"God showed me something small, no bigger than a hazelnut, lying in the palm of my hand… and it was round as a ball. I looked at it with the eye of my understanding and thought: 'What can this be?' And it was generally answered thus: 'It is all that was made.' It was so small I thought it might disappear, but I was answered... everything has being through the love of God." --Julian of Norwich

Saturday, May 11, 2013

What I'm into: Easter season

What?!  Is it already Ascension?!

Well, I left you all hanging there through Easter season.  This blog got stuck on Good Friday with those gorgeous, challenging words from T. S. Eliot.  The plain truth is that I still struggle to know how to embody Resurrection, to know what living in Eastertide looks like.  For that reason, I'm glad that the church calendar gave me five weeks to let it sink in:  He is risen, just as he said.

But, in an attempt to catch you up on the period of my virtual silence, I'd like to participate in a blogging tradition that I've come across on several lovely blogs, especially Sarah Bessey's and Kathleen Quiring's:  What I'm into.

This Easter I've been into:


  • The Four Quartets, T.S. Eliot -- For normal people, even the thought of reading Eliot gives them a headache.  When I had a three-day migraine in April, I also got a craving to read this incredible four-part poem again.  I had been living in "East Coker," the second poem within the poem, for all of Lent (and beyond).  This particular time through "The Dry Salvages" (the third) has gripped me.  Especially these words:
There is no end, but addition: the trailing
 Consequence of further days and hours,
 While emotion takes to itself the emotionless
 Years of living among the breakage
 Of what was believed in as the most reliable—
 And therefore the fittest for renunciation.”
                    -T.S. Eliot, “The Dry Salvages” II
  • Loving our Kids on Purpose, Danny Silk --  Though I would tweak the theological underpinnings in one or two little places, I am wholeheartedly behind Silk's creative, gentle approach to Christian parenting.  I already put several of his suggestions into practice, especially when he encouraging giving kids choices to diffuse conflict. ("Well, we have to go now Lucy, but would you like to wear your sandals or your shoes?  Your pink coat or your blue one?")
In Process
  • All Hallows Eve, Charles Williams -- As a child, I adored the inklings, and now as an adult, I respect them in a whole new way.  Last year I read all of Williams' books, this year I'm slowly buying them up, because I must own them.  If you have never dipped your toe into Charles DO IT NOW!  This one is my favorite.  What he accomplishes here is breathtaking.
  • The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald -- Um, my high school self kinda liked this book, but this time through, meh.
  • The Brothers Karamazov, Fyodor Dostoyevski -- I'm not sure what I expected, probably something long and boring, but on every page I'm thinking "Oh, that's why people love this book!"  I also love it.  However, I might never actually get to the end... 
  • Surprised by Hope, N.T. Wright -- I'm really looking forward to hearing Wright's perspective as New Testament scholar about where we've been misunderstanding what the earliest Christian writers (like Paul) had to say about heaven, hell, and what happens when we die, focusing on the meaning of Christ's bodily resurrection.  I need more resurrection.
In the Bible
  • Mark -- Mark has such a striking end, doesn't it?  In fear and trembling.  That's about where I'm at as I sit these days processing Easter.
  • Titus -- Sometimes I'm so glad that the gospel deals with my sin because there are days when it threatens to crush me.
  • Ecclesiastes -- Preparing a new book study for the youth.

(I'm not much of a music-listener, but still...)
  • K'naan, Troubador -- The song about Fatima makes me cry every time.  So sad and beautiful.

Television (via PC)
  • Freaks and Geeks -- OMG. OMG. OMG.  How did I live so long without seeing this? :)

  • Hmmm... yeah, not so much. Or well, Netflix fare that is not much worth mentioning.

  • Modern Literature by Lauren Wilkinson-- Audio course available via Regentaudio.com.  I've been listening to the lectures on--who else?--T. S. Eliot to pass the time while I fold laundry and weather headaches. 
  • Simeon Trust Women of the Word conference -- After feeling many ups and downs in my new role as a youth pastor this year, I attended this conference to help me have more confidence in teaching the Bible.  Of course, I've got all this head knowledge about Bible study, but reading the Bible can still be tough for me.  This conference helped and even confirmed my calling to continue to teach God's word.
  • New Duplo
  • Chemical-free Sunscreen
  • shorts
  • Thrifting summery clothes for myself and Lucy
  • sunshine
  • going to the park, multiple times a day when possible.

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