There is a hunger in the modern world for spirituality. One vast resource of spiritual wisdom, too often overlooked, comes out of the pre-Reformation church—from the martyrs of the first centuries of Christianity, through the long tradition of monasticism, to the medieval Christian mystics. Now, assembled and digested for daily intake, the spiritual insights of over seventy men and women of pre-Reformation Christianity resound through the pages of Charles Ringma’s new meditational reader, Hear the Ancient Wisdom. Ringma’s work reminds us that there are deep wells of Christian reflection to draw from in the work of early Christian writers such as John Chrysostom, Augustine, Benedict, Francis of Assisi, Bonaventure, Bernard of Clairvaux, Meister Eckhart, Hildegard of Bingen, and Julian of Norwich.
From these figures we can learn more about the practices of prayer and contemplation, the relevance of community, the challenge of asceticism, the love of God for God’s own sake, living the Gospel, the longing for union with God, the practices of justice, and much more. Hear the Ancient Wisdom is formatted to give you a meaningful thought for each day, equipping you to explore the wisdom of these brothers and sisters of the past on specific biblical topics throughout the year. And in the Logos Bible Software edition, you can further expand your study of these figures with just a few clicks. Quickly perform powerful topical and word based searches across this text and your entire library, and compare Scripture translations for the references given each day. The amazing functionality of Logos Bible Software will allow you to delve deeper into this treasury of wisdom as you are guided by Charles Ringma’s warmth and insight.
In Hear the Ancient Wisdom these early voices are not antiquated echoes; instead, their voices resonate through the centuries. Empowered by this great cloud of witnesses that surround us through history, Charles takes us on a discipleship journey that is both beautiful and deeply challenging.
—Justin Duckworth, Anglican bishop of Wellington
Charles Ringma has crafted a unique genre of inspirational literature. . . . Many of these meditations are riveting—stopping us in our tracks and pointing us to God and life. Far from being otherworldly and cloistered, Ringma takes us deeper into this life and, at the same time, the life to come. Walking with these godly men and women then and today . . . is a rich and not-to-be missed experience.
—R. Paul Stevens, Professor Emeritus, Regent College
Hear the Ancient Wisdom is a book worthy of our time, commitment, and investment, as you will (like me) be sustained and nourished by the astonishing breadth of understanding and depth of spiritual insight contained in these meditations and reflections. Here is lived wisdom given a voice for the twenty-first century, enabling us to find a way to engage with the paradox and complexities of real life as it is today. Highly recommended!
—Reverend Trevor Miller, abbot, Northumbria Community
Students and colleagues of Charles Ringma . . . know him to be a trustworthy guide in matters of the Spirit. In this book, as in his life, he unites a rich, intellectual grasp of the broad tradition of Christian spirituality with a rigorous ethic of service, leading the reader beyond the rhetoric of faith into a life of worship and service. This is a book I will gladly make my companion for a year—or more.
—Maxine Hancock, professor emerita, Regent College
Charles Ringma is professor emeritus of missions and evangelism at Regent College, Vancouver. He also served as professor of theology and mission at the Asian Theological Seminary in Manila, Phillippines. He has studied extensively in the fields of theology, sociology, and religion, earning his PhD from the University of Queensland. Originally from Australia, he was also active in mission work among Aborigine peoples, the founder and director of the Good News Centre, which works with alcoholics in Brisbane, as well as the Australian founder and executive director of Teen Challenge in Brisbane. He also planted a church, Jubilee Fellowship, in Australia. His recently published works include Ragged Edges: Poems from the Margins and The Seeking Heart: A Journey with Henri Nouwen. Other works include Gadamer’s Dialogical Hermeneutic, Cry Freedom: with Voices from the Third World, Seek the Silences with Thomas Merton, Wash the Feet of the World with Mother Teresa, and Whispers from the Edge of Eternity.