cover image A RENEWED SPIRITUALITY: Finding Fresh Paths at Midlife

A RENEWED SPIRITUALITY: Finding Fresh Paths at Midlife

Lynne M. Baab, . . InterVarsity, $12.99 (192pp) ISBN 978-0-8308-2344-4

Midway on the journey of our lives, many of us wake to find ourselves in a dark wood called midlife. Fraught with uncertainties about the future and anxieties about our physical and spiritual health, middle age can often be a daunting time, leading to various "midlife crises." Baab, associate pastor at Bethany Presbyterian Church in Seattle and author of Embracing Midlife, joyously contends that midlife can be a rich time where life's apparent losses can be turned into life's rewards. Midlife, she contends, offers wonderful opportunities to grow deeper spiritually, explore new ways of worshipping and serving God and discover satisfying and rich ways of being religious that last well into the later years. Baab suggests several methods of spiritually enriching the middle of our lives, including turning to Celtic spirituality to find God in all seasons, restoring the Sabbath, using contemplative prayer to practice inwardness and drawing closer to God by practicing voluntary simplicity. She uses numerous interviews with midlifers to demonstrate the value that such strategies have brought them. Although Baab's book offers no particularly new insights either about midlife crises or the various spiritual avenues to deal with them, and her perceptions can occasionally be unsophisticated, she honestly and simply confronts the spirituality of midlife. (May)