Unhurried Lent: Day 27

A Word

So I’ve been fighting a migraine all day, which gives a person plenty of time to think while trying to take your mind off the blinding pain…at least until the prescriptions knock you out. So I didn’t do any creating, but this is the word that I’ve been dialoguing with Jesus about today.

Trust

This image came from a calendar. I don’t own the rights to it or know who to credit.

In fact this may be the word that I have spent the most time dialoguing with Jesus about over the course of my life. I like the image above, but it is the flowery version. I think I experience trust as something much grittier, like an “all in” cliff diving type of image. I have a board of Pinterest that gives me some visual reminders.

Trust is like Cliff Diving
It’s an “all in” kind of thing

Visit my Pinterest board here

Unhurried Lent: Days 25 & 26

Somewhere Distant – Somewhere Close

When I started thinking about somewhere distant I could hear the lyrics of Rich Mullins in my head…”the other side of the world is not so far away.”

Maybe it comes with age, technology and travel, but no place seems particularly distant anymore. The one thing that feels distant to me is the new heaven and new earth. I long for that kingdom with every fiber of my being, but sometimes it feels so very far away.

And then again, it also feels close. I see God at work, redeeming, restoring, making new, and suddenly I remember that the kingdom is coming every day. It is close. It is right around every corner. It is as certain as spring after a long winter season.

So I decided to make yesterday’s post and today’s post a combination.

Perspective: A long way off or just around the bend

If you haven’t been following along the blog thus far, the main idea in these posts is that I’m taking time each day during Lent to slow myself down by reflecting on and creatively responding to a theme.

Unhuried Lent: Day 23

Somewhere Warm

I’m pretty much always going to choose someplace cold over someplace warm, unless that someplace warm is cuddling under a blanket, in front of a roaring fire drinking hot chocolate and watching the snow fall outside. But, since I don’t have a fireplace handy for a photo op I’ll let Thailand serve as my someplace warm. Though in truth I think of Thailand as someplace ridiculously hot and not just “warm”.

Isn’t it great that God is creative and has made such diversity? I know a lot of people who prefer warm climates to cold ones. There is beauty in that uniqueness.

Rural Thailand
Elephants are amazing and they like warm climates

Book Review: A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

https://amzn.to/2Ot1h1t

About the Book:

Since Eugene Peterson first wrote this spiritual formation classic nearly forty years ago, hundreds of thousands of Christians have been inspired by its call to deeper discipleship. As a society, we are still obsessed with the immediate; new technologies have only intensified our quest for the quick fix. But Peterson’s time-tested prescription for discipleship remains the same?a long obedience in the same direction. Following Jesus in this way requires a deepening life of prayer, and throughout history Christians have learned to pray from the Psalms.

Peterson finds encouragement for today’s pilgrims in the Songs of Ascents (Psalms 120-134), sung by travelers on their way to worship in Jerusalem. With his prophetic and pastoral wisdom, Peterson shows how the psalms teach us to grow in worship, service, joy, work, happiness, humility, community, and blessing. This special commemorative edition of A Long Obedience in the Same Direction includes a new preface taken from Leif Peterson’s eulogy at his father’s memorial service.

My Thoughts:

This book wasn’t actually what I expected based on the title.  Nor was it the particular style of writing that I have come to associate with Eugene Peterson, though I suspect that comes from the fact that this is a much older work than the ones I have been reading.

I would describe the book as a devotional style reflection on each of the Psalms of ascent. I found that some chapters carried a lot of weight and impact as I read them, while others seemed to ramble about more than a little.

I can recommend the book. It is worth reading. I found that there were particular passages that stayed with me long after I read them. In fact, the title alone has had impact on my life, even long before I cracked the cover. But it won?’t be added to my list of Peterson favorites. Maybe it will become a favorite of yours?

I received a free digital galley of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Book Review: The Warrior Maiden

https://amzn.to/2OsnZH0

About the Book:

This fresh reimagining of the classic tale takes us to fifteenth-century Lithuania where both love and war challenge the strongest of hearts.

When Mulan takes her father’s place in battle against the besieging Teutonic Knights, she realizes she has been preparing for this journey her whole life,and that her life, and her mother’s, depends on her success. As the adopted daughter of poor parents, Mulan has little power in the world. If she can’t prove herself on the battlefield, she could face death, or, perhaps worse, marriage to the village butcher.

Disguised as a young man, Mulan meets the German duke’s son, Wolfgang, who is determined to save his people even if it means fighting against his own brother. Wolfgang is exasperated by the new soldier who seems to be one step away from disaster at all times or showing him up in embarrassing ways.

From rivals to reluctant friends, Mulan and Wolfgang begin to share secrets. But war is an uncertain time and dreams can die as quickly as they are born. When Mulan receives word of danger back home, she must make the ultimate choice. Can she be the son her bitter father never had? Or will she become the strong young woman she was created to be?

My Thoughts:

I find Melanie Dickerson a bit hit or miss for me. Some of her books I’ve loved. Some of her books are enjoyable, but forgettable. I think for me this falls into the second category. I found The Warrior Maiden to be an easy and agreeable read, but it’s not a book that will stick with me in the long run. I’m not sure that I found the characters or the story altogether believable, but it was a nice enough way to idle away a Sunday afternoon.

I review for BookLook Bloggers