Moments of Grace

Reflections on meeting with God

Joy MacCormick

Currently out of print £6.99

These reflections on the moments of grace that pervade our days come from a listening heart, a questioning mind, an attentive eye and an ear attuned to signals of the divine in likely and unlikely places. Joy MacCormick offers her readers the fruits of a faith that is contemplative as well as inquisitive, grounded in truth yet oriented towards hope, both honest and wise. There is encouragement and gentle challenge in this slim volume, and it is a book to be worked with and prayed through, rather than simply read. For those willing to take their time over the questions offered and to pray and journal as suggested by the author, there is much enrichment to be discovered, not simply in the pages of this book, but in the life of the world around.
Nicola Slee, theologian and poet, based at the Queen's Foundation, Birmingham

Content

From desolation to celebration, loneliness to love, Moments of Grace offers pithy, thought-provoking reflections on themes connecting God, faith and the journey of life. Questions for further pondering help the reader make links between head and heart, between what they believe, what they wrestle with believing and what they experience day by day.

Joy MacCormick has written this book to help people have a closer encounter with God in prayer, especially those who may struggle to find a place in conventional church worship. She says: 'One of my most powerful motivations in ministry has been, and still is, "seeing the lights come on in people's eyes" as they discover new ways of thinking about and relating to the Holy, and the impact this has on their experience of "life in all its fullness".'

Joy MacCormick writes on how the book came about

In 2008 when I went to Vaughan Park (the Auckland Diocese's Retreat Centre) for three months as Residential Scholar I had no idea that this book would be the outcome - I had intended to write something completely different. However, within the first two weeks of my time several poems had emerged and the director, the Rev'd John Fairbrother, suggested that I abandon my original plan and work on opening up those, and any other poems I had written, with some comments linking them to scripture and leading into prayer or reflection. Once I got over my initial resistance and accepted that if poetry was surfacing then it was just possible that this was what God intended me to do, the work began.

I discovered that I could not written to demand - the poems came when and as they chose. Sometimes I would become aware of a theme calling me, at other times it might be a phrasae or a couple of lines. Just occasionally an entire poem would present itself. In one case I had been carrying two lines within me for about twenty years, trying unsuccessfully to weave them into something. As I walked the beach at Long Bay one morning, they suddenly came alive and flowed into wholeness. Later I would work on the comments and sometimes reword parts of the poem ore re-arrange the lines. I still didn't really believe it would become a book - let alone that it would be accepted by a recognised international publisher.

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Endorsements

These reflections on the moments of grace that pervade our days come from a listening heart, a questioning mind, an attentive eye and an ear attuned to signals of the divine in likely and unlikely places. Joy MacCormick offers her readers the fruits of a faith that is contemplative as well as inquisitive, grounded in truth yet oriented towards hope, both honest and wise. There is encouragement and gentle challenge in this slim volume, and it is a book to be worked with and prayed through, rather than simply read. For those willing to take their time over the questions offered and to pray and journal as suggested by the author, there is much enrichment to be discovered, not simply in the pages of this book, but in the life of the world around.
Nicola Slee, theologian and poet, based at the Queen's Foundation, Birmingham

This is a book to be savoured in stillness. Through meditations and insightful questions, authentically rooted in the author's own experience, Moments of Grace challenges the reader to enter into the sacred space of their own life story and to there find transformation and healing. A treasure of a book!
Pat Marsh, writer and retreat leader

Author info

A New Zealand Anglican priest, Joy MacCormick has worked in parishes and hospital chaplaincy, led retreats and Quiet Days, and works as a spiritual director and supervisor. Having spent five years as Priest Assistant at Vaughan Park Retreat and Conference Centre in Auckland, with specific responsibility for promoting appreciation of Maori language and spirituality, she is now lives in Wellington.

Reviews

If you keep a journal this book is an ideal companion for those days when the page lies empty and the pen is restless in your hand.

This collection of original poems and short reflections call the reader to delve deeper in to the journey home. Each one, in two short pages, providing fuel for an hour of prayer, a morning of reflection or even a whole day of quiet.

Ideal to keep next to you for the dry times that come to all who would plumb the depths of God's love this is a patchwork quilt of for the journey inward. Taking unexpected turns and twists it calls the reader deeper and deeper into a greater wonder of the one who love us best.

Everyone will find favourites that will touch them, for me When birds no longer flee about being at one with nature and Sacrament of care about hallowing the everyday grabbed my heart, and I look forward to re-visiting these words again and again.

Review by Revd Andrew Dotchin


With Moments of Grace Joy MacCormick offers a practical, accessible resource for daily reflection and prayer.

Each poem draws from Joy's experience and acute insight of the Divine presence moving across spectrums of faith and doubt, peace and disturbance.

This is a book for anyone seeking a compassionate companion voice for the everyday delights and trials of Christian spiritual awareness.

Each poem is accompanied by a succinct commentary providing a view of Joy's own understanding and means for the reader to process their response.

Moments of Grace is a valuable resource for any seeking guidance and support in the daily journey of faith.

Reviewed by The Rev John Fairbrother
Anglican Retreat Centre, New Zealand

Book details

  • ISBN: 9780857462244
  • Published: 24 May 2013
  • Status:
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 112
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