Refreshed (Book Review)

John Hindley’s ‘Refreshed’ is a super holiday devotional book to come back to each year.

Are you a holiday reader? I am.

And I’m not.

I am because one of the ways I love to relax on holiday is by devouring all kinds of books that I’ve not had time to read throughout the year. And, just back from a good break away from home, my family will confirm I often had my head in my book (or Kindle to be more precise; space is a problem!).

But also, I’m not. I don’t take Christian books away to read on the whole. It’s too much like work. I spend a lot of the year reading books for work, reviewing, recommending, commenting, and using, - adding Christian books to my holiday pile makes it very difficult for me to switch off.

There, I’ve admitted it and you can think what you like!

But of course, the challenge for someone like me is that I face the temptation to ditch anything Christian at all, and that will not do. How best to maintain a devotional life when on holiday?

Well, I now have the answer. This year I took away John Hindley’s Refreshed, a new book of short devotional chapters for your time away. 30 chapters on topics relevant to vacation: arriving, rest, skies, beach, hills, farmland, cities and so on.

Brilliant idea. Brilliantly executed. Thanks John. This little book did me a world of good.

First, it kept up my devotional life without feeling too much like a busman’s holiday. Simple thoughts. But profound. And though I sometimes balked at the family activities (I am in my mid-fifties after all), my heart was stirred and my holiday connected with my faith.

Second, it gave me an achievable routine. It’s a while since I’ve taken John Owen on holiday. And though that may be some young gun’s approach, I find that if I over-reach I nearly always under-deliver. Then getting back into devotional routine when I return is even harder work.

We have Advent books and Lent books. Neither season is particularly on my radar, but I can see the benefit. And how we have a Rest book. Rest is definitely on my radar and taking a break is firmly secured in the pages of scripture. So, I would even stick my neck out and say, make this a church book, and not just a personal one.

Me, I’m packing it away in my suitcase to be rediscovered next year. You?

If you’re still to go away, get yourself a copy. If you’ve been already, treat yourself to a holiday surprise you’ll discover when you next open your roll-along.

And look forward to being Refreshed.

You can order a copy of Refreshed from The Good Book Company for £7.64.

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