#6 – Healing Our Broken Humanity by Grace Ji-Sun Kim and Graham Hill (My Top Ten 2020 Reads)

Healing our Broken Humanity by Grace Ji-Sun Kim and Graham Hill is an absolutely fantastic work of spiritual discipline and practice. A large part of the reason for this is that it is different than any other book of spiritual disciplines I have read. There are plenty of books on spiritual practice (two of my favorites are Tish Harrison Warren’s Liturgy of the Ordinary and Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline). While Foster goes through the typical disciplines (prayer, fasting, etc.) and Harrison focused on disciplines in the ordinary day, Kim and Hill bring in a totally different angle and include practices I never considered discipline but probably should have. If I was creating a curriculum or class on spiritual disciplines, these would be the three books I included.

Kim and Hill include practices such as Relinquish Power, Renew Lament and Reinforce Agency. They begin with Reimagine Church which sets the tone, then move in to Lament and Repent. Three chapters in, I was hooked. Each chapter includes practices and resources that would only deepen the experience.

Looking back on this book, months later, I want to go back and re-read it. I want to take time to do some of those practices I did not do before. If you are looking for a spiritual practice book for 2021, this would be worth checking out.

Honorable MentionThe Ox-Herder and the Good Shepherd: Finding Christ on Buddha’s Path by Addison Hodges Hart

This is a fantastic little book reflecting on The Ten Ox-Herding Pictures from Zen Buddhism from a Christian perspective. Hart begins with the point that from a Christian perspective all truth is Gods truth and truth found anywhere ought not be feared. From that, he sees lots of similarities between this story and the Christian story.

A knowledge of Buddhism is helpful but not essential. I think of some of those old apologetic charts that pointed out what was unique about Christianity, and there’s nothing wrong with seeing the difference in various religions. But Hart’s writing is so much more profound and beautiful than a chart listing differences. And why wouldn’t we expect similarities in world religions?

Hart’s younger brother, David Bentley Hart, has been one of my favorite theological writers for years now. This year I read three (I think) of Addison’s books. Addison writes shorter and more pastoral books than his brother, but with a depth not often found in popular level Christian writing. I guess I now have two Harts among my favorite writers.

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