Henri Nouwen was a professor who taught at Harvard University and Yale University before becoming the senior pastor at the L’Arche community called Daybreak in Toronto, Canada, a post he held until his death in 1996. L’Arche is a community of people with disabilities living together. Nouwen was a prolific writer and wrote numerous books on spirituality and daily living. Bread for the Journey is an important book that gives new hope and inspiration for how to live.
Nouwen first began this book with the intention of writing a devotional work that touched on matters relating to all people of faith. However, the more he wrote, the more he realized that he had to deal with Jesus, the center of his life. This devotional book is therefore Christo-centric; its ideas and images center on Christ as savior, teacher, creator, and peace giver. The book is organized as a calendar: Nouwen provides one short inspirational thought for each day of the year. He covers many important issues to help his readers live authentically, holistically, and in a deeper relationship with the divine. Nouwen tries to open his readers’ hearts and minds so that they can focus more intently on God’s presence in and purpose for their lives. According to Nouwen, developing a relationship with God is a lifelong journey; this book is intended as spiritual bread for that journey.
Touching on topics both joyous and sad, Nouwen describes human experiences: loneliness,...
(The entire section is 550 words.)