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Ever Present​

Author Austen Hardwick
Publisher Authentic £9.99
Format pbk
ISBN 9781788931588

Subtitled ‘Running to survive, thrive and believe’, this is part autobiography, part spiritual guide. The author managed to survive three strokes in his forties, which encouraged him to think much more deeply about life and faith. For him, running became a discipline that helped him to re-shape his life and enabled him to think as well as improve his physical fitness. Austen began to consider his own fragility as a human being. One key phrase stood out for me: ‘I hope I don’t miss God when he arrives, life feels too short.’ There is a metaphor about the race of faith, which is fully explored, with reference to many biblical teachings and some of the great Christian thinkers. For me, the book does not quite work as an end-to-end read, but is far better to read a chapter at a time and ponder the questions that it raises. As the vicar of the Belfry Church in York puts it, the book ‘describes with vulnerability some of the joys and frustrations of following Christ in the race of life.’

Reviewed by CAVAN WOOD

Biography, Spirituality