I have been recovering from a bad sore throat the last few days and am now finally feeling better. I mostly stayed home which sometimes can make life seem a bit melancholy and I'm finding that to be the case again. But I used the time of rest to read a couple of books and can heartily recommend them to you.
The first one was "The Blind Side" by Michael Lewis which is the story of Michael Oher and his rescue from poverty and rise to football stardom. It's been made into a movie that I'm sure most of you have seen and the movie is very good. But Hollywood always has to tweak things a bit to fit into a neat package of approximately 120 minutes and real life really doesn't cooperate very often. For me, the book got a bit tedious at times with football details, but they actually help set the stage for why he was so pursued as a player and the details were necessary. It was a refreshing reminder that sometimes the good guy wins and I'm looking forward to cheering for the Baltimore Ravens this fall and Michael Oher.
The book I read today was a much different story that is still waiting for the complete fulfillment of the happy ending.
I've written often about Steven and Mary Beth Chapman's journey in the last two years as they've struggled with the loss of five year old Maria Sue in a tragic accident. The material in the book wasn't really new to me because I've followed blogs, music, interviews, etc. along the way. But the added details and struggles of the entire family broke my heart all over again. It was a very courageous step for Mary Beth to take to relive not only the last two years, but go back and look at her whole life, and I believe God will use it to heal her in greater ways and bring glory to Himself even more.
Pain and suffering are universal conditions that all of humanity deals with at one time or another and sadly, it's something that some use as a reason to run from God. One last book by Randy Alcorn that I've begun reading addresses some of that and while not one to read quickly or lightly, I'm suspecting that it will be worth the journey.
All of this input in recent days, along with my life in general in the last several years, can be summed up by this quote from Randy Alcorn's book, "If God Is Good":
"We live between Genesis 3 and Revelation 20, between Eden and the New Earth. Things are not all right with the world....Adam and Eve's fall, Cain's murder of Abel, Noah's flood, the tower of Babel, the patriarch's sins, Job's tragedies, Egypt's oppression of Israel, David's psalms of lament, Israel's rebellion and exile, the suffering of the prophets, and the long, lonely wait for Messiah - it goes on relentlessly, so that when Jesus finally comes as the Lamb of God, He comes not a moment too soon. And when He returns as the Lion, again it will be not a moment too soon - nor too late."
That's where I find myself these days - living in between - after evil has entered the world and before God makes all things right. I don't know exactly what that will look like for me or my family, but I think I'm ready for the adventure to continue.