The Road of Blessing

January 13, 2011 | My Jottings

It has been a while since I’ve had a bloggy giveaway, and I think it’s time. I love to share good books, and this month I’ll be giving away Penelope Wilcock’s The Road of Blessing.

I became familiar with Penelope’s books years ago when a friend told me about The Hawk and the Dove. I was completely bowled over by that book (it used to be a three-book trilogy and has now been reprinted in its entirety as a three-part book in one volume) and continue to buy copies of it to give as gifts. Then I read a few other books by Pen, and one in particular reached deep into my heart and grabbed it in a way I hope to never forget. If you haven’t read In Celebration of Simplicity, I highly recommend it to you.

I gathered up the courage to write to Pen after reading her book on gospel simplicity, and she graciously wrote back to me. Which I would expect any author who appreciates readers to do. 🙂  Then I wrote to her again and she wrote to me again. We exchanged photographs of our families, learned a little about each others’ histories, and sent each other a couple of things in the mail. She sent me flowers. I sent her socks. Hmmm. Those last two statements reveal a lot don’t they? I’m not sure what, but I’m sure they’re fraught with profound meaning of some sort.

Anyway, one day I emailed Pen (she lives in England with her family) and gave her permission to stop writing back to me — I didn’t want her to think she was obligated to keep in touch with one of her many swooning fans just to be polite. She did not stop writing, much to my happiness, and I consider her one of the dearest friends I’ve never met.  🙂

I was privileged to read her most recent publication The Road of Blessing, a few months ago in manuscript form, and was marvelously blessed and instructed by her words and insights. Pen was kind enough to send me a signed copy recently, and I’m reading it and savoring it a second time now, letting its soothing truths and invitations to God’s peace wash over me.

Yesterday another copy I ordered arrived in the mail from amazon and I would like to share it with one of you!

Also, Pen has offered to send a sticky label with a handwritten message and her signature to the person who wins the book! That way you can put the label in the book and have your own signed and personalized copy. Yay!

To enter this little giveaway, please leave a comment and answer this question:

“What is one thing you would like to do to soothe and simplify your life?”

The winner will be chosen from all people who leave comments, and will be announced on Monday, January 17th.

Here are a few comments by people who have reviewed and recommended The Road of Blessing:

“Pen’s love for God shines through every word. She writes as a fellow traveller. Her words are deeply rooted in truth, watered with compassion and fed with hope. This is a must-have book.” — Malcolm Duncan

“Penelope Wilcock speaks serenity and wisdom into our turbulent lives and troubled times. We need people like her.” — Ruth Valerio

I couldn’t agree more. Pen has spoken serenity and wisdom into my own intermittently turbulent life, sometimes with humor, always with kindness, humility and care. (She has more than once told me that while I’m swinging overhead on vines going from tree to tree, she’s settled comfortably down on the ground below, watching and waving at me. Her depiction has been too close to the truth at times.)

It seems like everyone is looking for a little respite these days. I have slowly pared down my own life to include only what I’m certain is most important and there is yet more to do, as God helps and guides us. If you’re at a place in your life where you can’t get away to a quiet vacation spot but could use some serious refreshment right where you are, you will love this book.

I’m so happy to share about Pen, and I can’t wait to give her newest book away to a very blessed person.

Looking forward to your comments,


  1. Kay says:


    You know I loved “The Hawk and the Dove”. I read it a few years back on your recommendation, and have recommended it to others whenever given the chance. It is one of the few books I have kept in my personal library as I tend to pass on books I don’t think I will ever re-read.

    In answer to your question…
    The one thing I am currently practicing that truly has soothed and simplified my life experience is this:

    Where ever I am, I am fully there.

    I am learning to be present. My nature causes me to tend to be constantly looking ahead to the next thing and consequently, I miss out on what is there for me in the here and now.

    that’s it.

    p.s. Wow! You know Penelope Wilcock?!!!

  2. Just Julie says:

    That is a discipline and a gift, to yourself and others, Kay. To speak with someone who is fully present is rare and valuable…they listen with attention and care. You do that so well. If you friend Pen on Facebook, you will get to know her too! She’s a blessing…

  3. Kay in UK says:

    I would sooo like to move out of the busy town where I live and see trees, grass and wildlife instead of concrete and cars.

  4. Just Julie says:

    Being where there are a lot of trees is a natural God-given calming agent, isn’t it Kay? I hope you are able to move just as you desire. Welcome here – thank you for your comment and visit!

  5. Ember says:

    Hey, Kay – PLANT a tree! become a guerilla tree-planter :0D

  6. Tauni says:

    I already live in a resort area and walking around my beloved Balboa Island does much to calm and sooth. I would like to learn to live without all the stuff!! Circumstances are so that I have the opportunity to do this. It feels so good to not be so tied to “things”. Now, if I could just get my husband to realize it!! 🙂 I am putting Pen’s books on my reading list and will look for them at the library! Love you!

  7. Just Julie says:

    Balboa Island must seem wonderful after Enid, Oklahoma, Tauni! I send my love to you and Curt.

  8. Ginny the Yalker..."One Who Can Yarn Talk" says:

    Jewel, I believe one of the dearest things, that has happened in my Walk with the Lord, is when I knew EXACTLY what I was to be doing for the Kingdom. Circumstances had cleared the table right down to the wood and FINALLY I let HIM lay out His Plan and I listened. I have been tempted to add a few things here and there to avoid disappointing people, but I will feel that tap on the shoulder, reminding me that it isn’t part of the Plan. The thing dear to my heart is that what He has given me to do is such a joy that sometimes I feel I should be doing more because it doesn’t feel like work! That’s dumb…. : )

  9. Just Julie says:

    That isn’t dumb…it’s beautiful. I envy you Ginny! 🙂 LY.

  10. sue raimo says:

    I will check out this author. I think she speaks my language. One of the things I would like to do to sooth and simplify my life is to find a natural rhythm to my days, weeks, months and years. I would like structure without rigidity, sacred activity interspersed with sacred rest ( and the ability to see all of life as sacred).

  11. Just Julie says:

    I love what you wrote Sue….I desire those same things. Blessings….

  12. Lloyd says:

    Got an idea,Julie. How about I buy a copy to share? I will read it and pass it on to someone on your list, etc. Those who wish can buy a personal copy. Simplify and prioritize; my marching orders, aided by my diamond willow. Blessings!

  13. Just Julie says:

    What a fantastic idea Lloyd! Penelope will be blessed, as will all who get a chance to read it. Thank you!

  14. Amy says:

    Wow, what an amazing question! I have been noodling this over for days and have decided on my response. To truly soothe and simplify my life, I am learning to stand up and say no.

    I have a wonderful and horrible habit of wanting to please everyone. Wonderful in that it brings joy to everyone and helps them in their lives but horrible in that there are times when I feel stretched too thin. If I learn to say no sometimes, I can fully give of myself when I do say yes – and not be too thin for the most important thing, my family.

  15. Just Julie says:

    Welcome and thank you for commenting, Amy! I think what you have written would probably apply to many, many women. I think you already have found the wisdom in your decision – “if I learn to say no sometimes, I can fully give of myself when I do say yes” – that is brilliant insight. I’ll bet others appreciate your words too. Blessings!

  16. Christy says:

    Too late to enter…..but will comment anyway. Too soothe and simplify my life, I am GOING TO claim every promise in the word of God and know that they are given to me, Christy)and live believing them.

  17. Just Julie says:

    Not too late to enter Christy! Amen to what you shared! LY.

  18. Jessica says:

    I’m just catching up on my blog reading after being gone for a week and I’m excited to check out this author!!!! Thank you for sharing her with all of us!!!

    And at the end of this past summer I let go of almost all of my responsibilities as far as committees and boards and things like that and I am still feeling SO MUCH RELIEF to be able to focus more on my family, my self and not be sitting in meetings when I should be on the couch reading books to my boys!!!

    I have never appreciated simplifying things as much as I do right now.

  19. Just Julie says:

    I’m so happy for you, Jessica. It sounds like your choice was perfect for your family. 🙂

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