Friday, December 12, 2008

Where I am now

Recently I have been doing a lot of reading. I started, of course, with reading the Bible. Then a friend lent me "In His Steps". This is a very good book and really made the WWJD bumper stickers make a lot more sense. The book also led to questions about what exactly 'revival' is and about revival periods in history. My pastor was kind enough to lend me a book on this (sorry, don't remember then name it was a text book I believe). From the outside the WWJD campaign/movement looked very superficial and the use of the "Got Milk?" style of add didn't help any. After doing this reading though, I found that there is some real value to evaluating your actions and decisions in this way. It's much more difficult than it seems to try to live by this standard. Failure is constant and inevitable, the standard is unreachable by us in our lifetime. However, we are eternal and having goals beyond our lives is not unreasonable.

I have started working my way through the "Left Behind" series. Not too much to say about these books. They are well written and very enjoyable to read. Basically a series of novels following a group of people living after the Rapture.

For my birthday I was given a couple of books by C.S. Lewis, "Mere Christianity" and "The Screwtape Letters". I enjoyed "The Screwtape Letters", but "Mere Christianity" is an amazing book. C.S. Lewis manages to provide proof of the validity of Christianity and delve into the core of christian beliefs like nothing I have ever read. While his language is simple and straight forward, the topics and his discussion of them really are a great example of rhetorical analysis. I'm not finished with it yet, but already know that I will need to read this book a couple more times to really get everything out of it. He does a marvelous job of showing that christian ideals like Hope and Faith are not just the vacuous simple ideas they have come to mean in common language, but that they are the tip of a very deep and meaningful way of life. I would say this is a must read for any christian and any non-christian who is an intellectual, his reasoning is straight forward and very hard to refute.

I just finished working through "The Purpose Driven Life". One annoyance with this book; Rick Warren pushing you to buy his other stuff (there is Purpose Driven everything... wouldn't be surprised to see Purpose Driven days of the week underwear). That out of the way, on to my thoughts. A very good book with so many pointers and things to work on in your life that I have to go back through my journal and make a list. Speaking of that, the journal is well worth buying to go along with the book. This blog is mostly due to reading this book and the advice in it. I had a journal of sorts, a draft email in my gmail where I wrote about my frustrations and anger. This was a good way to get things off my chest without hurting anyone and it was somewhat useful. However, I think that saving all that garbage led me to focusing too much on the negative, and honestly a lot of it was stuff no one ever would want to see. So, I decided to create this blog to record my more worthwhile thoughts and feelings. If you take this book seriously and take the time to sit down and talk about each days reading and/or write out your thoughts it is a great way to really look at yourself and your faith critically but also very positively.

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