40 DAYS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT
Fresh Air for Every Day!
By Jack Levison
Pauline Publications; 143 Waterfield Road, Bandra West, Mumbai 400052.www.paulineindia.org; ISBN 978-81-944299-0-9 - Pp 183. Rs 210/-
At the time of His preparation for His departure from Planet Earth, Jesus said to His disciples: "If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever" (Jn 14:15-16). He also said: "The Holy Spirit…will teach you everything" (Jn 14:26). And so it is that we have 40 DAYS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT offering the reader a taste of what it is like to have the Spirit forever in our lives, rather than as someone who pops in, pulls off a miracle, and heads out!
Do you find yourself staring at a future that seems bleak, with no help of any kind in sight? Do you wish deep down that you had someone around to advocate your cause and thus help change something about your life? Are you confronting some threat in life, perhaps grieving the loss of a person or a thing? Whatever the exigencies of your personal situation, you will discover ample resources in 40 DAYS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, enabling you to practise beneficially the all-encompassing presence of the Holy Spirit.
As a matter of fact, the chief benefit of such an exercise cannot but be the discovery of the Spirit as the durable presence of God in our life from one's first breath to the last, be it at a personal level, in one's faith community, or in the world at large. As for the novel method the book utilises to bring this about, viz. dwelling at length on seven verbs spanning 40 days – BREATHING, PRAYING, PRACTISING, LEARNING, LEADING, BUILDING and BLOSSOMING –it is an experience not to be missed! The reason: they form a sequence that leads the reader from feeling the Spirit deep with into the great outdoors!
The text of 40 DAYS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT follows a simple formula all through: Read – Meditate – Reflect – Pray. A Scripture verse each day helps the reader dig up a valuable nugget of insight which, at the end of 40 days, adds up to a clear demonstration of how the Holy Spirit helps us to blossom beyond ourselves. However, the end of the 40-day application ought not to signal a closing of the book forever. Rather, in the author's own words, the reader would do well to keep "returning time and again to the seven verbs that frame this book and allow them to frame our daily life as long as we have Spirit-breath in us, and as long as the Spirit-breath speaks a fresh word" (p 179) to us.
Now, who would want to miss out on the powerful whiff of fresh air that 40 DAYS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT makes possible every day?
LADISLAUS LOUIS D'SOUZA