An Ocean of Grace: A Journey to Easter with Great Voices from the Past – Tim Chester

An Ocean of Grace Tim Chester
An Ocean of Grace by Tim Chester
Also by this author: Do Miracles Happen Today?
Published by Good Book Company on January 1, 2021
Genres: Non-Fiction, Christian Life, Devotional, Theology
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four-stars

Reflect on Jesus in the run-up to Easter with this collection of daily devotions and prayers by great Christian writers from church history.

A collection of daily devotions and prayers by great Christian writers from throughout church history, including Augustine, Charles Spurgeon, John Bunyan, Catherine Parr, and Martin Luther.

Their time-tested words continue to paint a compelling portrait of Christ’s death and resurrection, and will encourage and inspire readers as much today as they did when they were first written.

Each daily reading has been selected, edited and introduced by Tim Chester to make these treasures accessible to every reader. They will help you reflect on Jesus in the run-up to Easter. Ideal to start at the beginning of Lent.

In An Ocean of Grace, author Tim Chester shares historic Christians’ prayers, poems, and other reflections. He designed this book as a devotional that leads up to Easter, and each day’s reading begins with a Bible verse, followed by a paragraph or two to provide context or set the tone. After this comes a selected writing from centuries past. Chester mentions in the introduction that he changed the wording occasionally to adapt archaic phrases for the modern reader, but these changes are not noticeable and do not alter the meaning of the work. Chester only altered the text to remove stumbling blocks to understanding, and the poems, prayers, and excerpts from prose writings all retain the authors’ original voices and old-fashioned writing styles.

This book is similar to The Valley of Vision, and I would recommend this to fans of that work and readers who are interested in historic Christian writings. I read this book over a brief period of time so that I could review it, but in the future, I would use it again for its intended purpose, going through it more slowly to soak up each day’s content and message. However, I would definitely encourage readers to not limit this book’s use to Easter. Even though Chester designed it for the season of Lent, this collection of daily readings can encourage and help a Christian at any time for the year, and a focus on Christ’s sacrifice is always relevant.

An Ocean of Grace: A Journey to Easter with Great Voices from the Past is a great devotional for readers who enjoy historic writings from Christian saints. It is also a good introduction to older writings for someone who is less familiar with them, since this collection eases up on archaic wording and includes context and explanation for the messages and main themes. My only critique is that this book could have benefited from a wider diversity of voices. The collection includes a few female writers, but mostly focuses on familiar church fathers and famous names like Luther and Spurgeon. I think it would have been ideal if Chester had included additional reflections from more broadly varied backgrounds, but this book is great for what it is, and I would recommend it.

four-stars