptoms of stress I've been experiencing are completely normal! I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a spiritual guide to carry them through the storms and stresses we all experience during times transitions in life.
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