Fierce Convictions: Hannah More

Do you like history? What about education? The abolition of slavery? Poetry?

If all these tickle your fancy, Hannah More is the gal for you.

I am currently doing a special course for my honours degree in which I was able to choose the subject matter. One of the people I am studying in the course is Hannah More. I am reading her works through the eyes of a philosopher and investigating whether or not she exercised philosophical tactics in her work. Although I am no historian, Hannah More lived an inspiring life. Coming from middle class social status, she effortlessly traversed between the upper and lower classes bringing about social and spiritual reform. Some of her most notable achievements were her ideas on education (although slightly sexist in the eyes of modern society), her contribution to ending slavery, her work in animal rights, and her beautiful poetry.

After reading more about her, I am really inspired to conduct myself as intellectually and classy as she did. She maintained a high moral standard yet always had even wit and wonderful words to create real change in the world.

If Hannah More sounds like an interesting woman to learn more about, I would suggest reading Karen Swallow Prior’s Fierce Convictions. It is a relatively short read that is informative and interesting. It is not your typical biography, but one that reads quickly like a novel. Definitely an A+ read for me!

Happy Reading!

Katie

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Fierce Convictions by Karen Swallow Prior
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Walking the Walk: Part 1

A few weeks ago I did a series called “Mind and Body”. This series was about taking care of your mental and physical health so that you are able to function well, and serve God and others to the best of your ability. I understand that not all of you reading are Christians, but feel free to read these posts anyway. If at the very least, those posts centred around having a healthy body and mind which everyone should strive to have. This new series, “Walking the Walk”, is about living a healthy spiritual life. Again, I understand that some of you do not believe in God and may think that Christians are hypocrites. I’m not going to give an argument for or against either of these ideas right now, but please do keep reading if you want. Even if you do not believe, the posts in this series could give you some insight into what I strive to do to have a healthy spiritual life or in other words, a healthy relationship with God. I also believe that the concepts discussed in this series are an important part of every Christian’s life. This does not mean that everyone does these things or doesn’t mess up once in awhile. I am not professing to be perfect and I mess up a lot. However, over the next few weeks I am hoping to share what I think “Walking the walk” looks like for Christians from a biblical perspective.

Have an awesome weekend!

Katie

How do you walk your walk? 

The Mind and Body: Part 1

Today I was so tired and grumpy. Who hasn’t had those days? These days are the ones where we don’t feel like doing anything, talking to people, or going outside; a cozy blanket and a good read sounds like the best course of action on these days…

And then reality kicks in.

In real life, we can’t always pause life and crawl into our cocoons of comfort. However, as I sat reflecting on the day, I realized that there were little events that made it better. These events made my tiredness and grumpy attitude a little better and easier to manage. Before I knew it, I had come up with other ways to help how I was feeling. Since so many of us have days like these I thought I would share my tips and tricks with you. I am no expert, but these methods have certainly improved my standard of living.
The mind and body (and soul) are all important factors of human existence. It is important for us to take care of these parts of ourselves. I’ve found that if we ignore one of these areas, we become unhappy, tired, or even sick. All three parts, mind, body and soul, are connected and effect the other parts, which is why it is important to not ignore them.

With all this being said, I am a firm believer that having spiritual life is an important part of taking care of your entire being (especially your soul). Our spiritual lives are the most important parts of us as its condition determines our eternal destination. However, I didn’t want to talk about what a healthy spiritual life might look like just yet. God goes first in all things, but I want to share something that I think is not shared enough. Without replacing the importance of having a spiritual life, I wonder if sometimes we must begin to deal with our mental and physical problems before we can properly begin living spiritually. What I mean by this is that sometimes our other problems overwhelm us to the point that we cannot deal with our spiritual lives until we begin to manage what is overwhelming us. Sometimes problems we are facing in other areas of our life act as road blocks in our spiritual journey. I am not saying that we should have everything figured out and dealt with before we start working on our spiritual lives, just a start in other areas yet to be fully resolved. Again, we don’t need everything figured out to go to God and in fact, we never will have everything figured out. My point is that sometimes we have a mental or physical issue that blocks us from going any further in our spiritual walk until we address it. To address the issue, we may pray to God as say “I have this problem, please help me heal” or we may begin to address the issue by stating to ourselves, “I have this problem. I don’t like it.”

For example, I could never seem to get the hang of reading my Bible. I began to resent doing my daily reading because I had so much trouble getting it done and other things on my mind. I realized one day that I did not have a good schedule set in my life so I decided to start one. Once I began to establish times for waking and sleeping, doing errands, and such, it was unbelievable. It was so easy to pick up my Bible and read each day AND I felt a million times better physically, mentally, and spiritually. Another example might be someone suffering from depression. They may be told that God is there for them or that these feelings may pass, but might not ever be able to take a step further on that spiritual journey until they say, “I do not feel happy, but I want to be so I am going to get help to change that.” To make a long story short, this is why I wanted to write about the mind and body first. As disciples of Christ, we are called to share our faith and be loving towards everyone. I don’t see how this is possible if we can’t take care of ourselves (with God’s help of course). Over the next few days I am going to post some of my methods for you all to read. For today, I just wanted to introduce my idea and encourage you to think if there is an area that you might be ignoring or might not be taking the best care of. Maybe we can all set one goal for something we want to positively change in our lives to help us lead healthy mental, physical, or spiritual lives.

– Katie