on 10 November 2013
I'm planning to read this again each day over Advent and Christmas, as it's supposed to be read, but having loved The Compassion Quest so much I couldn't wait to get my teeth into this one. I always find Advent and Christmas a difficult time for reflection and these short readings are a great help, taking some of the things that often make me feel particularly stressed and helping me to reflect positively on them. Trystan's writing is really easy to read, with his engaging and personal illustrations bringing his ideas (which are both simple and profound) to life.
I am really pleased that the readings continue into January. I think we often get Advent and Christmas round the wrong way, so instead of a having a sense of anticipation and preparation during Advent we do all our celebration before Christmas day, and our fasting afterwards - so the days that follow can be a bit of an anticlimax.
I strongly recommend this for anyone who finds the run-up to Christmas rather frantic and has vague intentions of trying to make it all more "meaningful" this year.
on 29 November 2013
What a brilliant and easily readable book.
Littered with delightful personal anecdotes and golden nuggets of illustration, "Real God in the Real World" takes the reader on an engaging, enlightening journey through the magnificent season of advent and on into Christmas and beyond.
In gently blending new and old, contemporary culture and biblical tradition, Trystan simultaneously folds into one, scripture and life, and in doing so presents us with the God who is in all things, the God who loves us more than we can imagine, and the God who travels with us in all of the ups and downs, joys, sadnesses and mini-dramas of life.
Trystan has a grounded, easy way of writing that is rooted in love but wonderfully free of the haughtiness of the institutional church's theological musings that often leaves the Church and the world seeming disconnected. In peeling back the layers of mystery through clearly understood illustration and anecdote, "Real God in the Real World" has a genuine feeling of warmth, humour and connectivity about it that helps make God, God's love, and in particular, the God who is in all things, understandable and accessible for all.
Recommended reading for thousands, "Real God in the Real World" succeeds in making real the message of Christmas because it brings God closer to humans and it has the same easily accessible and memorable qualities of the likes of Gerard Hughes' God of Surprises. It is both valuable resource and worthy companion for preachers and non-preachers alike as we all journey on through this precious period of the year.
on 18 February 2014
What a lovely book this was to read in the run-up to Christmas, it had the same expectations as an Advent calendar but with much more substance !! you will want to keep turning the pages to read more. Although excerpts from the book were used in our church during Advent, I still enjoyed reading them over again when I came home.
I think it is fair to say that Christmas, for some people, is not a happy time but there are many humorous stories in the book which make it an easy & comforting read. For those of you who have not yet bought the book please don't wait till the end of the year, you will enjoy reading it now & when next Advent comes, I'm sure you will enjoy reading it again
An excellent present especially for those with a birthday at the end of the year.
on 26 December 2013
As a 60-year-old life-long Christian, I decided to 'do' an Advent book this year for the first time. The daily readings were biblically-based and the reflections grounded in real life situations - sometimes humorous! Each day's reading took about 6-10 minutes followed by some thoughts for reflection and action. Even though this period of the year was really busy, I managed to fit this into my schedule each day. It really helped me to use Advent well and I would not hesitate to recommend it to Christians of all traditions.
"Life is about recognizing Christ in all our journeys." So says Trystan Owain Hughes in this new book of rich bible meditations. Hughes writes with a warmth, authentic insight and real delight. The writing style is fresh and engaging. Story-telling punctuates this title with the security and confidence of a seasoned and secure Christ-follower.
There is a great blend of traditional Christmas and contemporary cultural insight in what is written here. There is plenty of gracious challenge surrounding the depth and parameters of the discipleship permeating our lives. Incarnational faith is the most consistent theme offered by way of challenge in this title. For truly 'work becomes worship when you dedicate it to God and perform it with an awareness of his presence.' All of life is engaged with in an earthy faith that is compelling in its nature. This is winsome stuff. The 'Christ in our neighbour' section is the one area of greatest challenge and provocation for me here.
I am such a fan of Trystan's other more complex, challenging and nuanced books. This a great if a somewhat rushed seasonal offering.
It's a perfect antidote to the chaos of the Christmas season:- a worthy companion in the advent season. Here's to this and more Rev T O Hughes writing in the not too distant future!
on 4 December 2015
Reading this in our book club and we are all loving it.
Easy to read, digest, understand but also thought provoking.
Has definitely reminded me of some loving laws to live by and given me a few more.
A wonderful read which I highly recommend. A real must for the run up to Christmas and jewels to hang onto for the year ahead.
Thank you <3
on 12 December 2015
Having read many advent books over the years this is the best, in my opinion. Easy to read, entertaining and very thoughtful. A brilliant guide to help you concentrate on the true meaning of Christmas in the real world. Thank you again Trystan Hughes