Raise your hand if you love to read.
Then you should celebrate World Book Day next Tuesday!
While the obvious way to celebrate World Book Day is to read a book, I do have another option for my more artistic friends.
My mom bought me a “100 Books Bucket List Scratch-Off Poster” for Christmas. Since then, I have been listening to audiobooks like my life depended on it, and I have only listened to two books that were not on the poster: The Year of Less by Cait Flanders and Shouldn’t You Be in School by Lemony Snicket. In my opinion, those two books should have made the list, and a few other books should be removed from the poster.
On Saturday I share three simple things that brought me happiness during the week. Please feel free to share your own simple joys in the comments section!
Maybe I should quit claiming that I share my simple joys every week.
Walking with friends at the outdoor mall. Walking with Mom in Old Salem. Walking with an audiobook around the neighborhood. I just love the sunshine and movement!
Every Saturday I share three simple things that brought me happiness during the week. These posts may grow or change as time passes. Please feel free to share your own simple joys in the comments section!
1. Village Juice Company and the friends who love it as much as I do
2. The Chronicles of Narnia
Who would have thought that I would get to read children’s fiction in grad school?! Here’s one of my new favorite quotes from The Magician’s Nephew:
“‘But do not be cast down,’ said Aslan, still speaking to the Beasts. ‘Evil will come of that evil, but it is still a long way off, and I will see to it that the worst falls upon myself.”
3. Goggles and a new swimsuit
This week I learned that the right equipment can make all the difference.
Over the summer, I attempted to listen to the audiobook version of Vivian Apple at the End of the World by Katie Coyle. As I criss-crossed the state of Texas, I quickly lost track of Vivian and Harp’s whereabouts, and I abandoned the book until early October. Although I am only about halfway through the novel (and I probably won’t formally review it when I am done), the basic premise of the story has left my mind curious.
This is the summary from the book jacket:
Seventeen-year-old Vivian Apple never believed in the evangelical Church of America, unlike her recently devout parents. But when Vivian returns home the night after the supposed “Rapture,” all that’s left of her parents are two holes in the roof. Suddenly, she doesn’t know who or what to believe. With her best friend Harp and a mysterious ally, Peter, Vivian embarks on a desperate cross-country roadtrip through a paranoid and panic-stricken America to find answers. Because at the end of the world, Vivian Apple isn’t looking for a savior. She’s looking for the truth.
That last line haunts me…
Vivian Apple isn’t looking for a savior. She’s looking for the truth.
Not savior. Just truth.
Let me give some background information. This fictional book is in no way Christian nor does it reference true Christianity. In the novel, the “Evangelical Church of America” is essentially a cult started by a man named Frick who dreamed that God chose him to protect select individuals from the rapture and Apocalypse. Indeed, Vivian did not need that sort of deceitful “salvation.”
Nonetheless, it is easy to think that we don’t need a Savior, we just want the truth. Furthermore, we want OUR truth, the truth that works for us personally. That truth can be anything as long as it makes sense to us and meets our personal needs.
Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” – John 14:6
Jesus is the truth. John 14:6 does not say that He “could be” the truth or “might become” the truth or “was” the truth. He is the truth. That truth is not relative or changing.
So if Vivian Apple only needs the truth, she needs Jesus.
We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world. – I John 4:14
Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners – I Timothy 1:15
The truth is that Jesus is also our Savior. To believe the truth is to believe that He died for our sins, was buried, rose again, and is the Savior of the World. You cannot separate the fact that Jesus is truth from the fact that Jesus is Savior.
So if Vivian Apple needs the truth, Vivian Apple needs a Savior.
Everyone who loves reading has done it. We stay up well past the time that we should go to bed just so that we can enjoy one more chapter of our current book. Sometimes these books are stealthily hidden beneath blankets and read with flashlights so that parents will not know what we are reading.
This week, the American Library Association is honoring “banned books,” which are books that have been outlawed for various reasons including language, morality, religion, and illustrations. In my opinion, every book worth reading has been banned for some unnecessary reason. Also, banning books only serves to stimulate a child’s curiosity and build their desire to read the book.
Below are my favorite banned books, the reason that they were banned, and why I loved them.
A Light in the Attic, by Shel Silverstein – Silverstein tends to be sarcastic and sassy. One of his poems says, “If you have to dry the dishes, And you drop one on the floor, Maybe they won’t let you Dry the dishes anymore.” Parents saw this as promoting disrespect and disobedience. I happen to love Silverstien’s dry humor.