Monday, September 24, 2007

Slowing down; books I'm into

Whew. This month has been busier than I wanted. I usually work 3 days a week but for the past 3 weeks I worked full time (2 weeks of ward attending on the VA neurology service, and one week of work meetings and recertifying ACLS (Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support)). I'm hoping for things to settle down now, and looking forward to enjoying the fall weather. This morning I was surprised by the first new SNOW on the tops of the mountains near our house - a rude awakening! The leaves are barely starting to turn color - I hope the valley floor doesn't see snow for another month yet. I don't think Sam has a winter coat that fits!

Speaking of Sam, he has had a runny nose and 2 white sores on his tongue for the past 2 days. I wonder what this is, and I hope I don't get it. Since he has sneezed directly into my face a few times, I'm sure I'm exposed. Oh goody.

Despite my schedule I've managed to stick my nose into a few good books lately. I've read one chapter of The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning, and I can see a kindred spirit in him already. I felt like I could close my eyes and point to the page, and almost anywhere in the chapter I'd land on a good quote. I remember laughing out loud at one description of someone whose "cheese is falling off his cracker." Wish I had a sample for the blog, but I don't have the book with me. I'll work on that.

I also started reading Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith by Rob Bell. I think anytime someone starts talking about "repainting" or "re-visioning" or "re-thinking" some aspect of Christianity, it makes some people really nervous and threatened. There is a Wikipedia page about Bell in which some of his critics call him various names, like "relativist" and "liberal" and the like, but I find it interesting they are calling him these names rather than pointing out flaws in his thinking or inconsistencies in his positions. If they want liberal, they should read something by John Shelby Spong - perhaps "Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism", a book whose title I really love (haven't actually read the book though). Bell is pretty moderate, if you ask me. It seems he is just out there saying what a lot of us(maybe most) have been thinking, and is trying to swing the pendulum from way over on the "orthodoxy (right doctrine)" side, to a balance between orthodoxy and orthopraxis (right living). I think it's a healthy change. I bet I'd enjoy going to Mars Hill, the church where he is a pastor. But alas, I haven't found a Rob Bell or a Mars Hill in Utah yet.

Other books to consider, when there is time - Reading the Bible Again for the First Time, by Marcus Borg - anyone out there familiar with this author?


The Kalahari Typing School for Men - by Alexander McCall Smith - I cannot say enough how much I have enjoyed this whole series!

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