Monday, June 7, 2010

Books, Books, and More Books

I spent some time this weekend thinking over the value of stories and how much time I have spent with a book in hand.  My hands have not been empty of a book for any lengthy period of time.   As far back as I can remember I have nearly always been lost in some story or another, and I was hoping it was justifiable and not a waste of time.  I realize that I must be disciplined and keep myself grounded in reality, but I came to the conclusion that as long as I did those things, it was completely okay to be lost in other worlds.  Think of all the things you learn from books (and stories)!

I learned to always check my rear-view mirror from Nancy Drew and Jack Bauer.  I learned that it wasn't really how you dressed but what was in your heart from Sara Crewe in A Little Princess.  I learned, "What time I am afraid, I will put my trust in Thee" from Mandie, and "Do not fear, for I am with you.  Do not be dismayed for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you.  I will uphold you with My righteous right hand" from the Love Comes Softly series.  I solved mysteries with Trixie Belden and learned about life on the prairie with Laura Ingalls.  I learned about a Yorkshire accent from The Secret Garden and reveled in Jesus' sacrifice after reading The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  As I grew older, truths that were taught me and that I learned from reading the Bible were beautifully illustrated for me in literature, and echoes of the Great Story called to me from everywhere.

I saw Sydney Carton put his hope in the resurrection in A Tale of Two Cities and the devastating effects of revenge in The Count of Monte Cristo.  Mr. Darcy saved Elizabeth from her wretched family inheritance, Rhett really knew what Scarlett needed, and Edward protects Bella from danger.  My heart soared watching Aragorn storm the gates of Mordor and made me think of the return of the King.  

Of course everything we read has to be sifted through the grid of a Biblical worldview, and we embrace what is good and reject what is not based on truth.  This isn't really a blog post about that, but just thoughts on the power of stories and good story-telling to stir up our hearts toward good.  There is so much to be learned and a world of pleasure to enjoy. is very well worthwhile to be tormented for two or three years of one's life, for the sake of being able to read all the rest of it.
- Jane Austen -


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  2. I found your comments the other night to be very helpful about having a Christian "grid" through which we see and read things. We should practice Paul's charge to "examine all things carefully; hold fast to that which is good" (1 Thess 5:21). Everything we see and read has elements that need to be discarded as the byproduct of a fallen world. But there are redeemed elements as well. It is wise to shield our children from as much as we can until they too have a Christian grid through which they can evaluate what they read and see, holding to the good and rejecting the bad. I think that is very helpful, and I enjoyed our conversation about this.


  3. And I enjoyed your blog about this Lynn ~ and your comment KJ ~thanks for both! And of course the pics of those beautiful children! Oh my goodness they are SO beautiful and precious little people!!! Love to you all!