Sunday, June 14, 2009

Out for a while

I am out of the country until the end of June. Blogs will resume then.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Who knows where this is from?

"...don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to such a pass that he cannot distinguish truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceaces to love, and in order to occupy and distract himself without love he gives way to passion and coarse pleasures, and sinks to bestiality in his vices, all from contiueal lying to other men and to himself."

This is a quote from Elder Zossina in the book???

Quite a powerful and accurate description of the path that leads towards darkeness. Hmmm

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I love books

The writer Umberto Eco is the owner of a large personal library (containing thirty thousand books), and separates visitors into two categories:
…those who react with "Wow! Signore professore dottore Eco, what a library you have! How many of these books have you read?"
…and the others -- a very small minority -- who get the point that a private library is not an ego-boosting appendage but a research tool….

Read books are far less valuable than unread ones. The library should contain as much of what you do not know as your financial means allows you to put there. You will accumulate more knowledge and more books as you grow older, and the growing number of unread books on the shelves will look at you menacingly. Indeed, the more you know, the larger the rows of unread books. Let us call this collection of unread books an anti-library. (From the introduction to “The Black Swan,” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Life is a gift

I am reminded again today that life is a gift, and that we often take it for granted. Things like: taking your children to school, kissing your wife goodbye, eating lunch with a friend, having a place to work at...even hearing the rain pound on the roof last night, are all gifts from God.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that God is present in the midst of all these things, and most of the time God gives us room to recognize his presence or to not recognize him. But, one things is for sure, life is a gift and God is present. Today, I invite you to look at it as the fathomless mystery life is and to look for God for in the moments of your day.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Indelible Ink, pt. 2

Last night, I read another chapter of Indelible Ink. This chapter was written by Charles Colson, special counsel to President Nixon, who spent time in prison and became a Christian and started Prison Fellowship.

Colson top three books that have shaped his faith are:
"Mere Christianity" by C.S. Lewis (who knows what the C. and the S. stand for?)
"Confessions" and "The City of God" by Augustine of Hippo (also known as St. Augustine)
"How should we then live?" by Francis Schaeffer

I find it very interesting to read about how books impact and shape people's lives. What books have shaped your life? If you haven't developed your own list, maybe you should.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Reading "Indelible Ink"

Yesterday, I was talking to a friend a mine, I'll call him Big C, and he asked me if I had started reading this book, Indelible Ink. I hadn't, so last night I read a chapter. Indelible Ink is a book where 22 Christian Leaders discuss books that have shaped their faith.

Last night, I read Calvin Miller's chapter. In it, he shares his top three: the complete works of Shakespeare, the complete works of T.S. Elliot, and Silence by Shusako Endo. Endo's book is a story of Martyrs in the Samurai Era of Japan. I am going to have to pick this one up. Miller said "The power of Jesuit believers captured my soul as no other novel has ever done." (Reminds me of the movie, The Mission)

Here's another thing that struck me, Miller says that over the last 50 years he has read 100-200 books a year or about 7000 books. I thought I was doing well with 10-15 a year. For some, Miller's avid reading can be disempowering, but for me, it increases my motivation to read more and watch TV less. Because, as Miller says books have the power to confront us, change us and make us wise.