It's not what you do. It's who you are. The Art of Being explores what it really means to "be" who we are. Here you will find an encouraging, challenging companion on your journey toward discovering your true identity and toward finding a satisfaction that lasts. Contributors include Jonathan Foreman(Switchfoot), Sara Groves, Matthew Odmark(Jars of Clay), Gloria Gaither, Don and Lori Chaffer(Waterdeep), Tammy Trent, and Linford Detweiler(Over the Rhine).
“There’s an art to being anxious for nothing. There’s an art to being at peace with God, your neighbor, your world, and yourself. Oh what a great friend, follower, and citizen you are if you are at peace just being you. Start there, and you can go anywhere.”
–from the foreword by Charlie Peacock
It’s Not What You Do. It’s Who You Are.
In today’s achievement-oriented culture, it can feel impossible to separate who we are from what we accomplish. We introduce ourselves by announcing what we do for a living. Endless “to do” lists drive us away from self-discovery and true contentment. We hope that our successes will cause our busyness to feel worthwhile, yet despite our accomplishments, we long for something more.
Featuring original essays and stories from a diverse list of contributors including Jonathan Foreman (Switchfoot), Sara Groves, Matthew Odmark (Jars of Clay), Gloria Gaither, Don and Lori Chaffer (Waterdeep), Tammy Trent, and Linford Detweiler (Over the Rhine), The Art of Being explores what it really means to “be” who we are. Here you will find an encouraging, challenging companion on your journey toward discovering your true identity–and toward finding a satisfaction that lasts.
Life Is Not a Resumé
Higher bank balances, stylish clothes, and popularity among our peers may look impressive on the surface, but these things don’t satisfy our craving for contentment. True satisfaction is found when our spirit is fed with a sense of purpose. The stories and reflections in The Art of Being will inspire you to resist the disappointing pursuit of the temporal and explore a deeper understanding of who you are as the unique artwork of your Creator.
Constance Rhodes is the founder and director of FINDINGbalance, an organization dedicated to eating, image, and lifestyle management issues. She is also the author of Life Inside the “Thin” Cage: A Personal Look into the Hidden World of the Chronic Dieter. A former marketing director for Sparrow Records, a division of EMI Music, Constance was led to pursue this compilation by her appreciation for the work of contemporary musicians.
Life is not a resume. In Constance Rhodes book, The Art of Being, she drives home this point with the compilation of testimonials that depict finding the concept of being. The honesty of the fifteen Christian musician/writers is illustrated in their straight-forward life depictions in coming to terms with their search for and definition of being. The book provides a sense of peace. It stimulates inward reflection by the reader to determine whether or not he or she is measuring life by trophies on the wall or by the fulfillment that comes with discovering who he or she really is and being comfortable and content with that person.
With each chapter as a separate testimonial by a different author, The Art of Being is an easy read. A photo of each writer precedes his or her chapter, offering a personal connection from the start and fueling a guess from the reader as to what will follow. The individual writers offer believable life struggles, turmoil, anguish and then the acknowledgement of God during their journeys to discover the art of being. Rhodes, having worked in and left the music industry on her pursuit of being, has chosen to present the material through the eyes of artists in her field.
One of the most compelling messages comes from Tammy Trent, a Christian musician who, in dealing with the loss of her young husband, figures out that life is not all about her. It is about God. Another is offered by Gabriel Wilson, an eccentric Gen Xer who struggled to fit in and whose lofty dreams of being a Christian rock star were often questioned. He writes, If we can just stay true to what God made us to be, He will take care of the rest. The Art of Being touches and teaches the reader through fifteen plus of these real-life lessons.
Reading The Art of Being is like sitting around at the coffee shop with fifteen close friends: relaxed, conversational, and very personal. Stylistically, the book is very edgy with its graphics, font and photo choices. The testimonials are primarily from young to middle-aged artists and their illustrations and examples are taken from very modern icons. Though the messages are clear and could be beneficial to anyone who reads them, the book is a definite match for the creative-minded, Christian Gen-Xer who may be "seeking the art of being." The Art of Being is highly recommended for those who may be beginning on their own journey of self-discovery. -- Angela S. Hudson, Christian Book Previews.com