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“The Conversation” — an excerpt from my forthcoming book, The Hidden Beauty of Everyday Life

After the long, difficult challenge of writing Chief Joseph and the Flight of the Nez Perce, I wanted to do something that stretched the imagination in a different way. So when my other publisher approached me with a proposition to write a smaller, more homiletic book as a companion work to Simple Truths and Small Graces, I jumped at the opportunity.

The result is The Hidden Beauty of Everyday Life. It appeals to a different audience than did Chief Joseph, but those of you who are devotees of my Native American-oriented work will see that I am slowly bringing my readership together under a quietly-crafted theology of seeking the spiritual presence in every object and event.

This is the core teaching that I have taken from my work with Native American spirituality, and Hidden Beauty is my most overt attempt to translate this belief into the situations of our contemporary life.

I’ll probably say more about Hidden Beauty as it comes closer to publication (sometime in May, I believe). But I’ll tell you that it has a more complex emotional texture than either Simple Truths or Small Graces. It looks a bit more closely at some of the darker realities that enter all of our lives, but tries to shine a light of hope and understanding onto them. At the same time, it speaks of the ordinary kindnesses and gifts that we too often take for granted.

In these small books I tell people I always try to move gently over deep waters. In Hidden Beauty, I think the depth is a little more evident. I hope you readers agree.

Here is one of the chapters, entitled, “The Conversation.”

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