Review: I Run to the Hills, by C. Maggie Woychik

I Run to the Hills, by C. Maggie Woychik

I Run to the Hills: Reflections on the Christian Journey by C. Maggie Woychik (Port Yonder Press, 2009)

Committing one’s life to Jesus Christ is an act of faith – and the first step of a journey. I Run to the Hills: Reflections on the Christian Journey is a series of brief, interconnected readings that illustrate the deepening of this spiritual relationship from gratitude and obedience into love.

The mountain-journey theme and its allegorical feel evoke memories of Hannah Hurnard’s Hinds’ Feet on High Places and John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, although the language is clear and contemporary.

There’s something about presenting the message this way that lets it penetrate better than if it came via a direct essay or sermon. Jesus used story too – it sneaks past the hearers’ mental filters better than a frontal approach.

In typical journey fashion, and as every Christ-follower knows, the pilgrim travels and reflects, learns and grows… and occasionally takes unwise detours. These side-trips vary from person to person. I Run to the Hills highlights the dangers of the Desert of Duty and the Plains of License. The story doesn’t end there, though, but presses onward and higher toward the mountaintop.

Most of the readings in I Run to the Hills are only a couple of pages long. They’re grouped in longer chapters if you want to read them that way, or you can take them in morsel-sized moments. Either way, prepare to be challenged, encouraged and refreshed on the journey.

Author C. Maggie Woychik’s prose has elements of poetry and plenty of pithy sound-bytes. As we journey, she says, “Truths are for digesting, not just consuming.” And she tells us how: “Firmly clasp the piece of Light – catch it; then slowly release your fingers, using care not to allow it to slip away or be snatched by the cunning Truth-Robber.” (p.29)

C. Maggie Woychik is an award-winning author whose work has been published in a variety of magazines. I Run to the Hills is her first book. To learn more about Maggie, check out her website and spend some time on her blog, Encouraging Emerging Authors.

I Run to the Hills is a delightful, refreshing book to read and then to savour again over time.

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