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The Attentive Life: Discerning God's Presence in All Things
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The Attentive Life: Discerning God's Presence in All Things

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  84 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Your attention, please. That's what God wants, Leighton Ford discovered. It's the path to becoming like Christ. Distractions, fear and busyness were keeping Ford from seeing God's work in and around him. He was missing God. So he began a journey of longing and looking for God. And it started with paying attention. In these pages, he invites you to journey with him. Using t ...more
Hardcover, 225 pages
Published April 1st 2008 by IVP Books
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There are a lot of reasons I love this book. I've read it over a long period, in small bits at a time so that I could contemplate, absorb, and apply. I still tend to operate at a fast pace - but this book reminds me to frequently pause and observe so that I can get a glimpse of God working in my life. Recently, I find myself thinking of God at the various hours of the day (Vigils, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, None, Vespers, and Compline). That structured thinking helps me focus my attention on God ...more
This was a book that I read as a part of a reading group that I'm in. I started reading it, not expecting much (shame on me!). Much to my surprise this was a tremendous read. Not only was it inspiring but it was also simply written with practical advice and steps on how to be more "attentive" to God. Ford uses his own life experiences to urge the reader to learn how to focus on God, at all times and in all things. We live such busy, overly sensitized lives, in which we rarely slow down to just s ...more
Marcia Pottenger
An excellent book for anyone who is interested in paying attention to God. Here's a quote:

"Attentiveness may be just the opposite of ‘fixing our attention.’ Instead it involves a letting go of our usual need to control, an opening of ourselves to what we are being told or shown."
Sue Odenwelder
PAY ATTENTION! That is what God is calling us to do.

This is a MUST read for Christians seeking a closer & more rewarding walk with God - and for those seeking answers for their purpose in this life.

Quote from the book: "Paying attention is not a way by which we make something happen, but a way to see what is already given to us." This is what the book is about.

This is not a book to just sit down & read through - it takes time and contemplation. I like to journal, and did so with this
The beginning and middle of the book were a four, the very end was more of a two. The ending was a little slow for me. Maybe it was supposed to be as it was about the end of life? I may have missed it. This will be a re-read on another Lent, as it did help me to become more attentive in prayer. The author included some interesting quotes from other authors that I now want to read. Very interesting and educational.
Kind of a nice devotional, and definitely a pleasant read. However, it is kind of like talking to your elder grandparent (and Leighton Ford *is* old) and listening to rambling reminiscences that are difficult to connect together. He couldn't quite decide whether he was using 'the hours' as a metaphor for life, or as a model for prayer and introspection. It would have been better if he had done one or the other, not both.[return][return]In short, I was kind of disappointed because I really would ...more
I don't know much about Leighton Ford, but I do know that he is an excellent writer. This is an excellent book about the divine hours and the spiritual life. Ford introduced me to some new resources for my spiritual life.

I have been trying to pay more attention to what Ford calls "discerning God's presence in all things". What he does is remind me that paying attention is not difficult. All of our world is from God and all of it, trees, mountain views, the people should show us God's presence.

I started reading THE ATTENTIVE LIFE last December while on an Advent retreat and covered a lot of it quickly. But once I jumped back into work and pre-Christmas prep, the reading fell to the side. So I started over again and took it more slowly, as common-sense attentiveness or a good spiritual director would advise. Ford's use of the traditional monastic hours as a template combined with his own life experience, insight, and wisdom make this a valuable book to read and live through. Now I star ...more
Aug 03, 2011 Bruce added it
Leighton Ford is the brother-in-law of Billy Graham and has been doing ministry for over 50 years. He wrote a book about how we can be (and need to be) aware of God presence throughout our day. As he expressed it, "to see God in all things and to see all things in God". It was a good book, but his writing style was a little poetic and contemplative for me. But if you like that kind of style, this could be a great book for you. His concepts and ideas were very good.
Through his own stories and experiences, The author shares his thoughts on how to take the moments and hours in our life and pay attention to them. A wonderful book for those who feel their lives are hurried in so many directions that they can't slow down enough to spend time with God.
Maybe I wasn't paying attention (ha ha) but I thought this would have more suggestions about how to live a contemplative life. Instead, I felt like it was a mish mash of the author's experiences with how monks live and quotes that he likes.
Ford likened the Divine Hours to both the passage of our days and the movement of our lives, which was interesting and insightful. The narrative strayed at times, but had moments of clarity that I appreciate.
This was another good book that has principles applicable to all belief systems. It is a Christian book in very Christian language.. but it is about mindfulness.

A recommendation from my pastor. I really liked some of it, but a lot of it was boring, so I had to read it in small portions.
Virginia Knowles
I don't agree with everything in it, but it is very thoughtful and inspiring on the deeper Christian life.
Bill Welte
One of the best and most practical books I've read on Spiritual Discipline and the contemplative life.
Good, easy read book about how to be attentive and aware of how God is working in the world.
Todd Coe
Opened my eyes to see that I need to slow down and spend more time with God...
Lindsay Olesberg
Contemplative Christianity from an older evangelical leader.
Pay attention...Christ is present if we but learn to notice!
love this book, reading it a 2nd time.
Feb 22, 2010 Lu marked it as to-read
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