Archive for ‘Adoption’

November 22, 2013

Linky Love, November 2013 Edition

Something New and Good: Our God Sunshines – This is an excellent post by a fellow RUF-worker-alumna about learning what a big deal it is to reflect on the glorious goodness of God. It’s not something easy to home in on for some of us serious, “nuevo-Puritan” types (clever descriptor is 100% Bekah), who are quite , and as you may have picked up on from my previous post, I was entrenched as a child – more than almost anyone around me – in the very type of severe gravitas Bekah discusses. I call myself a recovering legalist partly because I was so obsessed with sin – understanding it, digging it out, confessing it – sometimes confessing the same sin many, many times (not the same pattern recurring, but the same individual sins). And, like Bekah says, fighting sin is important. But the glorious goodness and magnificently generous kindness and the joy and laughter of our God are the point of the Gospel – not our disastrous messes. All that to say, go read it.

Giving Thanks: For Finding My Ring and Not Marrying a Pothead – My friend Missy is a delightful storyteller. This post made me smile a big, big smile, so I thought I’d share.

The Ridiculous Grace of Adoption – Marissa Cope, another cherished friend of mine, came out with this excellent piece on adoption over at The Gospel Coalition. November is National Adoption Awareness Month. (Yes, I know it’s also Movember and Native American Heritage Month and Lung Cancer Awareness Month and National Novel Writing Month and NoShaveNovember and a host of other things, but it is also Adoption Awareness Month, and y’all know how obsessed I am with adoption.)

How to Date When You’re Sick – This is an uplifting post by fellow-endometriosis-sufferer Rachel Meeks, who has come up with some pretty creative ways to have a good time with her husband even when she feels like crap. (Also, they sound like crazy-fun people I would like to hang out with, which always makes posts like this more interesting.) Her blog, Do I Look Sick?, is a new favorite. (She even has a post on flaxseed, which I found immensely helpful. Because, believe it or not, flaxseed has actually become an issue in my life.) It’s encouraging to see how other women are making life work despite the uncertainties, pains, and frustrations of this disease.

Dot Dot Dot – This is internet-old (almost 4 years old) but it still has me in stitches every single time. A voice actor does a dramatic reading of a game review by some kid whose spelling and grammar don’t suggest much hope for our education system. Add in awesome graphic design/typography/craziness and some, um, mood music, and it’s about the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. In case y’all missed this hilarious little video – well, carpe diem.

June 18, 2013

I’ve Found a New Book to Flog

Y’all know how last year I was rather insistent on the marvelousness of Tullian Tchividijian‘s Jesus + Nothing = Everything. I believe I said something to the effect of, “If you read one book this year, let it be this book.” Right? You totally remember that. 

Well, I’m pretty sure Lauren’s 2013 Book of the Year Award will be going to Rosaria Champagne Butterfield‘s The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert

Carl Trueman said this about the book:

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. I do not agree with everything she says; but I did learn from everything she wrote. It deserves the widest possible readership.

It’s a pretty rare thing for someone to be able to say, about any book, “I did learn from everything she wrote.” I can only hope to one day write that sort of book. Or, heck, that sort of blog post.

Butterfield’s style is unlike that of any other writer I’ve read. She’s writing a memoir, but in a very strongly retrospective voice. We hear her thoughts from a certain time, but also her thoughts about her thoughts, and her thoughts about her thoughts later, and sometimes also her thoughts about her thoughts now. I’m not saying she’s myopic. In fact, the beauty of her story comes in part from the communities that she’s been a part of throughout. We learn a lot about people – many people – who were and are important to her. This little book covers her life from peak of her professional career as an English and Women’s Studies professor at Syracuse through last year sometime, including along the way her incredibly life-disrupting conversion to Christianity, a number of moves, a few dogs, and an incredibly fabulous use of a quote from Jane Eyre.

Incidentally, I hear this was the book that was flogged like crazy at RUF Summer Conference this year. (BEST WEEK OF YOUR LIFE! That was for all you RUFers out there.) It’s a bit heady, but not in the theological language sense; and brilliantly, it’s less than 150 pages. The way Butterfield writes practically begs you to pace yourself and be thoughtful.

There are all kinds of delicious bits, but here is my favorite (at the moment). It comes near the end:

One time, Kent [Butterfield’s husband] was filling a pulpit at a small church in a small town. These places scare me, and for good reason. Knox was asleep on my shoulder and Mary was asleep in the car seat. A man walked up to me, not knowing that I was the preacher’s wife, and said: ‘So, is it chic for white women to adopt black kids these days?’ I took a deep breath and stood up to meet his gaze.

‘Are you a Christian?’ I asked him.

‘Yes, ma’am,’ he replied.

‘Did God save you because it was chic?’ We locked eyes until he dropped his head. He stammered something unintelligible and backed away slowly, seeming to understand that even when the bear does not look like the cubs, the trauma of having one’s head ripped off by a protective mama can be bloody business.” (111-112, emphasis mine, because clearly that is the best part)

[I feel I should clarify that, in the context of the text, Butterfield clearly does not think that she is “saving” kids by adopting them. Adopting children after the same manner in which God adopts us means choosing them, not because they are going to make us “look” a certain way to others, or make us feel better about ourselves, but because of love. This is the same God who “sets the lonely in families” (Psalm 68:6) – and He has principally done that in adopting His people as coheirs with Christ to join the family of the Trinity. Which – think about that for a second – is awesome and crazy and weird.]

It’s really, really good. So read it.

March 1, 2013

First 23 Books of 2013

Say Goodbye by Lisa Gardner – Lisa Gardner is good at the whole mystery/thriller-writing-thing
The Hole in Our Holiness by Kevin DeYoung – very good
The Chestnut King by N.D. Wilson – 3rd book in the 100 Cupboards series
The Gun Seller by Hugh Laurie – dude writes just like Dr. House talks
The Moving Finger by Agatha Christie – this one was particularly great fun
At Bertram’s Hotel by Agatha Christie
Adopting the Racing Greyhound by Cynthia A. Brannigan
A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie
The Priest’s Graveyard by Ted Dekker
Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowens – quite a bit of “meh” to be found here
The Devil Colony by James Rollins – who doesn’t love a ridiculous conspiracy theory thriller?
The Skeleton Key by James Rollins (novella)
Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies by Lee Livingood – most helpful book on greyhounds so far
My Life in France by Julia Child, with Alex Prud’homme – very interesting; strong motivation to learn how to make beurre blanc
Mystic River by Dennis Lehane – enjoyed it
The Lost Van Gogh by A.J. Zerries – ridic
The Racketeer by John Grisham
What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw by Agatha Christie
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
Love Walked In by Maria De Los Santos – LOVE LOVE LOVE
Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis – LOVE LOVE LOVE
A Conspiracy of Tall Men by Noah Hawley – barely made it throug
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green – very, very good – I can see why it managed to make most of the “best novels of 2012” lists

February 16, 2013

Adoption is wonderful and beautiful, and the greatest blessing I have ever experienced. Adoption is also difficult  and painful. Adoption is a beautiful picture of redemption. It is the Gospel in my living room. And sometimes, it’s just hard….

Adoption is a redemptive response to tragedy that happens in this broken world. And every single day, it is worth it, because adoption is God’s heart. His Word says, ‘In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will’ (Ephesians 1:5). He sets the lonely in families (see Psalm 68:6)…. Adoption is the reason I can come before God’s throne and beg Him for mercy, because He predestined me to be adopted as His child through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will – to the praise of His glorious grace.

– Katie Davis, Kisses from Katie, 72-73