Cannonball Moments

Telling Your Story, Deepening Your Faith

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ISBN: 978-0-8294-5436-9
Paperback | 144 pages

Tell your story, change your life.

Each of us has a story to tell. And each of our stories makes up a vital thread of the tapestry of human life: God's great story of love and creativity. The catalyst for this personal reflection is often a "cannonball moment"—a time of (sometimes explosive) change in our lives brimming with both challenge and opportunity, heartache and joy. In recognizing these cannonball moments, we see more fully the breadth and depth of our personal story and the values that underpin it. This self-work empowers us to listen more attentively to our hearts and to the stories of others—and to inspire all to act for the common good.

By applying Ignatian principles of inner work and self-reflection to storytelling, Eric Clayton offers guidance on how to notice details in your daily life, to develop an attitude of healthy indifference in matters great and small, and respond to feelings of restlessness with clarity and focus. This book offers encouragement and direction, examples to show the way, and practical exercises to help you discover and reflect on your own cannonball moments.

The time to tell your story is now.


“The power of story can lead us down spiritual corridors to meet God. Mr. Clayton's tale not only leads ultimately to God but also to healing and reconciliation. It is a spiritual roadmap in the Ignatian tradition, and reading it becomes a journey with Christ, who is the narrator of all our stories.” (Patrick Saint-Jean, S.J., author of The Crucible of Racism: Ignatian Spirituality and the Power of Hope)
“Eric Clayton writes with passion and energy. He roots spirituality, prayer and the search for God in everyday experience. A wonderful help for anyone looking for their way forward and who wants to deepen their life.” (Fr. John Dardis, S.J., General Counsellor for Discernment and Apostolic Planning and Director of Communications in the General Curia of the Society of Jesus in Rome)
"Cannonball Moments is an engaging book full of stories and practical wisdom steeped in Ignatian spirituality.  It invites the reader to reflect on and share our personal stories of God encountering us in unexpected ways!  I highly recommend this book for anyone looking to deepen their understanding of God's presence in the lived stories of our lives." (Becky Eldredge, Spiritual director, retreat facilitator, and author)
"Spiritual growth requires that we be willing to look at ourselves and our histories with fresh eyes; yet our personal stories are often the most rigidly held, leaving little room for healing and reinterpreting through the Holy Spirit. Cannonball Moments is a book for any spiritual seeker with the courage to re-examine stale narratives, the will to make sense of their story, and the desire for a greater sense of purpose." (Shannon K. Evans, author of Rewilding Motherhood and Embracing Weakness)
In this insightful book, Eric Clayton thoughtfully and vulnerably shares his own stories, but also invites us to tell our own, and, above all, to see within them the loving presence of the God who often surprises us. With opportunities for reflection and contemplation throughout, this book is a beautiful, guided retreat for anyone who seeks to know God more intimately through joy and sorrow, certainly and confusion, and everything in between. (Cameron Bellm, author of A Consoling Embrace: Prayers for a Time of Pandemic)

Author Bio

Eric Clayton

​Eric A. Clayton is the deputy director of communications at the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States. He lives in Baltimore, MD, with his wife and children. You can find out more about Eric here.

Illumination Book Award Gold Medalist, Christian Living, 2023

Catholic Media Association Book Awards, first place in Pastoral Ministry - Young & Young Adult, 2023

Catholic Media Association Book Awards, honorable mention in Popular Presentation of the Catholic Faith, 2023

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