Monday, December 02, 2013

Book Review of Daily Feast: Meditations from Feasting on the Word, Year A by Bostrom, Caldwell, and Riess

Daily Feast: Meditations from Feasting on the Word, Year A

Daily Feast: Meditations from Feasting on the Word, Year A
by Kathleen Bostrom, Elizabeth Caldwell, and Jana Riess
ISBN 978-0-664-23796-7
WJK Books
Reviewed by Clint Walker

As many of the readers of this blog know, I review several items that come out of the Feasting on the Word line of resources for Bible teachers, bible students and pastors. At the forefront of this series are the lectionary based commentaries on Scripture that provide a four-fold interpretation of Scripture, guiding the pastor or teacher through understanding what the text meant then, how we can interpret it for today, as well as how we can teach and preach the texts included in the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL).

The Daily Feast devotional takes excerpts from the commentaries on the RCL for a daily devotion. Again designed especially for those who want to go deeper in their understanding of the Scriptural texts in the lectionary, each week begins with an excerpt of the Scriptures for the week. Then, throughout the week, different quotes are drawn from the commentaries regarding each text, with a brief guide to responding to the text and the teaching, as well as a brief prayer. At the end of the week, the Daily Feast adds in quotes from each of the texts, again preparing the reader for worship on Sunday, where the passages will be read, and possibly preached upon.

I have used this resource off and on as a daily devotional since I moved to Hot Springs, and began to pastor a church that was more attuned to the lectionary. It has been helpful in keeping me grounded to the texts for the week, and in establishing a strong rhythm between my Sunday mornings, and my spiritual formation the rest of the week.

I would also recommend reading the introduction to this devotional, which gives several helpful hints on how to fruitfully engage the text. Approaches include...

  • Use as an opening devotion for committee or church staff meetings
  • Use when appropriate for community endeavors when a devotion and/or prayer is called for 
  • Use to prepare the preachers heart to preach the word
  • Journal in partnership with these readings
  • Personal meditation on Scripture
Whatever your approach, I recommend picking up this devotional. You won't always agree with everyone's perspective. I doubt all the contributors agree with one another! However, reading through this devotional willl help you engage the RCL texts more personally as a pastor or lay person, and ad depth to your preaching, your teaching, and your spiritual journey.

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