DO YOU think that we live today in a godless, godforsaken culture? If you do, then think again.
Reading this book will help you to see, as Donna Lazenby does, God at work in countless everyday situations, and how we connect with him without even realising what we are doing.
From the films that we love to the images we tattoo into our skin, to dating apps, billboards, graffiti, pounding a treadmill at the gym: God speaks to us through all these things — if our hearts are open to hear him.
Lazenby reflects on 34 experiences when God has spoken to her — not through the Bible or a sermon or in prayer — but through the culture around us. It is a culture that most of us would describe as secular. But, when we start to unpack it — as Lazenby does — we begin to see how intertwined it is with the divine.
The book merits reading slowly — over a period of months — perhaps one of the short chapters every other day. Give yourself time to mull over what Lazenby is sharing, and to allow the poetry of her writing to soak into you.
I have to admit that it did take me a while to adjust to Lazenby’s style. I found myself intrigued by what she seemed to be saying, but struggling — through the poetry — to understand fully her meaning. The trick, of course, is to slow down. This is not a book for speed reading.
In her combination of both poetry and prose, it is as though Lazenby is inviting us to share in her most intimate reflections. It shows a brave and generous vulnerability — which makes many of the reflections deeply affecting.
In summary, the book is prophetic. As Lazenby puts it herself, we need prophets who “can walk around in the culture, listen to it, look at it, help it to see what it worships and where it needs to reorient its vision, if it is to pursue its questions with any hope of finding answers”. So, read this book, be inspired, and discover your inner prophet.
The Revd Martine Oborne is Vicar of St Michael’s, Chiswick, in London.
Divine Sparks: Everyday encounters with God’s incoming kingdom
SPCK £9.99 (978-0-281-07494-5)
Church Times Bookshop £9