40 Days of Decrease: A Different Kind of Hunger. A Different Kind of Fast
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40 Days of Decrease: A Different Kind of Hunger. A Different Kind of Fast

Thomas Nelson / 2016 / Paperback

In Stock
Stock No: WW076603


Product Description

"What are you giving up for Lent?" Rather than chocolate or social media, what would happen if we abstained from something closer to our hearts---such as gossip or accumulation? Each of Chole's daily devotions includes a meditation, reflection question, a fast intended to inspire a tangible response, thought-provoking quote, and historical sidebar. 208 pages, softcover from Nelson.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 208
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2016
Dimensions: 8.40 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0718076605
ISBN-13: 9780718076603

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Publisher's Description

What if you fasted regret?

What if your friends fasted comparison?

What if your generation fasted escapism?

What if your community fasted spectatorship?

Such heart-fasts could trigger a spiritual revolution!

Via readings, refection questions, daily fasts, ancient quotes, and more, this is the dream of 40 Days of Decrease: A Different Kind of Hunger. A Different Kind of Fast.

Every day offers a meaningful consideration of Jesus’ journey and then invites readers into a daily fast of heart-clutter, the stuff that sticks to our souls and weighs us down. 

You can begin your forty-day journey any time of the year, but you may find it especially meaningful as a Lenten preparation to live in awe of Jesus’ resurrection. 

Each daily, 1000-word entry will include

  • a devotional based on Jesus’ cross-ward life;
  • a reflection question to guide journaling or group discussion;
  • a heart fast to inspire a tangible response;
  • a thought-provoking Lenten quote;
  • an optional sidebar into the historical development of Lent.
  • a suggested reading that takes you from John 12 to John 21
  • journaling space for reflection

In the same way self cannot satisfy self no matter how long it feasts, self cannot starve self no matter how long it fasts. Decrease—like increase—is only holy when its destination is love. 

We thin our lives to thicken our communion with God.

Dare to live awed by Christ’s resurrection!

Intuitive, prophetic, and profoundly inspiring, calling forth a revolution of soul health, stirring our passion to know Jesus more."

—DARLENE ZSCHECH, Composer, Worship Leader, Pastor, and Speaker

"God has sounded a clear chor d of revelation through Alicia Chole. God uses her to lovingly guide the reader into recognizing His presence, purpose, and power in times of necessary loss."

—DR. CLAUDE R. ALEXANDER, JR., Lead Pastor of The Park Baptist Church, Charlotte, NC

 

 

Author Bio

In person and in print, Dr. Alicia Britt Chole’s words perform grace-filled surgeries. Her voice is soothing and her messages are piercing. She has often been compared to a sword wrapped in velvet.

An intriguing wordsmith, skillful mentor, and award-winning writer, Alicia speaks internationally and has authored several books including Anonymous: Jesus’ Hidden Years and Yours and 40 Days of Decrease: A Different Kind of Hunger. A Different Kind of Fast. Men and women, learners and leaders, across ethnically diverse groups agree: In a culture obsessed with all-things-new, Alicia brings ancient truth to life.

Alicia holds a DMin in leadership and spiritual formation from George Fox Seminary and serves as the founding director of Leadership Investment Intensives (www.leadershipii.com), a nonprofit devoted to providing customized soul-care for leaders in business and ministry.

Alicia lives in the Ozarks of Missouri with her husband, Dr. Barry Jay Chole, their three amazing children (all Choles through the miracle of adoption), two somewhat-less-than-amazing dogs, four truly strange cats, one curiously social guinea pig, and four confused chickens.

Among her favorite things are thunderstorms, jalapenos, wild woods, honest questions, and pianos in empty rooms. To connect with Alicia, visit www.aliciabrittchole.com and @aliciachole.

 

Product Reviews

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  1. Amy VG
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    couldn't use this
    March 17, 2017
    Amy VG
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    Alicia Britt Chole is a great writer. I enjoyed reading her book just for her vibrant, direct writing style. However, even with her amazing writing, I just couldn't get into this book. I couldn't identify with her daily intros, which were tiny snippets of Jesus' ministry from her perspective. These snippets would then connect to the daily "fast". I found the "fasts" not to be of great benefit. Fasting "collecting praise", a meal, "rationalism", "avoidance", "tidy faith" all seem like good things to fast from. But we should be doing all these things already, and so, the suggestions just seemed a bit "light". Like a self-help book. Really the point to fasting is to seek God and focus on Him. I didn't get the sense that the fasts in this book were doing that. I also didn't understand the point to the daily history lessons on Lent practices. There were daily quotes from various Christian authors, I also didn't enjoy these, as some I didn't understand, others I didn't see the connection to the chapter. I don't know what to say...I guess I am unimpressed with this book. I think there are better lent books out there. Or even better: pick a book from the Bible and read a chapter a day and pray about it. That is fasting right there: making time for God and sticking to reading His Word daily.
  2. CDecker
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Fasting not food, but the things that hinder our walk with Christ
    April 4, 2016
    CDecker
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    I was immediately drawn to the subtitles invitation: A different kind of hunger. A different kind of fast. As a Pentecostal Christian, Lent has not been a practice of mine but, I have fasted and I knew fasting included the hunger pains of giving up food. So how could this fast bring a different hunger? What I found, was this book was not about giving up food, it was about giving up the hindrances Ive collected along the way and replacing them with a hunger to become more like Christ as I devotionally followed Jesus to the cross.

    Alicia grabbed me in her prologue and kept my attention fixed on the cross for 40 days. Woven in the story of Jesuss sacrifice was an invitation to embrace my own sacrifice of reduction. Alicia led me to examine my life for signs of approval, control, appearances, stinginess, self-confidence, luxury, or never having enough. And abandon it, surrender it, all for a deeper intimacy with God. For 40 days she reminded me how God seems more interested in what we are becoming than in what we are giving up. This fasting, was about decreasing the clutter of my heart to make more room for Jesus. One reading of 40 Days of Decrease is not enough, my Easter preparation will now include an annual reading of this powerful book. I cannot recommend it highly enough, there is no need to wait for Lent, read it today.

    I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers and Thomas Nelson Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255.
  3. Sufficient in Jesus
    Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Accesible and enriching.
    January 28, 2016
    Sufficient in Jesus
    Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    What if Lent wasn't meant to be just a period of duty-bound deprivation? What if it could be a season of preparation, where a time of renunciation helps set our soul right and readies it for Resurrection fullness?

    It is Alicia's conviction that we need to recover this second view of Lent, and that if we did, it would become a meaningful part of the cycle of faith.

    Lent: waiting, watching, wondering, making space inside to holding the hard things and the sacred sadness. And then, we awaken to Easter-day fullness, where death gives way to life everlasting and everything is rewritten in light of an empty tomb.

    Alicia's heart is captivated by this mystery, and her writing spills over with awe. This is definitely an accessible and enriching read.

    Many of her forty chosen "fasts" resonated strongly with me.

    For example, one day she suggests we fast from trying to find quick-fixes. Some things do not reach resolution in a hurry, some aspects of life never tie up in a bow, some things have no fix at all- they simply have to be lived with.

    Another day we fast from noise, intentionally choosing silence for a while. The list goes on, of course- we fast intimidation by standing against fear. We fast apathy- the world's pain is overwhelming, and we grow numb to survive it all, but we need to somehow keep our swift compassion for others.

    Basically, all these "fasts" are chances to correct an unhealthy way of dealing with yourself, to refocus your relationships with others, or to catch a new glimpse of your God.

    As Alicia says, Lent "frees me from the sticky stuff of self-consciousness, increases within me the sacred stuff of God-consciousness" and therefore "fills me with unspeakable joy."

    Yep. I think a Resurrection should involve unspeakable joy.

    I thank Thomas Nelson for providing me with a review copy in exchange for my opinion.
  4. Alison
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Holy weakness & following Jesus through the desert to a healthier soul.
    January 28, 2016
    Alison
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    40 Days of Decrease is an unusual, much needed look at Lent and decrease. The authors heart to be like Jesus is woven throughout every page of the book: Jesus lived a truly uncluttered life and died a focused, eternally fruitful death. How I long to follow His example. Instead of the typical fare of giving up food or social media, Alicia Britt Chole challenges the reader to give up other things instead, one for every day of Lent. Fasting includes giving up stinginess, avoidance,spectatorship, tidy faith, isolation and formulas to unclutter our souls. On Day Eighteen we are called to fast appearances. These words cut me to my core, Our reality does not frustrate Jesus. Our hypocrisy does. (88)

    As I let these words sink in, I realize this is why I hate the mess of learning and starting a conversation without knowing where it will go. My reality frustrates me. I prefer the illusion that Im someone who is put together. I prefer the appearance that I have a plan and know how to work through difficult things. I prefer looking like someone who can communicate clearly, instead of bumbling over my words while I try to figure out why Im crying.

    But the truth is that Jesus doesnt mind the mess, just like I don't mind baking with my one-year-old. He doesn't mind the flour on my forehead. Jesus isnt upset with me when I get batter around my mouth and need to be wiped up. He doesnt mind the process or my tears as Im working through things. He offers so much grace for the process. He knows Im not finished and plans to stick around until completion. (Phil 1:6)

    I love these words from Day Twenty One, the call to fast premature resolution:

    Process can be a troublesome thing. It disrupts us and disorients us and we would much rather skip to the end. But to live true, we must allow process to run its course. Question it, weep through it, agonize over it...but, for the sake of our souls, we dare not truncate process because time alone makes its work soul-deep.

    Today, fast premature resolution. Resist tidying up when you are in the muddy middle of the process of obedience-in-the-making. Befriend undone. Name the trouble. Like Jesus, talk to yourself and Your Father God. Ask Him if alternative routes exist again and again and again...until you push through resistance, pass around resentment, press past resignation, and emerge into willful (even if tearful) partnership with God. (106)

    Today Im thanking Jesus for not knowing whats wrong without talking about it. It frustrates me to death and my eyes tend to ache all day from what it costs me to enter into the mess. But Im thankful. I have a pretty good guess that Id be a better pretender if I knew what my problems were without the mess of the process. But I think of what Eugene Peterson says, Christian spirituality is not a life project for becoming a better person. It isnt supposed to be neat and tidy. It isnt as simple as making a plan and executing. It is messy and a process and we are learning.

    *I highly recommend 40 Days of Decrease. I was already a fan of Alicia Britt Chole after reading her beautiful book Anonymous (you can read my review here, if youre interested.) She writes about being invited into holy weakness with the Lord through some personal hardship and invites the reader to join her in following Jesus through the desert. Ill admit that Lent has never been part of my church tradition. I didnt grow up practicing Lent. But her book especially, has shed light on the spiritual importance of decrease; and not merely decrease for decreases sake. Decrease, when the destination is love, will purify our souls. There is a reading and reflection for each day, which I found both helpful and insightful. 40 Days of Decrease seeks to reintroduce Lent as a wise mentor that encourages us to reframe unanswered questions, darker seasons, and spiritual disillusionment as the shedding of earthly illusions and the gaining of Gods reality. (introduction, xviii) 5/5 for me.

    Book Look Bloggers and Thomas Nelson Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of 40 Days of Decrease, in exchange for my honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255
  5. Smith4Family
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    This will start a spiritual revolution!
    January 25, 2016
    Smith4Family
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    Wow! Do yourself a favor and take this 40-day journey. There is so much healing, hope, and Jesus in these pages...enough to start a spiritual revolution in your life, in your family, your community, your world.
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