The Grace Irwin Prize is Canada’s largest literary award for writers who are Christian. It celebrates the best book published in the associated year by a Canadian author who writes from a Christian worldview. Each year, all shortlisted books entered in The Word Awards are automatically considered for the Grace Irwin Prize.
During this secondary stage of competition, independent judges determine the winner of the Grace Irwin Prize. The prize is presented at The Word Awards Gala to the author of what judges deem is the year’s most outstanding book. All judges’ decisions are final.
With scores of books entered in the competition across multiple genres, I am humbled to be the winner of the grand prize, the 2021 Grace Irwin Best Book of the Year Award.
If you routinely follow my I Love the Psalms blog posts, you are in reality reading the daily devotions found in the double award-winning book, Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer.
Grace Lilian Irwin, after whom this prize is named, was a trailblazing Canadian Christian writer who passed away in September 2008 at age 101 after a vibrant life as an author, Classics scholar and ordained minister. Her alma mater, University of Toronto’s Victoria College, called her “an inspirational force in the lives of all who knew her.”
During her 38-year career teaching English, Latin and Greek at Humberside Collegiate Institute in Toronto, she spent her summers writing at her cottage in Haliburton, Ontario. Her first and best-known novel, Least of All Saints, was published in 1952.
For a closer look at the book that won this year’s Grace Irwin Best Book of the Year Award click here.
Here is a brief author bio taken from my website:
David Kitz is a Bible dramatist, an award-winning author, a conference speaker and teacher. For more than thirty years, he has served as an ordained minister with the Foursquare Gospel Church of Canada.
David has a Master’s degree in Biblical Studies, in addition to Bachelor’s degrees in both Arts and Education. His love for drama and storytelling is evident to all who have seen his Bible-based performances. For several years now, he has toured across Canada and the United States with a variety of one man plays for both children and adults. Though born and raised in Saskatchewan, David now lives in Ottawa, with his wife Karen. They have two adult sons, Timothy and Joshua and daughter-in-law Jasmine.
In all things let the Lord be lifted up. He is the source of all wisdom.
Here is the big news from the Word Awards last night. Not only did my book “Psalms 365” win in the Devotional/Inspirational category, but among scores of books entered across all genres, it also took home the grand prize, the Grace Irwin Best Book of the Year Award. I’m surprised, humbled and honored.
Special thanks goes to various members of The Word Guild, who over the years have helped and encouraged me as a Christian author and writer. Specifically, I want to thank Kim Bangs who urged me to begin blogging. This eventually led to the publication of Psalms 365: Develop a life of Worship and Prayer.
Finally, specific to this book project, I want to thank editors Sue Fairchild and Susan K. Stewart, cover designer, Derinda Babcock, and publisher Deb Haggerty at Elk Lake Publishing. The whole team has been a pleasure to work with.
To God be the glory.
Now you can journey through the Psalms in a year with this beautiful three-book set available in both paperback and Kindle formats. These daily devotions take you to the heart of David, the man after God’s own heart.
The Psalms are the biblical fount of worship and prayer. Learn to drink deeply from these life-giving waters. Here you will find guidance for your daily walk with the Lord. In these pages, you will acquaint yourself with the voice of the Good Shepherd. Allow him to lead you to the verdant pastures of his Word.
Psalms 365 is specifically designed to help you develop a life that is anchored in worship and prayer.
For a closer look at this three-book series click here.
The Psalms speak to our deepest needs!
God speaks to us—to humanity—through His word. This has been the case since the first God-inspired, God-directed scribe took pen and ink in hand. For over three millennia men and women have heard the voice of God through words of Holy Scripture.
How do we draw meaning from these words? In the twenty-first century can the word of God come alive to us and speak to our hearts? Are there insights we can draw upon by looking at the prayer and devotional life of the ancient Hebrews?
Within the Psalms we hear the deepest longings of the human heart. Here we find the full range of human experience—experiences that bring us face to face with God. Our joys and triumphs are reflected here. Our spirits soar to the heavens, but we also plumb the depths of tragic despair. Is it any wonder then, that throughout the ages men and women have found refuge in the Psalms?
When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, the devil urged him to turn stones into bread. Jesus responded by saying, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God’” (Matthew 4:4)
If for you, God’s word has been as palatable as stone, then ask the Holy Spirit to bring His word to life. In the Psalms we find life. We discover real people in a real relationship with God. Here we tap into the biblical fount of prayer and praise. Through the Psalms we discover what it means to know God and be fully known by Him.
For the past number of years, award-winning author, David Kitz has been bringing the Psalms to life through the medium of live drama. Here now in book form, from an actor and pastor’s perspective, he provides insight into the prayers and praise of the psalmist.
As you read these daily devotions listen. Listen and let God speak. Let Him speak to you through His living, Holy Word.
Come now and find yourself before your God through the eternal poetry of the Psalms.
Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer by award-winning author David Kitz is available now. Begin your personal, year-long journey through the Psalms. For a closer look at Volumes I and II click here.
If you enjoy my daily devotional posts on the Psalms, you may also enjoy Psalms Alive!
How do you connect with God? For three thousand years, God has been connecting with humankind through the prophetic prayer, praise and poetry of the biblical Psalms. Come follow David, the shepherd king, the man after Gods own heart, as we begin a journey to intimacy with God. Discover for yourself what a soul-bonding relationship with God looks like.
As never before, let the psalms come alive for you.
“David Kitz paints pictures with words, taking lessons from Scripture and nature to offer us a three-dimensional, multi-sensory relationship with God.” — Robert L. Briggs, Executive Vice President, American Bible Society
Psalm’s Alive! was inspired by years of the author performing dramatic readings of the Psalms. David still performs Psalms Alive! today.
David also writes weekly blog posts on the Psalms at davidkitz.wordpress.com
237 pages, trade paperback
To purchase from Amazon click here.
To purchase directly from the author click here.
Just before noon the doorbell rang. To my surprise, the book delivery I was expecting tomorrow arrived today. And here is the front cover:
This book completes the Psalms 365 devotional trilogy. The three-book set takes the reader through all 150 psalms with a reading for every day of the year.
Why dig into the Psalms?
Perhaps Christian humorist Phil Callaway of www.laughagain.org provides the best answer in his endorsement of Psalms 365:
I’m not certain I’d be alive without the Psalms. While my wife was losing her family to Huntington’s disease we lived in its inspiring pages. We still do. David’s devotional is a welcome companion on this journey, particularly for those needing a fresh shot of hope.
In a world of disease and political and economic turmoil, more than ever, we need the hope and encouragement the Psalms can bring.
Psalms 365 is specifically designed to help you develop a life of worship and prayer like the biblical David. Let author David Kitz take you on a journey—a journey to a deeper understanding of God’s will and his ways for your life. Each daily reading provides insight and inspiration for practical Christian living, allowing the Good Shepherd to guide you to the center of his will.
For a closer look at Psalms 365, volumes I, II & III click here.
Yes, I’m pleased to announce Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer, Volume I is shortlisted for a Word Guild Award in the devotional and inspirational category. It’s an honor to be recognized in this way.
As many of you already know, Volume II was released in late April. And Volume III will be available in early August. I’m working with Elk Lake Publishing to put the final touches on this three volume set of devotions covering the entire Book of Psalms. Putting together a complete set of devotions for an entire year is a large undertaking. Getting them published expands that project further.
I look forward to seeing all three books on my shelf soon. An award for Volume I would definitely enhance that experience.
For a closer look at Volumes I and II click here.
Watch for a cover photo of Volume III in the coming days.
Daily readings from the Psalms are sure to enhance your life and walk with the Good Shepherd. Will you follow where He leads?
A Book Review by Janet Sketchley
Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer, volume 1, by David Kitz (Elk Lake Publishing, 2020)
With Psalms 365, author and storyteller David Kitz provides short, practical, and personal daily devotions from the beloved Book of Psalms. I’ve found it to be a valuable addition to my day.
Each reading points to a psalm, drawing on a key verse for the day’s focus. There’s a conversational-style reflection on the passage and a prayer of response. Then to encourage readers to deepen a lifestyle of worship and prayer each devotional concludes with a question to think about and to perhaps take into personal conversation with God.
Anyone familiar with the psalms knows that some are songs of worship, some of lament, others of repentance or even anger. Not always easy topics to draw an inspirational message from! David Kitz mines treasure from each one.
Volume 1 of Psalms 365 begins at Psalm 1 and goes to the end of Psalm 51. Volume 2 is also available, covering the next section, and volume 3 is still to come.
Excerpts from the Psalms 365 series can be found on the author’s blog, I Love the Psalms. On the blog he includes photos, which aren’t part of the books. Award-winning author David Kitz is also a Bible dramatist, conference speaker, and ordained minister. For more about him and his books, visit davidkitz.ca.
[Review copy provided by the author. My opinions are my own.]
One of the challenges I face as an author is finding readers who are willing to write reviews for my books. At point of sale, when asked, purchasers often agree to write a review, but follow through is often lacking.
I get it. People are busy. People forget. In some cases, newly purchased books sit unread for months or even years.
Why are reviews important? They are a great help to potential readers. Most book sales are online these days, so reviews take on added significance. As a review writer you are helping potential customers make an important decision. If the book has been beneficial to you, why not tell others about it through a short review?
Your review also serves as an excellent form of feedback for the author. Is there something you particularly liked about the book’s content, or the author’s writing style? Tell her or him about it by writing a review.
Not every book is worthy of a five-star review. Valid criticism well received sharpens an author’s skills. As a published author, I know that’s true for me on a personal level. An honest opinion well expressed is always worthy of serious consideration.
Regular readers of my posts may be aware my daily devotions on the Psalms are now available in book form. And yes, I welcome your reviews of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer, Volumes I & II. Volume III will complete the series and is scheduled for release in August. Reviews may be posted on a variety of platforms, such as Goodreads and Amazon.
You may also wish to checkout other books I have written by typing my name into the Amazon search bar or by visiting my website.
God bless you, and thanks for your help and feedback.