Tuesday, April 12, 2011

reading it again, for the first time

Recently I gave  a copy of Mere Christianity by CS Lewis to a friend.  I’ve read it before, and it seemed like an appropriate choice givenmere christianity our recent conversations.  It’s been a LONG time since I’ve read the whole thing, and I felt very much like I needed to reread it so that I could have an intelligent (okay…semi-intelligent!) conversation about it if there were questions.  There have been multiple copies here—it’s required summer reading for our kids before their senior year in high school—so I knew we had it.  I owned a copy when we got married, and I think Jim did too.    But I couldn’t find a copy anywhere!  It seems that some of my crew had taken theirs with them to college, and other copies have been loaned out to friends.  Fortunately, buying a book can be as simple as clicking a link and having it downloaded to my Kindle.  Presto!  A copy to read, when and where I want it.  I spent a chunk of my free time at women's retreat reading it, and finished it the next week (Jim and Victoria were both gone; it was just the boys and me at home so I could read as much as I wanted after 8pm). 

Wow!  To read it without all my notes in the hard copy I own was interesting.  It was like reading for the first time.  Only now I”m much older (!) and more mature (I hope) than I was the first time I read it.  I didn’t even particularly care for parts of it the first time through.  Or the second time through.  This time?  Not so much.  So many things made much more sense than they ever have before.  I found myself quite enjoying the read, taking lots of notes and asking many questions.  I’ve spent lots of time thinking some of his points through.  A portion of my drive to Pullman and back (11 1/2 hours round trip this time…UGH!) was mulling over some significant questions I had.  Now I think I’m ready for that (semi) intelligent conversation.   Maybe.  Someone I know called Mere Christianity a ‘cerebral’ book, and I agree.  That’s why it seemed like such a good fit for my friend.  Me?  Definitely not so cerebral.  This time through, though, much of what I read struck a chord with me, probably in part because it put into words what I can’t adequately explain.  Logically, no less…certainly not my strength.  :)

spring fling button
So, my friend, thank you.  Your questions challenged me to do some  things I needed to do.   Challenged me to deepen my thinking.  Challenged me to put together rational, logical arguments.  Challenged me to truly understand the logic of the ‘why’ behind my faith.  As a bonus, I have had some great conversations with Hailey and Emily, both of whom have loved Mere Christianity.  It was fun to talk with them and learn what they loved, to share my favorite parts.  We have all grown from it.  I would love to hear your thoughts on it.  Lunch?  Name the time and the place.  I’ll be there.  :)

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