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MOMENTS AND DAYS by Michelle Van Loon REVIEWED

MOMENTS and DAYS
(How our Holy Celebrations Shape our Faith)
BY MICHELLE VAN LOON
Published by: NavPress
ISBN# 978-1-63146-463-8
213 Pages

ABOUT BOOK: Michelle Van Loon helps us treasure our time as a gift and a spiritual responsibility, and God as faithfully present in all our moments and days.

People rarely slow down to experience their days, and so they feel rushed through life even as they begin to suspect that life lacks significance. By introducing (and reintroducing) us to the feasts and festivals of the Bible, as well as the special celebrations of the Christian calendar, Moments and Days restores a sacred sense of time throughout our year, enriching our experience of each “holy day” and enlivening our experience of even the most “ordinary time.”

REVIEW: “Take my life and let it be, consecrated, Lord, to thee. Take my moments and my days. Let them flow in endless praise.”

This author has helped us all to be able to do this one holiday at a time. First of all she gives her testimony that will blow you away and then she talks about her journey to walking a blended life. She grew up Jewish and then became a Christian in her 20’s. At that time the Jewish and Christian history to each holiday had more meaning for her. She says, “Our eternal God has given us the slice of eternity, right here and now, in which to live for and with him.”

I like how she talked about her journey and how the history of When, Why and How people observed these holidays and celebrations changed her life. She says, “Following a calendar that tells us our lives are not all about us is a powerful place to learn to inhabit that sacred gift of time. When Paul acknowledged not all followers of Jesus see specific days as Holy, he wasn’t suggesting that everyone in church needed to hit the ‘delete’ button on the discussion (Rom 14;5-10)

He was instead, encouraging them to give one another lots of grace as they sought how to honor God together in their community. He never discounted the value of the weekly/yearly rhythm of Holy days. He simply wanted the Jewish and Gentile followers to understand that the finished work of Jesus the Messiah fulfills the meaning of these festival days: (Colossians 2:16-17”) “That reality must shape our ordinary moments and our sacred days…Those Holy days are gifts of love from God designed to help us understand the nature of eternal life.”

In Part one Jewish Calendars she breaks down by different Holidays -

Part two The Christian Calendars Advent, Epiphany, Holy Week, Pentecost, Lent Easter, Christmas, etc.

I found this very informative and how it brought a clearer view of why we celebrate this holiday in the first place. This author has a glossary of words and recipes to help celebrate the different holidays. Some of the recipes listed are for the Sabbath – Tia Sarah’s Special Honey Challah, Peral’s Noodle Kugel (Rosh Hashana – Shavuot) Sylvia’s Cheese Cake (Shavuot, Easter)

If you’d like do a deeper study into these holidays/traditions the author has additional reading sources and a side by side comparison of the Jewish, Catholic/Protestant Orthodox calendars. This book will help readers grasp a deeper understand of these holidays that will draw them closer to the Savior all the while creating a close sense of community within their families.

ABOUT AUTHOR: Since coming to faith in Christ at the tail end of the Jesus Movement, Michelle Van Loon's Jewish heritage, spiritual hunger and storyteller's sensibilities have shaped her faith journey and informed her writing. She is a regular contributor to Christianity Today's popular Her.meneutics blog. She has pieces in four recent devotional projects and has authored three books. She's been a church communications director, served on staff at Trinity International University, and currently serves as a consultant for a handful of small faith-based non-profits. She's currently enrolled part-time at Northern Seminary. She's married to Bill, and is mother to three and grandmother to two. Her writing focuses on issues of the church and spiritual formation. She blogs at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/pilgrimsroadtrip/.

Michelle's book, If Only: Letting Go Of Regret (Beacon Hill Press, 2014) won an Award of Merit in the Christian Living category of Christianity Today's 2015 Book Of The Year list

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine www.bookfunmagazine.com

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