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The Inner Voice of Love

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  6,165 ratings  ·  348 reviews
This is Henri Nouwen's "secret journal." It was  written during the most difficult period of his life, when he suddenly lost his self-esteem,  his energy to live and work, his sense of being loved, even his hope in God. Although he experienced excruciating anguish and despair, he was still able to keep a journal in which he wrote a spiritual imperative to himself each day ...more
Paperback, 144 pages
Published January 19th 1999 by Image (first published 1996)
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Mina Michael مجرد رأي أنا عايز اضيفه
طبعاً من حقكم كل الحق كناشرين للكتاب بعدم السماح أو عدم الموافقة لوجود الكتاب على الانترنت
لكن هو بمجرد نزول الكتاب على أى موقع…more
مجرد رأي أنا عايز اضيفه
طبعاً من حقكم كل الحق كناشرين للكتاب بعدم السماح أو عدم الموافقة لوجود الكتاب على الانترنت
لكن هو بمجرد نزول الكتاب على أى موقع .. كل المواقع بتاخد الكتاب وتنزله بلينكات جديدة وهكذا إلى أن يصبح من الصعب إلغاء وجود الكتاب من على الانترنت
الكتير من المواقع ديه هدفها خدمة الناس بتوفير الكتب ديه ومعتقدش إن ليهم ربح من توفير لينك الكتاب
فبما انكم انتم موقع هدفه الخدمة ومؤسسة لخدمة المشورة .. فنشر الكتاب بين الناس على الانترنت يفيد الناس ولا يقدم أى ضرر .. فهي أيضاً تعتبر خدمة
مرة أخرى أكرر أن لكم حقوق الملكية الفكرية للكتاب ومن حقكم طلب حذفه من المواقع
لكن أتمنى منكم كمؤسسة خدمية أن تقوموا بإتاحة الكتب الخاصة بكم على الانترنت لأنها تسمح بعدد أكبر للناس بقرائتها والاستفادة منها

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 ·  6,165 ratings  ·  348 reviews

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Oct 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
After Death comes WHAT?

Anxious? Worried? Depressed? Or perhaps you’re hyperactive without a root. Paranoid when the Bad Guys are getting vague and increasingly nebulous...

Welcome to the club. For Father Nouwen (and myself) have been there and done that. And HE’s attained the summit of the mountain (not me)!

And found his work is only beginning.

When your creative sap refuses to flow, read this. Read it if you’re insecure and desperately uncertain about where all your possibilities have disappea
Brad Syverson
Oct 16, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This is a book to be read and absorbed in small doses. It is a deeply personal and very honest book written during a time of great pain. But it is a hopeful book. It's as though Nouwen is writing to himself from place of hope. My sense is that, through effective advice and sheer force of will, Nouwen imagined a place of hope from which he could write to himself sitting in despair. From this imagined place, Nouwen looks back and sees a path to wholeness, a path to an existential, a real place of ...more
Oct 20, 2008 rated it it was ok
Tainted. My point of view is too tainted to look at this work objectively, and anyone who reads my review of this book should know that.

My reaction to this book was deeply personal and disturbing. This book is a compilation of Nouwen's journal entries over a series of months when he felt great dispair and angst. His colleagues felt the journal would serve as a great instructional tool for others, and hence this little book was born.

However, drawing from my personal experience, I could clearly he
Aug 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017, nonfiction, religion
I've been meaning for some time to read Henri Nouwen, a Christian writer I've always associated with profound spirituality, intelligence and wisdom. This book might have been a weird one to start with, but it does make me want to read more of his work. It's a journal he kept during one of the lowest periods of his life.
"Within me there was one long scream coming from a place I didn't know existed, a place full of demons."

It was written for his eyes only, short entries he calls "spiritual imper
Katie R
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The introduction implores the reader to take this book slowly. I have been reading this off and on for a while and I will say taking it slowly has helped me grasp the truth as well as pray and reflect on the themes Nouwen brings up in my own life.
Josh Skaggs
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
One of the most profound and personally significant books I've ever read. ...more
Feb 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
These are selections from a journal that Henri Nouwen wrote when he was in the midst of a very dark season in his life. He writes in the second person singular, saying things like, “You are called to live out of a new place, beyond your emotions, passions, and feelings. As long as you live amid your emotions, passions, and feelings, you will continue to experience loneliness, jealousy, anger, resentment, and even rage, because those are the most obvious responses to rejection and abandonment.” W ...more
Jun 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: all
Imagine that a priest, writer, and professor with great spiritual wisdom underwent a spiritual collapse. What would he tell himself in these “dark nights of the soul”? What kind of wisdom would he apply to his own life after fifty years of theoretical and practical investigation of his relationship with God? When at the edge of despair, what would he remember the most?

Henri Nouwen’s personal spiritual journal of the most difficult period of his life reads just like that – these are deeply person
Evan Hays
Feb 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: devotional
What an excellent book. Nouwen has really been through it, and so you trust him as you helps guide you through your troubles. There were so many excellent and deep insights in this book. It took me a while to get through, but that is because it is a series of devotionals meant to be read slowly and steadily. I can see a lot of growth in my life in the last year, and this book is a significant part of that.

This is one of the best books that you will find that contributes a true Christ centered vi
Gavin Breeden
Mar 31, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A sort of journal written by Nouwen during a really dark period of his life. Each chapter is very short and written as an imperative to himself in the second person, e.g. "Accept Your Identity as a Child of God." At times it can feel a bit too abstract or so personal that it's hard to connect with. But I was surprised at how frequently I deeply connected with the insecurities and fears he was addressing in himself, particularly those related to the ministry. I plan to read it again very soon and ...more
Brett Leyde
Feb 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
My Favorite nouwen work read so far. So practical and helpful for directing inward affections to Jesus.

Some quotes:

You have to move gradually from crying outward—crying out for people who you think can fulfill your needs—to crying inward to the place where you can let yourself be held and carried by God, who has become incarnate in the humanity of those who love you in community. No one person can fulfill all your needs. But the community can truly hold you.

But keep saying, “God loves me, and Go
Apr 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I used this book for a study during Lent with a small group. The book is a journal Nouwen kept during a particularly troubling time in his life, when he asked himself some deep questions about who he was and why he was not at peace with himself. My small group was also looking at the discipline of journaling as we read this particular journal. Some good conversation came out of our group as we read through Nouwen's journal. It forced us to decide if we were going to be as self-revealing as Nouwe ...more
Apr 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
This was great, although I think I'm going to have to read it again, more slowly, at some point. Henri Nouwen, a priest and theologian, wrote the contents of this book as journal entries during a dark period of his life, when he suffered from loneliness and depression. (Wikipedia tells me that those close to him knew that he was also gay, so he was likely struggling with that as well.) The conclusions he comes to are really valuable for any Christian who's struggling. ...more
Aug 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nouwen kept this journal during a crisis when he was struggling with depression and doubt. These are his daily reflections that helped him move past the dark time. Good encouragement to know God and His love better, and to turn down the volume of our own fears and concerns with what the world thinks.
Lori Harris
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The BEST book by Nouwen I’ve ever read. A must read for all believers.
Jo Ann
Jun 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ I read this slowly, like a slow-drip IV. One of the most honest struggles with pain, anguish, depression I have ever read and yet, filled with hope and encouragement.
Kerolos Maged
SO REAL , Too deep , beautiful ,Touching and obviously can be a life changing (experience / book) ! 💕
Feb 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
A collection of private journal entries by an openly gay but celibate priest, The Inner Voice of Love is a meditation on accepting the kinds of love that are available when the love you want is not available. Because the author was a priest, many of the meditations specifically address accepting divine love, not as a metaphor but as a real, personal gift from an ever-present deity, so I personally had to translate a lot of the concepts into metaphors; but even so, these meditations create a spac ...more
Berni Phillips
Jan 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: religious
I had resisted doing the Goodreads challenge because I read stuff like this which is of no interest to my friends. But I read it so I'll count it. It's been my bedside reading for a while.

This is a book of short (1 to 3 pages) meditations by Nouwen when he was experiencing a dark time in his spiritual life. They are easy to identify with and uplifting to read, especially knowing that he came out of this stronger.

Br. Bill Bolts, S.M., introduced me to Nouwen's writings when he was the adult faith
Erika Castiglione
Sep 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book begins with a warning not to read too many of these spiritual imperatives at once and I think that is good advice. There is so much to contemplate with each entry in Nouwen's secret journal. I especially liked "Control Your Own Drawbridge" and "Own Your Pain." I found myself feeling sad for Nouwen as I read, though (even though I knew the purpose of the book was for the reader to reflect on him/herself as opposed to viewing it as a memoir). I took some comfort in the hope that he is no ...more
Melody Shores
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Healing, hopeful

This book is excellent for anyone who is going through the pain of rejection, abandonment, self-doubt or feelings of worthlessness. You do not need to be Christian to recognize Nouwen's universal truths. Every small chapter, or "spiritual imperative" is a gem, worth highlighting in its entirety. I read this book once through, and then went back through slowly to highlight particularly helpful passages. Now I am eager to retreat for awhile, to do the solitary work I must do to bec
Rick Davis
Oct 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
This is one book read that I would recommend to any Christians who are recovering from depression and trying to piece their lives back together. There are moments of theological wonkiness, sure, but Nouwen's meditations get at the heart of the fear, insecurity, and neediness that people who are depressed struggle with. More importantly, he points them to Christ who is the only one who can fulfill all their needs, and shows practical ways to find belonging as a child of God without expecting more ...more
Dec 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is Henri Nouwen's journal that takes us through his own personal journey with depression. He was encouraged to publish it so others could see that the master too was human. An important work, especially for us novices. When you are struggling with your own path, it is good to see that those who continued on had struggles to. I give this volume to all I work with who are new on the journey. ...more
Adam Lorenz
Oct 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
'Do not read too many of these spiritual imperatives at once! They were written over a long period of time and need to be read that way...

Too much salt might spoil it, but a little at a time can make it tasty!'

I took Nouwen's suggestion to heart - never rushing. It was worth it. For the discouraged or those of us who often sense a distance from God, Nouwen's words continually reminded me that I am not alone.
Jan 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
As I said in another review, this book had a powerful impact on me in conjunction with Brennan Manning's Ruthless Trust.
I have profited from all Nouwen's books, but this and The Return of the Prodigal have been the most important.
Dec 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
Henri Nouwen is one of my favorite authors. I resonate quite a bit with his introspective nature and keen awareness that this world is not our home. I enjoy his thoughts about solitude, community, dependence, and a variety of other relationship dynamics.
Susan Halvor
Oct 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book was so helpful and encouraging to me. It's one I'll come back to again and again, especially at those moments of feeling unlovable. I forget we all have those moments, and Nouwen speaks to them gently, compassionately, and with wisdom. ...more
Feb 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spiritual
One of my favorite books to use as a daily devotional. Can be read year after year and enjoyed with each reading. God has used this book to encourage, convict, and guide me as I seek Him.
Jan 04, 2012 added it
What a gripping book; much to reflect on here. I am looking forward to studying Nouwen's spiritual imperatives with a friend. ...more
Sep 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012-read
Overall, I found this book helpful, hopeful, and challenging, though I was cheesed out here and there.
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Henri Jozef Machiel Nouwen (Nouen), (1932–1996) was a Dutch-born Catholic priest and writer who authored 40 books on the spiritual life.

Nouwen's books are widely read today by Protestants and Catholics alike. The Wounded Healer, In the Name of Jesus, Clowning in Rome, The Life of the Beloved, and The Way of the Heart are just a few of the more widely recognized titles. After nearly two decades of

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“When suddenly you seem to lose all you thought you had gained, do not despair. You must expect setbacks and regressions. Don't say to yourself "All is lost. I have to start all over again." This is not true. What you have gained you have gained....When you return to the the road, you return to the place where you left it, not to where you started.” 173 likes
“When people show you their boundaries ("I can't do this for you") you feel rejected...part of your struggle is to set boundaries to your own love. Only when you are able to set your own boundaries will you be able to acknowledge, respect and even be grateful for the boundaries of others.” 110 likes
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