Thursday, August 23, 2007
Friday, August 10, 2007
- Kara Schwab, in "Choose Joy"
"Choosing joy over bitterness doesn't mean slapping a silly grin on your face. And it's not about being bubbly, perky or giggly. Let's face it, sometimes happy people can be a bit annoying. Joy goes much deeper than any facial expression. And it's more intense and real than fleeting happiness. In his play Much Ado About Nothing, William Shakespeare understands this solemn quality of joy, writing, 'Silence is the perfectest herald of joy.' How perfectestly said.
"Author and teacher Gary Thomas raises the question that perhaps God is more concerned with our holiness than He is with our happiness. That the real purpose of the Christian life is to make us holy — not happy. The first time I heard this concept I was actually a little relieved. Personally, I'd rather not measure my life by its moments of happiness, but by knowing that the Lord will never give up on trying to make me holy. For I know that He who has begun a good work in me will complete it."
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
The full set can be viewed on my flickr site. I ended up with quite a few pics that I'm really happy with - some for their sentimental value, some for their artistic value. Enjoy!
Friday, August 03, 2007
I had found a copy of the British edition in a bookstore in Romania the day it was released around the world, and decided that would be my souvenir. I started reading it on the flight from Milan to Chicago, bonding with the college kid sitting next to me, who was fighting his own fatigue from a week-long soccer tour in an effort to finish book number 5 before we reached the States. As he read the climactic clash at the book's end, I smiled as he sat hunched over the book, quietly laughing and gasping in turn as the scene unfolded, occasionally turning to me to ask questions or discuss the significance of something that had just happened.
I made it about half-way through HP7 before we touched down at O'Hare, and continued to fill most spare moments of wakefulness with reading over the past few days. I read on and on, wanting to know how it all ends and yet not wanting it all to end. And then last night (or more accurately, early this morning), buoyed by some Diet Coke and more than a little adrenalin, I reached the satisfying conclusion. Well done, J.K. Rowling. Well done, Harry.
As I closed the book, my mind still whirring with how it all turned out, I found myself wanting to go back to the beginning and read the whole thing again, to catch and savor some of the elements I'm sure I missed or rushed through in my eagerness for the story to unfold. I will, however, save the rereading for a later time, because also released while I was out of the country was First Amongst Sequels, book number 5 in Jasper's Fforde's Thursday Next series, that I have been eagerly anticipating for quite some time. So, from an England full of wizards and spells I turn to an England full of literary detectives and narrative mayhem. Hurrah!