Archive for March, 2014

March 28, 2014

How valuable to know that union with our Lord means nothing can keep us from being heard by the Father. It simply does not matter how we feel or how besieged we are by temptation. We know that we can approach God’s throne by virtue of the fact that Christ faced and defeated every temptation for us…. We come through Him, and it is His life that God sees when we seek refuge from our sins in Him.

Douglas Kelly, If God Already Knows, Why Pray?, 87

March 25, 2014

Why on earth do vicars imagine God cannot be spoken to in simple language and needs everything explained to Him in at least three different ways? I always imagine God as the last person to be impressed by long words or to be deceived by specious excuses. For heaven’s sake, He made us. He knows perfectly well that we are fragile, stupid, glorious, grubby and brave.

Aunt Vespasia, in Anne Perry’s Highgate Rise

March 1, 2014

Reading Update: Jan/Feb 2014

This year, I am reading a lot of books about prayer and catching up on some famous children’s fiction, especially award winners (Newberry and Newberry Medal winners, for example). I’ve starred the latter; the former are incredibly obvious. I’m also teaching AP English Language & Composition; I’ll be bolding those this year, just for fun.

  1. A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World by Paul Miller – really great, really helpful book
  2. The View from Saturday* by E.L. Konigsburg – a book about the things that can bind “misfits” together and make them strong
  3. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson – finally read this after hearing positive things about it for years, and while I enjoyed it and am glad I read it, it wasn’t quite what I expected – bittersweet, but less thoughtful than I’d thought
  4. The Giver* by Lois Lowry – good introduction to dystopian fiction for the kiddos
  5. The Hero and the Crown* by Robin McKinley – I just adored this. Wish I had read it in middle school – it would have fit right in with some of my other reading choices, like Stephen Lawhead’s Song of Albion trilogy
  6. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry* by Mildred Taylor
  7. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe 
  8. Death by Living by N.D. Wilson – really loved this
  9. Bethlehem Road (Thomas & Charlotte Pitt #10) by Anne Perry 
  10. Without Fail (Jack Reacher #6) by Lee Child
  11. The Angel’s Kiss: A Melody Malone Mystery by Justin Richards – my first foray into Doctor Who literature which is, in fact, a thing, and which I am, in fact, apparently a big enough Whovian to read and love. 
  12. Introducing Covenant Theology by Michael Horton – a great explanation and overview of covenant theology (Horton’s arguments are clear, and his explanations are the most coherent I’ve ever seen). I’ve recently come to believe that the preponderance of evidence supports credobaptism within the context of a robust covenant theology, and though Horton and I disagree on baptism, I found almost everything he said compelling.
  13. The Assassin’s Curse (The Assassin’s Curse Book 1) by Cassandra Rose Clark – despite what I have heard, this series is hardly the new Harry Potter. It’s got a lot of merit.
  14. Divergent (Divergent Trilogy Book 1) by Veronica Roth – despite what I have heard, this trilogy is not quite the masterpiece that The Hunger Games is, but it’s pretty dang good dystopian fiction (if a little too teen-centric to be believable)
  15. Persuader (Jake Reacher #7) by Lee Child
  16. Insurgent (Divergent Trilogy Book 2) by Veronica Roth – I stand by my previous statement, but I really dig this series.
  17. Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem by Kevin DeYoung – Good. Helpful. Totally what I needed.
  18. A Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood – dystopian novel with an extra creep factor
  19. Lamar Hunt: A Life in Sports by Michael MacCambridge – it turns out I played first grade soccer directly because of the amazing efforts and influence of this man on American culture of sports – who knew?
  20. Blue Hole Back Home by Joy Jordan-Lake – I cannot think of a way to summarize this story, but it is fantastic. (I seriously have tried different tactics for the last 10 minutes and still have nothing remotely satisfactory.)