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A Friendship Like No Other: Experiencing God's Amazing Embrace Paperback


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A Friendship Like No Other: Experiencing God's Amazing Embrace + Praying the Truth: Deepening Your Friendship with God through Honest Prayer + Finding God in All Things: A Companion to the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Loyola Press (March 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0829427023
  • ISBN-13: 978-0829427028
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 5.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,878 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Many Christians view God as a solitary, distant figure to be feared. In A Friendship Like No Other, renowned spiritual director William A. Barry, SJ, explores the premise that God wants to relate to us as a close friend. Barry has contemplated this idea—radical for many Christians—throughout his lifetime; he explains that it is actually an ancient heritage tracing back to the “developing revelation of God contained in the Bible.”
A Friendship Like No Other offers three well-supported and practical sections: prayerful exercises to help lead the reader to the conviction that God wants his or her friendship; a close look at objections to this idea; and reflections on experiencing the presence of God and discerning those experiences. Brief, personal meditations are woven throughout.
Grounded in biblical tradition but with a clear focus on Ignatian spirituality, this book offers a fresh approach to understanding one’s special relationship with God.
 

From the Back Cover

Live in the love of a God
who desires a relationship with you.
T hroughout A Friendship Like No Other, renowned spiritual director William A. Barry, SJ, explores the premise that God wants to relate to us as a close friend. Barry has contemplated this idea—radical for many Christians—throughout his lifetime, and he explains that it actually traces back to the “developing revelation of God contained in the Bible.”
A Friendship Like No Other offers three well-supported and practical sections: prayerful exercises to help lead you to the conviction that God wants your friendship; a close look at objections to this idea; and reflections on experiencing the presence of God and discerning those experiences. Brief, personal meditations are woven throughout.
Grounded in biblical tradition and with a clear focus on Ignatian spirituality, this book offers a fresh, heart-changing approach to living joyfully in the freedom of the divine embrace.
 


More About the Author

William A. Barry, SJ, is a veteran spiritual director who is currently serving as tertian director for the New England Province of the Society of Jesus. He has taught at the University of Michigan, the Weston Jesuit School of Theology, and Boston College. His many works include Letting God Come Close, A Friendship Like No Other, Here's My Heart, Here's My Hand, Seek My Face, and God's Passionate Desire (Loyola Press), and God and You.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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This book is easy to read and to understand.
Angel
The book shows how God is with us and wants to have a deep friendship with us and how we can go about nurturing this relationship in our daily lives.
fortgirl
Read this book and you will have a new friend, not at the beginning perhaps, but halfway through you'll want it to happen.
E. Paul Kelly

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 49 people found the following review helpful By James Martin on March 27, 2008
Format: Paperback
Many years ago, I read Father Barry's book "God and You," and it completely revolutionized the way that I pray. His essential insight was that prayer can profitably be compared to a personal relationship, and that the things required for a healthy relationship--time, patience, honest, etc.--are exactly what are needed for a heatlhy relationship with God in prayer. His new book is simply superb and will be of great use to anyone in the spiritual life--from those beginning to pray to those who have been praying for their whole lives. (Particularly useful for me were his discussions on what it means to have an "adult" relationship with God.) With his trademark clarity, insight and wisdom, Father Barry, one of our modern Christian spiritual masters, has written what is certainly one of the best books on prayer in recent memory.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By E. Paul Kelly on March 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is a radical idea and shows us how to make it happen. To many of us God is remote, buried in catechisms with answers dutifully to be memorized. Few of us would dare say, "God is my friend," whether casual, close or best. We have been educated by commands from on high to love God with all we've got and be grateful for God's love for us. Some of us smile at such lofty ideals and keep God off in the nice-sounding, spiritual world far from ours, where we live and move and have our daily being with our friends. That is, until we read William Barry on friendship. He writes in the way we speak to and with those friends we are so fortunate to have, without whom it would be really tough to live. I began this book with that smile, then found myself frowning at myself, and then nodding assent to having God as a friend. I thought of husbands who say, "I love my wife and she is my best friend." And the wives saying back, "I love my husband and he is my best friend." As if "love" and "friend" were incompatible. We hold back from saying or thinking, "I love God, and he is my best friend." Is "love" when used with "God" so different that "friend" is barred from "God"? William Barry thinks that God as friend is a kind of relationship we never actually thought about, might even be a radical idea. And so, he wrote this book out of personal experiences, his own and those who came to him for spiritual guidance. He shows us how God and we can be friends, even best friends. It's not only a new way of thinking about God, it's a new way of being ourselves. What's life without friends? And why should God be locked out? Read this book and you will have a new friend, not at the beginning perhaps, but halfway through you'll want it to happen. And at the end, you'll read that last paragraph and say "Yes, and thanks for the offer." It reads: "God wants friendship with you and with me and with all our brothers and sisters in the world. Let's take the offer, shall we? Bless you all."
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Maureen C. Saldarini on March 29, 2008
Format: Paperback
The author, William Barry, metaphorically extends his hand to the reader, and invites us to walk the path with him to experience the amazing gift of friendship with Jesus.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Brenda McLaughlin on September 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
Friendship with God seemed to be a lofty ideal until I read this book. Fr. Barry's work reveals an abiding friendship with God so true as to evoke, in the reader, Jesus' prayer to His father, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done." Infused with passages from Scripture and excerpts from gorgeous poetry throughout, Fr. Barry shares the insights and wisdom of his own deeply-lived faith. There is a sense of urgency about this book, as there is much to be done in the face of the many harsh realities of everyday life. Exercises sprinkled throughout the book invite the reader into companionship with God: that we all might become contemplatives in action. The invitation is hard to resist.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By B. Johnson on May 13, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is easy to get lost or confused when trying to love God or feel loved by God. Religions provide so many rules. Father Barry gives us a simple metaphor, a loving relationship. He asks us to consider how much we live as if God is out to punish us; he urges us toward a new understanding of God and Jesus. The path to a closer relationship with God is the same as the path to a closer relationship with another person. In thinking this way, I can come up with all kinds of ways of loving God more and feeling more loved by God. This book is also a modern interpretation of the Ignatius Spiritual Exercises. Almost all 21st century Christians will find Ignatius's 16th century exercises daunting and altogether politically incorrect. Barry's exercises blend imagination and scripture reading in a most Ignatian way. Although specifically Christian in some chapters, the book is written in an open way to invite anyone who believes in God to build a closer relationship with their higher power.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Ianiro on May 9, 2008
Format: Paperback
This was a helpful book, but I guess I expected it to be more "warm and fuzzy" in terms of developing a friendship with the Lord. The book was more theological, focusing on Bible passages, etc. I did find these scripture verses to be helpful, but the book has a much more serious tone than I was expecting. I am not against this kind of tone for a religious book, but for a book focusing on FRIENDSHIP, I did expect a little more warmth. I'm not disappointed in my purchase as there was much wonderful content in this book and it did help my friendship with the Lord grow. Just not as much as I was hoping.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By James Van Koolbergen on August 31, 2008
Format: Paperback
Fr. Barry has provided so many insights into ways to further friendship with God especially by asking the reader to pause, imagine, and reflect on a scriptural experience. His encouragement to "talk" with God about any situation is particularly helpful to this reader.
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