In Feb – April 2017 I read some real crackers – including (finally) braving the Hunger Games. Read on for reviews of 8 great fiction books! (And see yesterday for great recommendations of Christian books). In no particular order, these were the eight fiction books I read:
Last year, I wrote a popular post entitled ‘When Your Holiday is Not Heaven.’ I stand by that, but this year, my holiday was actually pretty darn close to heaven, and here’s some reasons why:
We weren’t made to be the stars of our own shows, to think that we are the only people that exist; but to play out this thing called life with the rest of the humans on the planet. Not just the ones we like, the ones that are like us, or the ones who are nearby. We can’t let distance rob us of our humanity.
I took my lead from the wise and brave Abby Norman, and declared it ‘gentle January’. (I discovered that if you make it into a hashtag, then it becomes a ‘thing’). Here are the latest book and music recommendations plus ideas for Lent
But just because we understand where our pain comes from and how it has affected us, and even forgiven our offender, does not mean it disappears. This is the problem with self-help, visualization techniques, and daily affirmations; they are not bad per se, but we often try to apply them to deeper issues that will not have a magic wand waved over them.
I am wondering: do the possessions we own turn us into bloated Christians? I am slim in body, but obese in possessions – and I wonder what subtle effect this has on my spiritual life. Every time I look at a catalogue for present ideas for other people (which naturally turns into a list of things you might like for yourself), I feel like I am stuffing after-dinner mints into my face after a very large meal.
This group of women became the hands and feet of Jesus to me. I realized I didn’t have to try so hard. I didn’t have to strive. There was nothing for me to do because God had already done all the hard work. My life hadn’t been working because I was trying to do what only Jesus could have done.
Advent means ‘coming’. We tend to think of Advent as preparing for Christmas (ie preparing for remembering Jesus’ first coming), but traditionally the focus was on preparing our hearts for Jesus’ second coming.
Here are some ways you can mark Advent and prepare thoughtfully for Christmas: