3 out of 4 stars
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Sabbatical of the Mind: The Journey from Anxiety to Peace by David L. Winters is a recount of the author’s untimely but very much needed break from the overwhelming pressure of everyday life.
Bored by the same job he has been doing for the Navy for more than 20 years, David starts looking for a job and gets fortunate to be accepted as a division director for a three-letter government agency. However, shortly after starting with his new job, David feels a burning pain in his rear end and eventually ends up in the emergency room of Holy Cross Hospital. He is later diagnosed with diabetes. Furthermore, he starts having panic attacks and that is on top of his fear of heights. As if that is not enough, he also breaks his pubic rami while out for dinner with a friend. One day, after another panic attack and inspired by the songs of Judy Dagraedt, David realizes that he lacks peace in his life and needs some personal time alone with God. So, six years before being eligible for retirement, David decided to go on a sabbatical.
With a foreword by Pastor Steve Reynolds of the Capitol Baptist Church, the book is divided into three major parts: Part I: Chased by Anxiety, Part II: Stopping to Find Answers and Part III: Bouncing Back with Love.The first part describes the author’s distress over numerous health problems, acrophobia and seemingly unfounded panic attacks which lead to his decision to go on a sabbatical after considering three very important points: God’s will, paying bills and his career. The second part chronicles the entire sabbatical and the third recounts how the author emerges and puts the result of his respite to the test.
Overall, the book is great and I enjoyed reading it. It is inspiring, encouraging, entertaining and, at times, funny. It is engaging that while at it, the reader may start thinking about his or her own life and what to do with it. I also find it enlightening that as I join the author in his journey, I even shed a tear at the part when he realized how much God loves him. It was probably not meant to be an emotional scene but it was touching for me, nonetheless. The writing is casual and lively it feels like the author is talking to the reader over a cup of coffee.
However, I had a difficult time following the order of things. Not only once did I find it hard to figure out when a particular event happened. The numerous flashbacks did not help either and made it even more confusing, to me. Moreover, ‘Losing to Live’ weight loss program was mentioned several times within the entire book but I did not find any particular scene with the author in it or while at it. Finally, I noticed several errors in the book including misspelled words, missing words and obvious typo errors.
I, therefore, give this book the rate of 3 out of 4 stars and I recommend it to everyone especially those who feel burnt out with the pressure of a busy and unfulfilled life.
Sabbatical of the Mind
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