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An “Epic” Review

I recently had the blessing to travel across the country for a good friend’s wedding. And by travel, I mean fly, because if you know me you know that I get carsick pretty easily so if it was a road-trip, the word “blessing” would probably have been dropped from that sentence.

Anywho…I always take a book with me when I fly and sometimes I actually read it and sometimes I just sit like a creeper and people-watch. But this time I brought a book I had actually been saving for my next flight, as weird as that sounds. It’s small, short, and even weirder for me, I have NO IDEA how I got it or it’s study guide! So while you may have been thinking I was being stuck up with my blog title, the title of the book is actually Epic, and I couldn’t resist. 🙂

I got through security for my flight pretty fast (because I’m a good rule-follower) and since it appeared that the people-watching chances were slim, I opened the book right up. Seriously guys, I hadn’t even read the back cover. I was going in blind on this one, which is really new for me. It’s by John Eldredge, who I don’t know much about, except he wrote Wild at Heart, which I’ve never read.

The very first line of the book hooked me because he referenced my favorite movie, Lord of the Rings. I was immediately intrigued. He also had a quote by G.K. Chesterton and I thought, “Gosh, he’s off to a great start!” The book is about telling the gospel with more of an “epic story” perspective. I’ve never read anything that referenced SO many well-known movies and books: Chronicles of Narnia, Little Women, Gladiator, Titanic, Apollo 13, Saving Private Ryan, The Odyssey, Stars Wars, and so many more. It was insane!

It was quite an interesting perspective and while I can’t say I agreed with all the theology (mainly the section on free will), he came at it from an angle that was really different from anything I’ve ever read.

But after a while I started to notice something. It wasn’t quite fitting anymore. Instead of trying to show how the gospel had similar themes to some of our movies, it seemed more like he was trying to make the gospel fit into the movies’ themes. I think he was letting his imagination run away a little bit.

Because while God’s story is incredible, amazing, and (I would even agree, epic,) it’s not one of our movies. It is written by a supreme Creator, not humans. And somehow comparing it to our flawed stories relentlessly gave it less meaning than reading it how it was actually written, in God’s own Words. 

 

 
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Posted by on October 25, 2018 in books

 

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Moving On

This will be the last post in the series The2016Story. Not because that Story has ended but because it is continuing. I will continue to update and write but 2016 is over and you are now caught up on it. I feel like I barely scratched the surface of everything that actually went on, but I did my best. Some things are just too difficult to write about.

It was the hardest year of my life but I actually think I am having more trouble now than all through the summer and fall of last year. I am struggling to move on. How do I adjust my life to this change? How can things ever go back to the way they were before? It reminds me of a part of one of my favorite movies (Lord of the Rings):

“How do you pick up the threads of an old life? How do you go on? In your heart, you begin to understand, there is no going back. There are some things that time cannot mend. Some hurts that go too deep, that have taken hold.”

Now, I believe that our God is able to heal those hurts but I don’t think my life will ever be the same again. In some aspects, that is a good thing. I don’t want to forget what God has taught me or how I’ve grown to rely on him and on others. But to be completely honest, some nights I lay and cry because I want my old life back. I want to go through a day without headaches, seizures, or pain. I want to be able to wake up in the morning and actually feel refreshed, ready to take on the day and serve Christ. I want to be able to do the things I could before and I wish that none of this had ever happened. Which reminds me of another Lord of the Rings quote:

“Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.
Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.”

It has been a constant prayer of mine that God would be glorified in my life no matter what happens. No matter what I’m going through, I want to love others, share the gospel, and see his Name lifted high. And that is my prayer for 2017.

(You are currently reading a post in a series called The2016Story. If you have jumped in in the middle and would like to start at the beginning, click HERE.)

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2017 in The2016Story

 

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Happy Hobbit Day!

Several years ago, I invented a holiday.  On September 22, I remembered that it was Frodo’s and Bilbo’s (from Lord of the Rings) birthday.  I then created Hobbit Day.  Or so I thought.  I later found out that the American Tolkien Society had already created it (in 1978!)  and Lord of the Rings fans from around the world celebrated it.  I was a little bummed that I didn’t really have the idea first but……

So, I know what you’re thinking…what a nerd!  I know, I know.  Hey, we all love Lord of the Rings here.  The little girls can’t wait until they are old enough to watch the trilogy.  Unfortunately for them, that won’t be for a while.  We usually watch the series at least once a year and it must be the extended version, none of that cheap theatrical stuff.  We also quote the movie often.  Probably the most-quoted movie line at my house is, “But it is not this day!”  We can’t get through two days without spouting this line for some reason.  I do have a few pet peeves about those movies though- like how they completely changed Aragorn’s outlook on being king, how they added some non-existent romance, and don’t even get me started on how they ruined Faramir!

I love the books and movies for several reasons.  The biggest reason is the conflict between good and evil.  I love how there aren’t really any in-between characters- you are either good or evil but you can’t be both.  I also love Sam.  I love his loyalty, his courage, and his cheerfulness.  He and Legolas are my favorite characters.

So, whether or not you think me a complete nerd or not, I wish you a very happy Hobbit Day and I leave you with my two favorite quotes from the said movies.

(Sam) I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something. (Frodo)What are we holding onto Sam?(Sam) That there’s some good in this world and its  worth fighting for.

(Gandalf,  in reply to Frodo wishing that the ring had never come to him)  So do all who live to see such times, but it is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time given to us.

 
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Posted by on September 22, 2012 in about me, family, Lord of the Rings

 

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