It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start. -Mother Teresa

Friday, November 6, 2015

Recent Reading

I have a friend who posts about what she is reading. I LOVE IT. I also love when people keep up on their Goodreads.  There are just so many books and so little time...hearing what others are reading helps to sort it out.  Some books that I have read recently including some of my favorite lines and general thoughts from each one:

Paper Towns by John Green

It is a young adult novel and it is not surprise it was made into a movie. It a typical John Green book: teen angst, literary analogies, enjoyable characters...who are teens but with - the unbelievable but no less enjoyable - vocabularies of West Wing Characters). Will I read it again? No. Will I see the movie? Eventually. Will I continue to read John Green (even though I am an adult)? Of course. 

"...the more I realize that humans lack good mirrors. It's so hard for anyone to show us how we look, and so hard for us to show anyone how we feel."

Peeing is like a good book in that it is very, very hard to stop once you start.

I think she thinks my job is to please her, and that should be my dearest wish, and when I don't please her - I get shut out.

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

In my book club, we each get a turn to nominate three books. Our fellow members secretly vote and the winning book is announced at book club. This book was our November read. One of the reasons I enjoy book club is because I am stretched to read things that I would never pick up. There is not a lot in this book that appeals to me. (I am most turned away by the unrealistic magic and that it is part of a series...I am not a fan of series.) I rated it a two out of 5 which means despite all that, I didn't hate it. It faintly reminded me of books by Cecelia Aherns (PS I Love You, The Gift, Thanks for the Memories).

She drove a convertible, wore diamonds with denim, and she never missed a homecoming game. She was so southern that she cried tears that came straight from the Mississippi, and always smelled faintly of cottonwood and peaches.

All the Burgess women in town, who never had less than 6 children each, walked around in a fog until their last child left home. When their youngest finally left the nest, they always did something crazy, like burn all their respectable, high-neck dresses and wear too much perfume.

Strange, after all, depended on your personal definition.

Every Bitter Thing is Sweet by Sara Hagerty

This book was recommended by a blogger that I follow, Shannon at We A Great Parade. I read 3/4 of it but just couldn't read another word. It might be me because I am not in the greatest mental place right now. It might be the book because the author felt pretty neurotic. It may just be the combination of the two....either way, I read most of it. And it made me think...for a book that didn't even finish, you can see that I liked a lot of passages from it! 

The umbilical cord stretched over a wide ocean but was there, nonetheless. The Father had forged a connection, even before our eyes stared into theirs.

We had become a family, in a moment, yet I still didn't know Caleb's birthmarks or Eden's freckles. I couldn't serve their favorite meal or find their ticklish spots....Each of us was a new part of whole, though God had known us as "us" since the beginning of time. We had a history together, though we'd lived apart.

It was as if somewhere in the recess of my mind I believed that if I kept pouring out externally, I wouldn't need to face any internal rifts in my heart. The disconnect between who God made me to be and who I was becoming in order to please Him - to do this Christian life as I believed He'd ordained - was subconscious, but I made a patter out of not addressing it. My concept of God and of following Him was creating enough flurry to hide what was broken inside.

Not only did we define ourselves by our output, we defined each other that way too.

I didn't know how to do "mess" outwardly, in the presence of others. Even those who loved me. I had lived so long tending to the outer parts of me and my faith that I had sparse understanding of how to tend to the inside, much less speak of it to another.

....I had begun to meet others who wore a brand of Christianity that was attractive, but foreign to me. In retrospect it seems orchestrated by God that our everyday circles had broadened enough to bring in a few additional friends of various ages who, individually, pursued God in a way that felt like they were a collective whole. Some of them didn't even know one another. But they all shared something in common. They acted as if they believed God didn't just tolerate them; He enjoyed them. And yet their messes were more visible than mine.

Then we each successive layer of circumstantial pain, new false ideas of God that we'd carried were unearthed....all revealed ways in which I saw God that didn't line up with what His Word said about Him.

Have you read any of these books? 
If so, what were your thoughts? 
What have you been reading recently? 
What are your favorite lines from it? 

1 comment:

  1. Hurray for a book post!!!! :) I have neither read nor previously heard of any of these. I also love book discussion groups because it pushed me out of my comfort zone to read books I likely would never choose. Sometimes I'm surprised by one I really like, other times I vow to never read another by that author! :)

    I'm currently reading: "How to Read a Book" (outstanding, but funny title for a voracious reader, hmmm?), re-reading Teaching From Rest (because it's JUST. THAT. GOOD!) and All The Light We Cannot See (not very far in).