Book Review | Moments and Days

Moments & Days: How Our Holy Celebrations Shape our Faith
by Michelle Van Loon

Michelle Van Loon writes about time and holy celebrations from a unique perspective in her book, Moments & Days.  She shares throughout the book from her experiences growing up in a Jewish family, finding faith in Christ and worshiping in Messianic congregations, serving in mainstream evangelical churches and then transitioning to a more liturgical style of worship.   In her faith journey, she found that longing for “holy days” that draw our attention to the significance of time and how to “experience eternity in the everyday.”moments and days

In Moments & Days, she begins by sharing about the Jewish feasts, their Scriptural background, and ways that they are celebrated.  She then offers some practical ways we could choose to recognize these special days in our own lives and families.

Her chapter on the Sabbath included some of my favorite insights in the book.  Many Christian authors have taken on the subject of Sabbath rest in recent years, but Michelle notes that mostly the message is one of “self-care:” We need rest because God designed us that way, so find ways to rest.  But  for the Jewish people, Sabbath wasn’t just an “afternoon off” to add a little sanity to an otherwise hectic week.  It was about being set apart and oriented toward God.  We don’t just keep the Sabbath; we keep the Sabbath “holy.”

In the second half of her book, Michelle walks through the liturgical holy days within the Christian tradition, from Advent and Christmas to the Holy Week of Easter and the “ordinary time” in the months before the Advent season begins again.  She balances with grace the ways different families and individuals choose to worship.

The whole book, actually, is balanced with a great deal of grace.  Michelle includes a discussion of that question: “Which is better?  Do we have to celebrate the Jewish holy days or follow the Christian calendar?”  Her answer is—either one.  Seek God and go for it!  With a look back at history and tradition, she offers both as a positive way to make time count and our lives focused on our journey with Him.

Included in the book are some of her family recipes for celebrating holy days and also a side-by-side calendar comparison to show how the Jewish feasts and Christian calendar differ.

This is a helpful and easy-to-read tool for those wanting an overview of sacred days and how to celebrate.  For more information about any one holiday, Michelle refers you to other sources that would provide more details and practical tips.  Her book sparks interest in the reader and encourages further study.

I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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