Showing posts from September, 2018

38. Letting God Come Close: An Approach to the Ignatian Exercises

I did the Spiritual Exercises last year, and LOVED the entire experience (so much so that I am doing it all over again with my husband). This was fun to read from the viewpoint of giving the Spiritual Exercises as a Spiritual Director (which is what I am now being trained to do - stay tuned). I really like William Barry's writing style, and I learned nuances about the exercises. I wouldn't necessarily recommend reading this book unless you have gone through them or at least more familiar with them. 

It was a worthwhile read!

Type Two Enneagram Thought for the the Day

EnneaThought® for the Day
Try this Affirmation today: "I now affirm that my happiness does not depend on pleasing others." (Enneagram Transformations, 47)
Does this personality type system have me pegged or what? It will be good as I face new students this morning!

37. Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life

People rave about this book, but I just thought it was OK. He is a philosophy guy, and that is not really my thing. His premise is that we have two halves of life and most people don't really get to the second half of life. We all have to go on a journey to find our true home and true self, and he compares this throughout the book to Homer's epic poem, The Odyssey. That was fun since I have spent a lot of time in that poem.

I think I started "falling upward" pretty early in life. So grateful for a breakdown at 23. I think that is really the best thing that has every happened to me. It was a marker point in history. The humiliation was so public, spread throughout my organization and my office. But it was so freeing at the same time. Pain has a way of doing that. Failure is a path to freedom. So grateful. I found so much about God through that "fall"! So maybe this quote encapsulates it for you. Sorry that I do not have the page number. I read a library book…

36. The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything

I did the online Creighton University Spiritual Exercises last year this time (the new one starts TODAY, in fact), but I loved reading this "encyclopedia" of all things Jesuit to give me an overall view of Ignatian Spirituality. It was fascinating. I don't agree with everything in it, but it has some wonderful things about finding God in all things, making decisions, discovering vocation, and surrendering all to God. I am a big proponent of the Spiritual Exercises for everyone (including evangelicals - very little is decidedly "Catholic" if you are afraid of that). My husband and I along with another couple will be doing the Exercises in Portland starting in six days ( It is such a great deal: prayer exercises every morning, meeting with a spiritual director two times a month, and a half day retreat in a gorgeous setting with other retreatants once a month for only $445!

Here is an National Public Radio with the author:…

35. Life Without Lack: Living in the Fullness of Psalm 23

This is very much in the theme of most of Dallas Willard's books so I am very familiar with the content, but it was nice to be reminded that with God we lack nothing. He has some very practical suggestions for sharing a moment by moment day with Jesus too.
I think I like Living in Christ's Presence much better, and it has similar content. 
Here is another review by someone from

Using the well-known Psalm 23 as his launching point, author Dallas Willard explores what it means to live a life without fear; a life of trust in God; a life without lack. Based on a series of talks given by the author some 20+ years ago, this book was compiled posthumously by a close friend of the author. Willard is an expert at breaking down deep thoughts into digestible bites, and his warmth and true care for the reader is evident in every page. Read this one with pen in hand - lots to ponder and savor.

This review is based on an advance reader copy from the publisher. ( ) NeedMoreShel…

34. The Brothers Karamazov and The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

I read the full book of the Brother Karamazov years ago and love it. This was a nice abridged version of the story. 
I did not know the story of The Idiot, and it was excellent. 
I really enjoy these LA Theatre Works adaptations of classics! 

33. Candlelight: Illuminating the Art of Spiritual Direction by Susan S. Phillips

This author has been doing spiritual direction for several years. She tells the story of her journey with nine of her directees. It is quite beautifully written, and I learned a lot about direction from reading about these journeys.

32. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

The Best Book Ever Written!
This was such a good investment of 58 hours. I loved this narrator. This is my third or fourth time through it, and I loved it even more this time. It remains hands-down my favorite book by a long shot. How much more meaningful to have been to Paris and to see the location of the Barricades and all the places mentioned in the book. It was also such a treat to see the house in which he wrote part of Les Miserables! I was in HUGO HEAVEN at his house, and the old gentleman who looked after the tourist was so tickled at my excitement. 

I read this book in the summer of 1996, culminating with me seeing the stage version in Seattle on my birthday, July 27. This was before I had homeschooled and read all the books fromThe Well-Educated Mind (press hyperlink to see how long it took me). Twenty-two years later, I understood much more of his references.

The writing is so beautiful. The story is amazing. I think everyone should read this book at least one time in their l…

Type Two: Indirection

Type Two EnneaThought® for September 7th

The overall keynote of Twos is indirection. Personal needs and desires are expressed indirectly, through service to others. Twos feel that they cannot go after what they want directly: it must be given to them by others as a sign that they are really loved and appreciated. Notice today when you are being indirect. (Understanding the Enneagram, 78)

Type Two Thought for the Day

EnneaThought® for the DayType Two EnneaThought® for September 4th
When we are identified with our personality, we forget that there is much more to us. Today, let go of your habitual self-image and allow your healthy qualities of unselfishness and altruism to unfold. (Understanding the Enneagram, 360)

George finally took the Enneagram Test. He is a Type 9

I cannot believe how accurately this describes our relationship. George is a very healthy 9 though!

Enneagram Twos and Nines are similar in a wide variety of areas and reactions; both types are interested in nurturing others and in helping people to be better, more comfortable with themselves, and more at peace. Both types also tend to be optimistic and to reframe disappointments in the most positive way possible. This pairing has an outstanding warm, kindly, and good-natured quality about it that each side reinforces. Twos and Nines are easy-going, hospitable, and undemanding, happy to make friends happy and to welcome them into their home. Twos bring to the pair a more outward and interpersonally engaging energy: they would most likely be the first to introduce themselves at a party or to go to someone's aid and comfort if they perceived that the other person had some kind of problem. Twos are proud of their relationship, their home, their family and their friends—and they want t…

31. The Sacred Enneagram: Finding You Unique Path to Spiritual Growth by Heuertz

I loved how this author ties the Enneagram types to contemplative spirituality. There were times where it seemed a little too complicated for me to understand, but I kept swimming through the material, and I did not drown. I think it was the third book I have read on this subject in preparation for a seminar I will be attending in November ( Scroll down the page to find the event). 

I understood so much more after reading this book. I think I took the test on the urging of Michelle Delanty about five years ago (?), but I didn't really know what to do with it and now I look at the page of the Enneagram Institute, and after reading this book, I "get" so much more! I like that this guy is really into not just using the Enneagram for self-awareness but for "reconstruction, where we'll find signposts to help us navigate the reordering of our identity into wholeness" (p. 192). 

My spiritual direction training will also cover th…