March 11, 2012

Finishing Chapter 1

Sorry to have been so long getting back to finish this chapter.

Readers Guide Question: Ann describes how the death of her sister "tears a hole in the canvas of the world" (p. 16) and later writes, "I wonder... if the rent in the canvas of our life backdrop... might actually become a places to see.  To see through to God" (p. 22).  Is this a metaphor you find intriguing, comforting, or disturbing?  How do you understand it in light of your own experiences of loss?

My notes: I find the metaphor both intriguing and somewhat comforting.  I often think lately that our 'comfortable' American life has insulated us and isolated us from God.  A very dear friend, (who has served as a missionary in a very poor country), once told me that living in a third-world country makes God more real - in a way that He isn't here to us in the States.  In a place of utter lack - you trust God and see Him more clearly simply because He is all there is.  When our lives are torn open - He is the one who is real.  There in the deepest pain - even when we sometimes refuse to know that He is there.  Perhaps - it is in the torn places that we can see because God seems nearer when we don't have barriers of other comforts & distraction?
RG Question: The author's narrative is rich with vivid phrasing and evocative imagery.  What lines or descriptions stand out for you?  Why do you find them to be powerful?
My notes: p 16 "Do we ever think of this busted-up place as the result of us ingrates, unsatisfied, we who punctured it all with a bite? The fruit's poison has infected the whole of humanity.  Me. I say no to what He's given."
p 21 "...raw and real, stripped of any theological cliche, my exposed, serrated howl to the throne room."  snip "And I see.  At least a bit more. When we find ourselves groping along, famished for more, we can choose."
This is me... admitting honest & real.   Laying myself open to the reality of how far I fall short of the Sunday morning smile - how much I need Jesus every single day.  How I desperately need his grace pouring - thundering down on me most days.  And how I can choose - choose to live this life, choose to see the grace each day.
And the thesis of the entire book
p 23 "A dare to an emptier, fuller life."  Take the dare... journey with me as I explore the truths God has given me through Ann's book.

Blessings on the journey~