Here is a sampling of feedback from those who have had a quick look at my new, free, online book, Making Life Decisions: Journey in Discernment and at the end some responses from the author.
“I will certainly make this known via my regular newsletter and I am sure there will be some uptake as pastors are always looking for resources to stimulate thinking etc as you well know.”
“Thanks for publishing it in cyber-space for all to use! I'll share it around our team.”
“What a fascinating book concept! And how very practical! I must say this is the first time I've seen blogging used to publish a book, but it seems quite effective. I have placed a link to the book on the Center's links page, as well as in our Resources section. I'm making a note to also mention it in the next Bulletin.”
“Thanks for the gift! I've passed it onto people of our church.”
“Looks very interesting... and I will pass it on to friends.”
“I don't even know how to operate a blog!”
“Thanks Geoff. I like the format ... and I never ever ever thought I'd ever ever ever see a Peter Cook and Dudley Moore transcript in a Christian book (with or without the proviso: 'This dialogue has been shorn of a couple of expletives to make the reflection palatable to a wider readership.'). This reality alone makes the book attractive.”
St Andrews, Scotland
“I was talking with JR yesterday about seeking appropriate training for our Pastoral Elders in their role including 'praying with people seeking discernment'. After reading Parker Palmer's 'Let your life speak' I felt inspired to find some Quakers who could train us in their discernment process. Could your book be appropriate for such training or is it better aimed at the individual seeking discernment? Either way, I'm looking forward to learning from it.”
“What a brilliant idea. And so lovely of you to share all your hard work for free.”
Melbourne via Facebook
“Thanks a lot for sending us your book. Already three have asked for it to use. We will use it for our Home Group to try it out and hopefully we can get the Church Groups involved. The format is great.”
“There certainly seem to be a lot of fabulous resources you've collected and I'm looking forward to quietly working my way through it all myself.”
“Thank you so much for thinking of me as you release your newest book. I am forwarding information first about your e-book link to my good friend whom I have introduced to you already. He has a website for youths that attracts hundreds of thousands of hits all over the world. Your e-book will be an instant hit & blessing if he can place it on his website and you can also put a link on your sites… I will read your book carefully. Many thanks for preparing to leaving a wonderful legacy through your writing.”
“I think I will use your book for me and my office staff while we meet everyday. We will explore possibility to translate into Italian but I'll let you know. We all need some guidance for the present and the future, I do look for God's guidance a lot in the work (service) I do in these days. Thank you for letting your reflections be part of my reflections, your search become also somehow mine.”
“Very user friendly and very attractive and professional. It looks like it contains some priceless wisdom, and I look forward to checking it out. Thanks for thinking of me.”
“Thank you for this book – well done, it looks excellent and is most timely. We have just begun a 20 week discernment lead time for making the decision re the property at the end of March. I will offer this book to people and perhaps use it as a basis for our open prayer times at church – and am always on the look out for more stories.”
“It is a wonderful idea to have this online book! I am sure that it would be very much appreciated for many people. I had a look on the index of the 40 days and it seems very interesting. Do you think that would be possible to use if I translate some topics into Spanish?”
“You have been a busy beaver. What with all the stuff your doing and you managed to write this as well.”
“Thanks for this; respond warmly to the title and initial read. It is always a crucial area and believe will be of great benefit. Will be very happy to look at how I may be able to promote this.”
“Looks really interesting. I'm printing it off to take home and will look at it there - I have also passed it on to a couple of friends.”
“Great to get our ‘free gift’ yesterday. Unfortunately, we are on dial-up so it would take ages to download (besides, we seldom go "on line") and also our printer is wonky, and would probably conk out after just a few pages! But...are we deterred? NO! I have forwarded it on to a good friend who, for a fee, will download and print it off for me! I am sure having paid a little for it will make the "free book" even more precious in my sight! So, by the end of this week, we should have our copy which we look forward very much to reading.”
“Thanks very much for sharing this resource!”
“Thanks for your generosity…. Many of the quotes are from my favourite authors/writers also. Maybe we have something in common too....I will enjoy reading your book- I appreciated your input into my own discernment when at Whitley.”
“Heartfelt congratulations on this new book. I am hoping to read this book sometime in the near future.”
“The topic of your book is certainly very relevant and we look forward to a closer look.”
“Appreciate you for making this freely available for people who ask ‘What am I supposed to do with my life?’ I will use it myself and I have forwarded to friends.”
“RS let me know of the book, and I have already used it in our Christmas letter!”
“Thanks for your very nice gift. It will be very helpful for me.”
“Will look forward to your book with anticipation. I am always looking for suggestions for short talks to give at assemblies and on other occasions so many thanks for keeping me in the loop.”
School Chaplain, Melbourne
“Hi Geoff, thanks for the gift and the work that lies behind it.”
“Thank you very much for your 'early Christmas gift'. It's quite pertinent timing for us… Some reading and contemplation on discernment and decision-making is very timely! Finding direction is never quite as easy as one would like it to be. So, thank you, and we look forward to going through it.”
“Loved the cover photo.”
“I downloaded and will peruse it. Looks great, and I’ve passed on the information to others.”
“The book sounds great - I'll look forward to reading it. I'll also pass it on to others.”
“Just had a look through it. What a great resource for students!”
Theology teacher, Sydney
“I praise the Lord for this wonderful gift from Him through you! I will surely use it as devotional and source of illustrations in our Bible Studies.”
“Will review this when I get a little spare time which is evading me at the moment.”
“Thank you so much for your letter and the online book, I will certainly read and try to print out if possible.”
“Thank you very much, Geoff.”
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
“But a note of appreciation for your gift; it is not often you get something for nothing which really is worthwhile. Almost makes me wish we were continuing with our Home Group.”
“We can only hazard a guess re the book. It’s certainly a fascinating topic and something we have all grappled with during our life journey.”
Baptists for Separation of Church and State and for Compassionate Justice
Saturday, November 24, 2007
Making Life Decisions
A Baptist Pastor and Theologian from New Zealand has written a very fine devotional book titled "Making Life Decisions: Journey In Discernment." You can read it online and follow the spiritual exercises that way or you can download the entire document and have it on your hard drive to print out at your leisure.Learning to make decisions, guided by the Holy Spirit, is so very important in the Christian life and so terribly neglected. I recommend this very highly.
posted by Jim at 11:51 AM
Discernment and making decisions
The Theologians without Borders blog mentions a new online resource/book about Decision Making and Discernment it was written by TWN's Dr Geoff Pound. Geoff is a Kiwi Baptist pastor, who among other roles was principal of Whitley College in Melbourne (Australia) having previously been a consultant to Australian Baptists. Through his own varied life journey, and through assisting individuals and communities discover where God was leading Geoff has gained wisdom about making decisions and about discernment. So now he's written the book! The material is organised into forty "days" and seven group studies. It is not called 40 Days of Discernment, probably not to infringe on someone else's copyright ;-) though the image of Jesus' "40 days in the wilderness runs through much of the book.
The material for each "day" is similarly structured containing…..
If you know someone, or better still some group, who need to work through complex decisions, or who want to nourish the gift of discernment please point them to this book. It is free and online. Geoff is talking of making PDF files available for printout, and may even offer a print version for those who want it.Since this resource is free, there is no advertising budget, so please if you take a look and like it, make a link or tell your friends, because it's "word of mouth" that will get it used.
Responses from Geoff Pound
In a letter to one reader who was asking how the virtual launch was going I said:
“I have been heartened by the feedback thus far. A virtual launch has been an interesting experiment and one I would do again.
The book has been viewed already by people from 20+ countries.
People have appreciated the ease of forwarding the book to others, especially to people who they know who are at the crossroads.
Many people have appreciated the issue of access. It's free! This is impt as my contacts are increasingly international and among the poor.
One Baptist staff team in Italy is working through the book and translating it into Italian as they go.
A theological teacher in Mexico is looking at translating it into Spanish.
I am hoping that my Chinese translator friend who is translating some articles and essays by F W Boreham and publishing Boreham books for the Chinese world will take some time to publish parts of this new book for the 850+ million readers of Mandarin.
I have had a letter or two bemoaning that they are on dial up and their printer is wonky but one guy has paid his mate to print it off.
I think the advantages of an online book will far outweigh the disadvantages.”
Thanks for your feedback. Please pass on the link to others and make a link on your web sites as appropriate.
Making Life Decisions: Journey in Discernment
Image: The front cover of Making Life Decisions: Journey in Discernment.