The provocative ideas and touching insights found in The Joy in Loving spring from incidents in Mother Teresa's own remarkable life. She speaks of men and women who have lived and died uncomplainingly, even in the midst of great poverty and deprivation; of wealthy businessmen whose indifference has been transformed into compassion and charity, and of her encounters with people and governments around the globe. Through all of this, Mother Teresa emphasizes the need for a disciplined, loving family life, for "in the home begins the disruption of the peace of the world." Drawing on more than seventy years of selfless service to the poorest of the poor, she discusses the importance of work and prayer, charity and service, the right to life and, above all, the need to love--unconditionally and absolutely.
The authors, who worked closely with Mother Teresa during her lifetime, have drawn together stories and prayers inspired by the missionary, who worked tirelessly on behalf of India's poor with her sisters of charity. Each day of the year is assigned a brief story or blessing: A child goes without sugar so Mother Teresa may have it; a truckload of bread miraculously arrives for starving Indians when the rice has run out. Many of the passages are quotes from Mother Teresa herself, and all of them challenge the reader to live up to her saintly view of humanity and suffering. If the day-by-day approach doesn't fit, there's an easy-to-browse index, organized by theme ("cheerfulness," "humility," "suffering"). Her standards are high, however, and normal sinners may find her words more challenging than uplifting.