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God Of Surprises

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  195 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Recognised as one of the great books of spiritual guidance. It is a lovely, wise and lucid book of deep humanity. Above all, it is a useful book - a book to be read by those who find it hard to forgive themselves: the stumblers and agnostics who hardly dare believe that God is within them.
Published January 22nd 1996 by Darton,Longman & Todd Ltd (first published November 4th 1985)
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 ·  195 ratings  ·  20 reviews

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Gerard Hughes writes really absorbing books without pushing religious belief. I found it well worth reading and I like books that make me think.
Stuart Jennings
Jun 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion
A book that combines psychological and spiritual insights into both our own humanity and the goodness and love of God, a transforming book whose message can be liberating for the reader who takes its message to heart
Janet Brown
Aug 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book took apart what I thought I knew, challenged my apathy, correctly anticipated most of my doubts and areas of weakness, and gave me a new way to explore my faith. Genuinely thought-provoking; a kind, loving book.
Richard Ryan
Apr 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christian-books
A wonderfully powerful, deeply spiritual book.
Jan 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: rereads
Gerard W. Hughes was a Roman Catholic priest, born in Scotland, and the writer of this devotional book. I read it a few years ago and was captivated by his thoughts about finding God in unexpected places - such as in ourselves as he has made us in his image. We may fight against finding him there because it means we are not our own since everything we are or have comes from God and has to be given back to him. Hughes found human beings complicated "with layers upon layers of consciousness", most ...more
Ron W.
Feb 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For those who prefer "theology - lite," this book is great. Hughes centers on Jesus's teaching regarding a hidden treasure, and how we may obtain it. The Kingdom Jesus spoke so much about is not that far away at all, and is the most priceless thing ever. ...more
Feb 06, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I say ‘Finished’ but I just gave up. I really liked this book when I first read it in my early 20s but now it just feels pedantic and Jesuitical. Ah well.
Jan 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theology
Definitely a book to read slowly and probably one to be re-read multiple times to get the full effect. The exercises were very useful though they felt unevenly spread throughout the book with some chapters having several large meaty exercises and some having none at all. In terms of content and presentation the book is very good and will give you an awful lot to think about, it certainly changed my view on a lot of topics, especially the seeking guidance chapters. The only thing that is a bit ja ...more
Dec 15, 2015 rated it liked it
This is a guidebook for the journey of life which began at conception and will end at death. It is written especially for bewildered, confused or disillusioned Christians, who have a love-hate relationship with the Church. God is a ‘God of Surprises’ because He is not remote or distant, dwelling only in tabernacles and temples of stone, but near to us. Smiling and waiting to embrace us despite our confusion, bewilderment, anger etc. This book aims to suggest some ways of detecting the hidden tre ...more
Neil Saltmarsh
Feb 06, 2021 rated it liked it
It is a bit patchy. Some parts are great, some not so. I think that Gerard Hughes' railing against the church in which he serves, a little intriguing as I wonder what else he would have done. However I applaud him in his honesty. A little dated but the problems persist the same with those that he identified. ...more
Iain Every
Feb 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Hugely positive influence on me as a teenager.
May 06, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone feeling disconnected
If Gerard Hughes had expressed during the Inquisition what he'd written here, he would surely have been branded a heretic. Hughes openly challenges many of the most commonly-observed pillars of organized religion but productively offers solutions for churches progressing with the times to serve modern humanity.

As a baptized Catholic who seeks meaning in life and spirituality, yet feels alienated by organized religion, I found this book to be a great comfort. Perhaps it was because Hughes wrote t
Henry Tegner
As one who is, more likely than not, within a decade or two of his demise, I ponder often on spirituality and the question of 'life after death'. This book was recommended. I had a Christian education (Anglican, not Roman Catholic)but Christianity never really 'caught' for me. I am, by nature, a Humanist. This book seemed to accept the Gospels as a 'given' - an axiom if you like. This is problematic for me, because I am also a scientist and more inclined to accept things according to the evidenc ...more
Tim Crabtree
Jun 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, religion
A fantastic little book about prayer, our inner lives, and how we grow (taking steps forward and backward) in interacting with God. Also has many helpful practical suggestions on how to take ideas about prayer and make them applicable.
Jul 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: motivational
Inspirational reading. Well-written.
Paul Taylor
Feb 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
True to its title it has surprised me. If like me you seek a better understanding of God, this will be a very useful guide. Well reasoned, sequential and for me at least; inspiring.
Feb 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book broke my heart by teaching me more about the goodness of God and His regard towards us.
Nov 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best.
Nov 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-books
a book to read slowly over and over again
João Moreira
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