Margaret D. McGee

Sacred Attention: A Spiritual Practice For Finding God in the Moment

from SkyLight Paths Publishing

“Does God communicate through the natural world? Through the slug on the compost pile, the leaf on the lawn, the stone tumbled on the beach, the air that feeds my lungs, the dreams that fill my nights? How will I know unless I pay attention?”
-— from the Introduction

In Sacred Attention, you will discover ways to develop a practice of attention as a means of talking—and listening—to God. Framed on the Christian liturgical year and paired with images of the seasons of the earth, each chapter includes an insightful narrative which illustrates the surprising richness to be found in every moment. Following each narrative is a prayer, suggested scripture readings and a specific exercise you can use to develop your own practice of attention as a means to better connect with God.

“If God is with us—within, among, and between every atom and every being—then a conversation with God is not with a remote and distant Being, but with a fellow pilgrim.”
—- from the Introduction

“A quirky but perceptive guide….McGee writes from a Christian perspective but many Buddhists will also feel at home.”
—- Publishers Weekly

“Leaps alive with insightful stories, honest reflection and practical suggestions of finding the Divine in the daily-ness of our lives.… A must for anyone seeking or struggling to create a spiritual practice.”
—- Nancy Corcoran, CSJ, author, Secrets of Prayer: A Multifaith Guide to Creating Personal Prayer in Your Life

“Attention is the great problem of our distractable age. Here’s a solution!”
-— Bill McKibben, author, Deep Economy and The End of Nature


Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Slow Down — Pay Attention
    About the Liturgical Calendar
    and Sacred Attention

1. Season of Waiting
    ADVENT

2. Leap of Faith
    CHRISTMAS

3. To See with New Eyes
    EPIPHANY

4. Hearty Fish Soup
    LENT

5. Just Freedom
    EASTER

6. When the Still, Small Voice Starts Yelling
    PENTECOST

7. Where Possibilities Burn Bright
    ORDINARY TIME

8. Bees in the Blackberries
    ORDINARY TIME

9. Real Live Grizzly Bear Love
    ORDINARY TIME

10. Lectio Divina Meets Haiku
     ORDINARY TIME

11. The Newcomer and the Old-Timers
     ORDINARY TIME

12. By Myself in a Cloud of Witnesses
     ORDINARY TIME

Afterword: Return
Practicing Sacred Attention
Suggestions for Further Reading

Selected Work

Books

Widely translated first edition of the best-selling tutorial for Microsoft Access, relational database software for Windows.


"Captures the heart essence of a moment and the feelings it evokes by paying attention to small things and honoring the sacredness of everyday life.”
Lucy Wynkoop, OSB, coauthor, Lectio Divina: Contemplative Awakening and Awareness


"Beautiful, passionate and very personal… reminds us again of why we need to be aware of the present moment: that’s where God is.”
-— John Lionberger, author, Renewal in the Wilderness: A Spiritual Guide to Connecting with God in the Natural World


“An offbeat, engagingly written, appealingly uncertain spiritual memoir.”
-- Publisher’s Weekly

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