Sacred Rhythms
Sacred Rhythms
  • Length: 192 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.5 in
  • Published: March 22, 2022
  • Item Code: 4875
  • ISBN: 978-0-8308-4875-1

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Do you long for a deep, fundamental change in your life with God? Do you desire a greater intimacy with God? Do you wonder how you might truly live your life as God created you to live it?

Spiritual disciplines are activities that open us to God's transforming love and the changes that only God can bring about in our lives. Picking up on the monastic tradition of creating a "rule of life" that allows for regular space for the practice of spiritual disciplines, Ruth Haley Barton takes you more deeply into understanding seven key disciplines along with practical ideas for weaving them into everyday life. Each chapter includes exercises to help you begin the practices individually and in a group context. The final chapter puts it all together in a way that will help you arrange your life for spiritual transformation.

This spiritual formation classic is now available as part of the IVP Signature Collection, which features special editions of iconic and bestselling books in celebration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of IVP.

"If you desire more of God, if you thirst for a more authentic spiritual life, Sacred Rhythms is a reliable path and Ruth Haley Barton is a trusted and cherished guide. I have long admired Ruth and her work, and I am thrilled to see Sacred Rhythms released for a new generation."

Todd Hunter, Anglican bishop and author of Deep Peace: Finding Calm in a World of Conflict and Anxiety

"As a rule, books seldom become a classic during the author's lifetime. Ruth Haley Barton's book Sacred Rhythms is a deserving exception—full of beauty, depth and human realities that shape the soul. My own copy of Sacred Rhythms is dog-eared, notes scribbled in margins and pages covered with highlighters. Ruth sees the terrain of conversion as a daily experience of self-awareness and need for God. This experience begs the question, What do I do with what I see about myself? Ruth answers with spiritual rhythms that can transform us into our true Christ-in-me self. Sacred Rhythms invites you to lean in and become people who incarnate the presence of Jesus in families, communities, churches, societies, workplaces and the world."

Adele Ahlberg Calhoun, copastor of spiritual formation at Highrock Church in Arlington, Massachusetts, and author of Spiritual Disciplines Handbook

"The world desperately needs wholehearted leaders who live and lead from the soul. Sadly, far too many leaders have lost their souls while doing the work of saving souls. If we have learned anything from Ruth Haley Barton over the many years of shared friendship and ministry, it is this: dry and weary souls are in desperate need of sacred rhythms. This book is not only essential reading but an essential practice for any person committed to a thriving and transforming relationship with God. We have not only been blessed by Ruth's writing and teaching on sacred rhythms over the years, but we have also seen her live it. We pray that you will have the courage to put these sacred rhythms into practice in your life—your soul is worth it!"

Jarrett and Jeanne Stevens, founding lead pastors of Soul City Church, Chicago

"Sacred Rhythms is a book I always keep on hand with my Bible and journal. It's more of a tool and a guide in my pursuit to have intimacy with God. In this American culture we are consumed by busy rushing, endless planning, and if you're like me, a near inability to turn off my brain. This book has been a welcome respite and invitation to a practical way to slow down and hear the quiet, confident whisper of my Creator."

Ricky Staub, founder of Neighborhood Film Company

"Our natural tendency is to push, work longer and strive. In a kind, compelling and beautiful voice Ruth Haley Barton invites us to listen to an inner pulse that can be heard only when we are quiet. The path is one that Ruth has walked with honesty and integrity. The fruit of her labor is a sweet call to know our lives need not be harried or harbor fruitless exhaustion."

Dan B. Allender, The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology, author of The Wounded Heart

"Ruth Barton confirms what you've suspected—there is more to life than what most of us are living. This volume serves as a great primer for helping us get in touch with and follow our longings—all the way to God!"

Reggie McNeal, author of The Present Future and Kingdom Collaborators

"Too many people are suffering with CFS (Christian Fatigue Syndrome). Ruth Haley Barton is herself a CFS survivor, and she shares here—in a warm and personal yet lucid and thoughtful writing style—how she has been restored to life's sacred rhythms. My experience mirrors hers, and I will enthusiastically recommend this book widely—both as preventative medicine and as needed therapy."

Brian McLaren, speaker and author of A New Kind of Christian

"Ruth Haley Barton offers much wise, sane, concrete help for people who are ready for the 'more' of God amidst their busy lives, and want a better way to arrange their lives to receive God's transforming presence. She clearly spells out an excellent rhythm of classical spiritual practices that can keep us open and available to God's transforming actions in and among us. She grounds these practices in our own deepest desires, connecting those desires with God's desire for our well-being. . . . I think this book will be of enormous value to individuals and groups who are seeking to more fully ground all dimensions of their often fragmented and hectic daily lives in the liberating ground of God's transforming presence, with the help of a rhythm of vital spiritual practices that can keep us available to that loving presence."

Tilden Edwards, author of Sabbath Time and Living in the Presence

"[Barton] describes the practices with the gentle touch of an understanding and knowing mystic."

Publishers Weekly, January 29, 2006

Read an Excerpt



1. Longing for More: An Invitation to Spiritual Transformation
2. Solitude: Creating Space for God
3. Scripture: Encountering God Through Lectio Divina
4. Prayer: Deepening Our Intimacy with God
5. Honoring the Body: Flesh-and-Blood Spirituality
6. Self-Examination: Bringing My Whole Self Before God
7. Discernment: Recognizing and Responding to the Presence of God
8. Sabbath: Establishing Rhythms of Work and Rest
9. A Rule of Life: Cultivating Rhythms for Spiritual Transformation

A Note of Gratitude
Appendix A: Journeying Together
Appendix B: Leading a Group Experience
Appendix C: Choosing Spiritual Disciplines that Correspond to Our Needs


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Ruth Haley Barton

Ruth Haley Barton is founding president of the Transforming Center, a spiritual formation ministry to pastors and Christian leaders. A trained spiritual director, teacher, and retreat leader, she is the author of multiple books, including Invitation to Solitude and Silence, Sacred Rhythms, and Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership.