Here is a 40-day program based on short quotations from Kathleen Norris's books and additional daily material that includes passages from the Bible, questions to ponder, a Psalm fragment, journal reflections, and prayers. In her preface, editor Kathryn Haueisen talks about Norris as a poet, a preacher, a student of early church theologians and monastics, and an architect of words.
We recall that when we first read Norris's spiritual memoir Dakota we realized we were in the presence of someone with a reverent sense of place and a keen appreciation of the beauty of solitude. In Amazing Grace, we were impressed with Norris's combination memoir, theological tract, cultural commentary, and tribute to worship. A small book of hers which really caught our fancy was The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy, and Women's Work, which demonstrates that God is present in everything we do even those little and repetitive tasks which take up so much of our time.
Here is one of the quotations that is explored in this paperback:
"Prayer was impossible for me for years. For a time I was so alienated from my religious heritage that I had the vainglorious notion that somehow, if I prayed, I would cause more harm than good. But when a priest I knew asked me to pray for him he'd been diagnosed with a serous illness my 'yes' was immediate, sincere, and complete. I wasn't sure that I could pray well and was shocked that the priest would trust me to do so. But I recognized that this was my pride speaking, the old perfectionism that has dogged me since I was a child. Well, or badly, that was beside the point. Of course I could pray, and I did." (from Amazing Grace)