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Group Read Selection

Thanking & Blessing—The Sacred Art

Spiritual Vitality through Gratefulness

Jay Marshall, PhD
Foreword by Philip Gulley

5.5 x 8.5, 176 pp, Quality Paperback

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A life filled with blessing is already within your reach.
With ever-increasing pressures building in our lives, we often slip into believing that the world is a burdensome place. As a result, our souls tighten, our hearts become dull, and our joy slowly drains away.
Yet it doesn’t have to be this way. Through penetrating reflections and practical tips for uncovering the blessed wonder in our lives—even in trying circumstances—Jay Marshall shows you how to recapture the goodness, holiness and abundance that saturate our world. The secret lies in opening yourself to divine blessings, which inspires thankfulness, and responding by sharing that spirit with others in acts of thanking and blessing. Practices that will change your perspective, and your life, include:
Expectant Waiting—slowing down to perceive the presence of the Divine within you
Sacramental Living—experiencing the Sacred in every situation
Walking Cheerfully—cultivating a positive disposition
• “Answering that of God” in Others—elevating everyday interactions to the realm of spiritual discovery
Whatever your spiritual tradition, this thoughtful book will help you rediscover your profound connection to God, to others and to the world.
“Enabl[es] us to see [the world] ... as a more welcoming and friendly place.... Offers many useful suggestions on how we can live our lives supported and nourished by learned attitudes of thanksgiving and acts of blessing.Ē
Friends Journal
“A lovely, lovely book. Captures the heartbeat of Quaker spirituality, offering it as a treasure for others to share. Truly a gift for the individual seeker, [as well as for] congregational educational programs and ecumenical book groups.”
Ann K. Riggs, PhD, Associate General Secretary,
National Council of Churches USA
“Filled with wisdom, warmth, and practical advice for living a life full of thankfulness and blessing ... leads you to new ways of experiencing God’s goodness and grace in everyday life.”
J. Brent Bill, executive vice president, Indianapolis Center for Congregations;
Holy Silence and Mind the Light 
“Clear and direct.... Reads and teaches well.... Shares wisdom and personal stories generously and authentically.... Fresh and timely.”
Quaker Life
“A rich mixture of personal reflection and engagement of spiritual traditions from West and East.... Challenges you to venture toward unimagined horizons of faithful living. To read this book is its own blessing.”
Richard F. Wilson, chair, Roberts Department of Christianity, Mercer University
 “If you need a spiritual practice, but are just way too busy, this is the book for you. The multiple examples and practical applications create a gratitude workbook that will set you on the path of discovering the Sacred in the daily-ness of your life.”
Nancy Corcoran, CSJ, author, Secrets of Prayer:
A Multifaith Guide to Creating Personal Prayer in Your Life
“Rich and rounded.”
Spirituality & Practice
“A joyful guide that carries you step-by-step into a life abundant with possibilities for creating your own expression of God’s love [through] simple, daily practices that build into an intentional way of living.”
Margaret D. McGee, author, Sacred Attention:
A Spiritual Practice for Finding God in the Moment
“Clearly and cogently written.... For anyone who would like to learn more about individual spirituality and how that would make for a better world.”
James M. Efird, professor emeritus of biblical interpretation,
Duke Divinity School
“Recommended as an ecumenical resource on living a spiritual life.”
Congregational Libraries Today
“A gentle and mindful book … enter the sacred world it describes and you will be truly grateful.”
Rabbi Karyn D. Kedar, author, The Bridge to Forgiveness:
Stories and Prayers for Finding God and Restoring Wholeness
Jay Marshall, PhD, a gifted teacher noted for his ability to express spiritual insights with compassion and grace, is dean of Earlham School of Religion, a recorded Friends (Quaker) minister, and author of The Ten Commandments and Christian Community, The Beatitudes of Christmas, Family Faults, and Where the Wind Blows. He frequently speaks and leads workshops around the country.
Philip Gulley, author of the popular Harmony series of novels, including Home to Harmony and Almost Friends, is renowned for his wit and keen observations about spirituality and life. A Quaker pastor, he is also author of the nonfiction Porch Talk series and hosts “Porch Talk with Phil Gulley” on an Indiana PBS television station.

About the Art of Spiritual Living Series

Because spirituality is much more than what you thinkóitís what you do. Explaining little-known or misunderstood spiritual practices from around the world with clear instructions on how you can do it, too.

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