Page last updated: September 21, 2019

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by Tracy Balzer


A Word’s Worth Review: “Through accounts about personal experiences and forays into monasteries, discoveries in art, nature, and poetry, periods of listening and meditating, Tracy Balzer presents a convincing case for those in contemporary society who want to find God and a more peaceful life. . . .” DIANE M. MOORE


“Wonder, attention, journey, stillness―A Listening Life explores the very lineaments of the spiritual life. In reflecting on these themes, Balzer draws, of course, on Scripture, but also on wildlife, poetry, art, and the text of her own ordinary and extraordinary life as a minister, mother, wife, friend, and disciple of Jesus Christ. Her book cultivates wonder and attentivenessI found myself becoming calmer, more peaceful, and more prayerful as I read. I am so thankful for A Listening Life. Quite simply, it is a book that I need.”

LAUREN WINNER, Author of Girl Meets God and Mudhouse Sabbath

“Tracy Balzer has lived attentively to God and has found His glory in the wonder of whales and waterfalls. In this book she takes her readers to ‘thin places,’ enabling us to feel the holy awe that she discovered, and she offers great insights into the God who made them. After reading this book I can attest: The Listening Life is a life I want to live.”

JAMES BRYAN SMITH, Author of The Good and Beautiful series

“Tracy Balzer has written a spiritual and practical book about the reality of her own and others’ connection with the living God. I love both the sweetness and challenge of it. I recommend this book to all who seek to go deeper with God.”

JILL BRISCOE, Author of Spiritual Arts: Mastering the Disciplines for a Rich Spiritual Life and Heart Cry

“This is a true and hopeful book. Tracy Balzer not only discovers deeply enriching disciplines as she listens, she writes about them vividly, intimately, opening up to us her sensitive heart in a way that draws us towards the God she hears speaking. I love her self-revealing honesty and the stories that tell how she finds divine wisdom in her own life events and relationships.”

LUCI SHAW, Author of Breath for the Bones and Water My Soul and Writer in Residence, Regent College

“This wise book reminds us not only that we should listen to God in life and especially in Scripture, but it also shows us the various ways we can do that. Balzer gently coaxes the reader into a lifestyle of attentiveness to the holy all around us.”

MARK GALLI, Senior Managing Editor, Christianity Today

TRACY BALZER is the Director of Christian Formation at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas. She is the author of Thin Places: An Evangelical Journey into Celtic Christianity and has a particular affection for the British Isles, leading spiritual pilgrimages and study trips there frequently. She is also a certified spiritual director and is in process of becoming an oblate at nearby Subiaco Abbey. Tracy and her husband, Cary, have two daughters: Kelsey, married to Jordan Howard, and Langley.


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Written by Seth Burgett, Deric England, Jake Hook, Cori Hunt, and Makayla Schultz
John Brown University