Thursday, October 23, 2014

Enjoying Good Books

I like to read. And I've read a lot of good books in the last few months. I was part of a book club over the summer that read several faith encouraging and faith challenging books like Nik Ripken's The Insanity of God.

I joined a book club this fall reading the Classics and I've read Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as well as Jane Eyre for the first time ever, and enjoyed Pride and Prejudice  all over again.

I've been doing some family history and am reading a wonderful book of letters between my great-grandmother and great-grandfather when they were courting back in the late 1800s (written by my second cousin who I just found this fall). It's called If Nothing Happens... by Jennifer Elvgren.

Piggybacking off that family history research, I've read some very interesting books about colonial Massachusetts and colonial Connecticut (the research led me back to colonial days in Maryland, New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts as well as two relatives who were on the Mayflower and another one who lived in Salem during the infamous witch trials!). I'm part-way through a book called Salem Witch Judge: The Life and Repentance of Samuel Sewall by Eve LaPlante.

I also read a book called A Wilder Rose by Susan Wittig Albert. It will change everything you thought you knew about Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Little House series. If you loved those books, you'll be intrigued by this one! (one word of does contain some bad language and allude to some other things I wouldn't want my 9-year old reading for quite a few more I'm not recommending it for children)

But today I picked up a book that I'm really excited about. Its short but oh so sweet and looks like it will be one of those "for such a time as this" type books. You know, the kind that plops down in your lap right when you really need it most! Its called Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full  by Gloria Furman. I've enjoyed reading Gloria Furman's posts on the Desiring God blog and the Gospel Coalition blog (she's definitely worth looking up!). So I bought her book too, and this morning I was encouraged with these words from p. 20...

"The gospel stands above and beyond all the most practical, family-friendly, or cost-effective philosophies of mothering. The good news of Jesus Christ is superior to our to-do lists and metaphorical mother-of-the-year trophies. This is because the greatest problem a mother has is not a lack of creativity, accomplishment, or skill, but her inability to love God and others as Jesus loves her (John 13:34). Without a mediator to speak for us, our sin will surely separate us from our holy God, both now and forever (Rom. 3:23)...God's irresistible grace binds our wandering heart to himself and frees us to love him back and overflow in love to our neighbors. We have been ransomed from sin and death and given eternal life by the precious blood of Christ (I Peter 1:18-19). And because of Christ's work on the cross, we can live God's way of love in our homes and in the world even as our hands are full (Gal. 5:16-26; Eph. 4:17-6:18)."

and here's one more thought from the next page...

"We need to remember that each day is like a sigh that is too brief to measure, yet it is chock full of eternal significance. And into this brief sigh of an ordinary day, the Holy Spirit erupts and overflows with the love of God in Christ into our heart. This is astonishing."

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