What initially drew me to Amy Welborn’s book was curiosity. There are a multitude of daily prayer guides available: What Christian bookstore doesn’t stock many a "Guide to Daily Scriptural Prayer" and "Daily Meditation on Scripture"? I wanted to know if Welborn’s Book of Days was special, if it stood out from the rest. My inkling that it might offer valuable food for good meditation stemmed from her explicit target audience, of which I was a part: Catholic women. She placed the utmost importance on focusing on women’s spiritual needs, and I was drawn to that.
Hers became my daily reading, my daily spiritual refresher, God’s voice, my energy boost. Unlike other daily prayer guides, this one kept me coming back each morning, noon, and night—especially those times when the baby was asleep and I could focus completely on a conversation with Christ.
The truth is, sometimes the Bible just seems so gargantuan, Scripture so difficult to grasp—and my heart is not always prepared to take hold of or wrestle with the truths in it. Furthermore, time is of the essence in our busy world! A gentle push and guiding hand can be a big help to keep the study and meditation of Scripture succinct and effective as a prayer tool, facilitating our need to reach out and be touched by God’s Word. Welborn’s personal, straightforward approach offered spiritual clarity in my hectic life.
Welborn recognizes that the things Catholic women have in common— the daily concerns of family, home, work, and numerous practicalities— are the things that will speak to each of our hearts. She makes Scripture readings accessible through simple reflections that express the undeniable connection between natural and supernatural. Her short meditations and mini prayers, each day tied to a Scripture passage, bind the practical with the spiritual. She speaks about the miracles of everyday life that are sometimes too deep to put into words, or maybe so small that they are often overlooked.
Welborn presents her insights in a sharp, fresh way, and shows how moments in our daily lives are intimately linked to our many-faceted faith.
Particularly poignant for me was Welborn’s reflection on James 4:14, which says, "You do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes." She writes:
I sat in the bleachers on a muggy, fall Florida night, watching a high-school football game. My daughter was rather small at the time, and I was distracted from the action on the field by her adventures. In fact, most of the time, I missed the big plays, alerted afterward by the roar of the crowd.
The first few times this happened, the same strange thought popped into my head: I’d see it on instant replay.
Well, no. Television had spoiled me. Perhaps it had even worked to deceive me. This is life. There are no instant replays.
Lord, teach me to treasure the gift of every moment that you give me.
I am a firm believer that the best way to make the Scriptures accessible is to find a link that binds them to life. Amy Welborn has achieved this goal in A Catholic Woman’s Book of Days. The heart of a Catholic woman— entrenched, expressed, and invested in her everyday living—is able to clearly witness God’s hand working in every moment with the insightful connections to Scripture that Welborn offers. This book is an excellent pick for the bedside table of every Catholic woman.
- Meredith Koopman (from Lay Witness magazine. www.cuf.org)
You can purchase this title here.