There have been some very good writings on spirituality, and Arnold improves the list.

Arnold uses the story of Jesus and his disciples eating a shore breakfast together to help us discover the journey toward spiritual wisdom. He divides the book into six sections. Each section is a lesson from John 21 about our spiritual journey. Arnold begins with isolation and moves to discernment, then transformation, vocation, freedom and wisdom. He develops each section recognizing that, as works in progress, we move through these spiritual locales and our spiritual journey is a life journey.

He does a wonderful job sharing the richness of biblical language. “Wilderness,” “fish,” “water,” “love,” “shepherd” are words that come alive to the reader. Another example is the writer’s discussion of nakedness. Arnold acknowledges that “nakedness in Scripture almost always means shame, judgement, or obligation.” However, Arnold looks at Peter’s nakedness in John 21 as “an image of spiritual openness.” There is nothing between Peter and the call of Jesus.

Arnold has a passion for fly-fishing and uses his fishing experiences to speak of another passion: his spiritual journey. He reveals himself through fishing stories and personal relationships. He helps the reader see that our passions, our relationships, our faith communities are all a part of this grand experience of spiritual journey.

Arnold is a gifted writer. He offers help in discovering or rediscovering our spiritual selves. He is honest, passionate, personal, non-judgmental and open. He challenges the reader not to think of spiritual reward as only a heavenly benefit, but to find value in the journey. Life has meaning.

“Where you are right now and what you are doing right now is the meaning of life,” he writes. The way of wisdom leads us to a life of service.

There have been some very good writings on spirituality, and Arnold improves the list.

James K. Byrd is pastor of Third Baptist Church in Owensboro, Ky.

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