Keeping It Simple

Some of the topics I write about most often are supportive connections, gratitude and oneness. They are central elements in my life and my work. They are qualities, experiences, actions that I attempt to embody and I often feel as if I’ll forever be learning to understand them. This week’s recommendation has been one of my teachers.  

HelpThanksWowCoverPublished in 2012, Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers, by Anne Lamott was in my hands not long after it hit the shelves.

I first experienced Anne Lamott’s work when I read Bird by Bird many years ago. I immediately fell in love with her humor, her wisdom and her honesty.

Help, Thanks, Wow begins in her classic direct, straight-forward style. 

“I do not know much about God and prayer, but I have come to believe, over the past twenty-five years, that there’s something to be said about keeping prayer simple. 

Help. Thanks. Wow.”

Right off the bat she tackles the meaning of prayer – what it is and what it isn’t – and who or what we’re addressing when we pray. She honors the struggles inherent within those concepts and describes her own. Then she carries us past those struggles into the essential act of “trying to communicate with the Real, with Truth, with the Light.” 

In Help, Thanks, Wow, Lamott’s vivid language engages us deeply in the essential acts of asking for support, appreciating what we have and experiencing the wonder of life. Through example after example we are reminded of their importancKeeping e and inspired by their simplicity and wisdom.

Her writing speaks with a true, authentic voice. Help, Thanks, Wow is rich with detail and personal stories. There’s nothing vague in Anne Lamott’s writing. As I read her work I feel as if I’m sitting in a cafe with her, sharing stories, laughter and compassion, at once irreverent and sacred. From the loss of her beloved 13-year old cat to the vivid description of a hike in the northern foothills of Mount Tamalpais, we witness raw, precious, astounding human experience and through that witnessing, come home to our own.

This book is filled with moments of laughter, tears and the awesome and poignant beauty of life. I hope you enjoy it!

If you’ve already read it or decide to check it out, I’d love to hear what you think.


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