The Challenge and the Gift of Being Present

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Format: Paperback

Publication date: November 20, 2015

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For almost thirty years, Availability: The Challenge and the Gift of Being Present has been a trusted guide for cultivating openness and being present to God, self, and others. In this new edition, Robert J. Wicks describes availability as a challenging but spiritually rewarding way to live a more balanced life. 

Drawing insights from his spiritual mentors Henri Nouwen and Thomas Merton, Wicks shows how freely entering into the turmoil and joy of other people’s lives can lead to deeper self-knowledge and a powerful encounter with Christ.

In this simple, accessible book written in his characteristic warm and direct style, Wicks shows how self-awareness, compassion for others, and prayer are but different turns on the same road of finding and living the Truth. Wicks looks at the three dimensions of spirituality through the lens of availability. Looking first at self-awareness, he offers brief chapters on forgiveness, clarity, and the uniqueness of each person. In part two, he examines availability to others as a twofold challenge: negotiating the difficulties inherent in relationships and entering into others’ pain. In part three, Wicks explores availability to God, focusing on letting go and experiencing him.

Product Details

Pages: 160

Trim size: 5 x 7 inches

ISBN: 9781933495910

Imprint: Sorin Books

  • “Many will find this book helpful for spiritual reading.”


    “For anyone who tries to live responsibly in our time and in our society, availability is sure to become a key issue. Dr. Wicks has treated the problems involved with clarity. He gives lively illustrations and always finds a good quotation to underscore his point. But Dr. Wicks goes beyond dealing with the problems of availability. He presents availability as a value and a virtue in Christian spirituality. Thus, his book becomes a primer for learning a much-needed skill. Many will find this book helpful for spiritual reading.”

    Br. David Steindl-Rast, O.S.B.
    Author of A Good Day

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