January/February/March (Thus Far) In Review

What a crazy few months this New Year has brought. On a global scale we have dealt, well – are dealing with – the coronavirus. As followers of Jesus, who have been cured from the ultimate disease – sin – and trust in the sovereignty of God and in his promise of eternal life, we should be a calm presence. However, that does not mean we should neglect concern or caution. Frankly all this nonstop talk of illness has been working anxiously on my heart. Life in general has been rather overwhelming as of late my friends.

My family lost our grandpa about a month ago and this loss has burdened all our hearts. It is difficult to believe he is no longer here. I keep expecting to see him come in the back door of my grandma’s or walk in with her when she comes to visit.

Also, on a much much smaller scale, senior year is rough. Bittersweet is a better word. It’s a strange thing to have your feet planted in two worlds and to feel the new one become more and more tangible while the old is fading. It is joyful and full of anticipation yet it also hurts in many ways.

Books

I confess, I’ve been a slow reader this year. I’m four books behind on my Goodreads challenge. *sighs* That said, all the books I have read this year have been marvelous.

The Fellowship of the Ring: JRR Tolkien – Wow, wow, wow – I didn’t anticipate enjoying this as much as I did but Tolkien is an amazing writer. I can’t help but admire his extensive and detailed imagination. There’s much food for thought in the first installment of the trilogy alone and I know I’ll be revising it throughout my life.

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The Holiness of God: RC Sproul – Another one I will most definitely revisit time and time again. Sproul’s eloquent discussion of God’s holy character is deeply convicting. His holiness is unfathomable and we are fools to make light of it. This book encouraged/challenged my faith very much and also reminded me how truly amazing God’s grace is in light of his holiness.

“Yet as we grow in our knowledge fo Him, we gain a deeper love for His purity and sense a deeper dependence on His grace. We learn that He is altogether worthy of our adoration. The fruit of our growing love for Him is the increase of reverence for His name. We love Him because we see His loveliness. We adore Him now because we see His majesty. We obey him now because His Holy Spirit dwells within us.”

Jane Eyre: Charlotte Bronte – Although this is my third time reading it, Jane Eyre is incapable of becoming boring. In fact it grows more and more interesting with each reread. Bronte was a genius. I’m especially finding the symbols of fire/ice and the relationship between Jane’s moods and the woman in the attic interesting this go around. And my word – Rochester does toy with Jane.

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Questioning the Bible: Jonathon Morrow – I highly highly recommend this book to those searching for thoughtful and intellectual responses to attacks on the integrity of the Bible. Morrow explains these concisely and with as little confusion as possible. And again – what an encouragement this has been to my faith to know that we do not have faith blindly but that God has allowed such great evidence to us for his Word.

Movies

1917 – On top of the amazing cinematography and the effort put into the “one shot” look, the story line itself was gripping and a great insight into the world and emotions of the Western Front.

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The Young Victoria – I had a really strange desire to watch this movie that steadily grew over the last few weeks. And it was just as glorious and beautiful and sweet as I remembered it.

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Music

  • Drew Halcomb and the Neighbors – why did I never listen to more of their stuff?
  • The Lumineers
  • Much Shane and Shane (the Hymns live album??? – oh my word so good)
  • various soundtracks – as always
  • just wrapped up learning a Mendelssohn piece on the piano and am currently working on a Brahms piece

Adventures

  • A certain somebody from Georgia visited in January and that always entails much coffee, conversation, and exploring. This time we went down the the beach (he was amazed people still go in January) and drove up to the mountains later in the week. I think I discover more of California when he’s with me than I do on my own after living here all my life. (Also his name is Justin and yes it is official. No I’m not smiling right now please stop looking at me like that.)
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this is my proof he was here – also LOOK at that LATTE ART, someone please teach me
  • Both my last winter camp and winter formal happened over the last couple months and my goodness is it hard to believe life entails no more of those, well regularly at least.
  • I took my senior pictures this month too and the endings and beginnings are starting to feel so much more real.

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  • Also can being in traffic for two hours round trip when my drive should’ve been only half an hour count for this category? No I’m definitely not still salty about that. Definitely not.
  • My sister and I went to used bookstore earlier this month, and that, as always, was good. I came home four books the richer – Middlemarch (George Elliot), Orthodoxy (GK Chesterton), On Tyranny (Timothy Snyder), and Homecoming (Marilynne Robinson).

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Good Stuff

How Should Christians Respond to the Coronavirus – Mere Orthodoxy

A Letter and a Poem – The Rabbit Room

How (Not) To Respond to Change – The Gospel Coalition 

Progressive Christianity Even Shallower Than the Evangelical Faith I Left – The Gospel Coalition

CS Lewis on the Coronavirus – The Gospel Coalition

On another note, in light of the virus and other trials of this world, I found these lyrics extremely encouraging:

Our rest is in heaven, our rest is not here
Then why should we tremble when trials draw near?
Be still and remember the worst that can come
But shortens our journey and hastens us home

Christ our glory, Christ our hope
Christ our King forevermore
Be still and remember the worst that can come
But shortens our journey and hastens us home

No hours should be wasted on seeking our joy
And placing our hope in what will be destroyed
We look for a city that hands have not raised
We long for a country that sin has not stained

Christ our glory, Christ our hope
Christ our King forevermore
We look for a city that hands have not raised
We long for a country that sin has not stained

Though trouble and anguish increase all the more
They cannot compare to the glory in store
Come joy or come sorrow, whatever befalls
The light of the Savior will outshine them all

Christ our glory, Christ our hope, Christ our King forevermore
Christ our glory, Christ our hope, Christ our King forevermore
Christ our glory, Christ our hope, Christ our King forevermore
Come joy or come sorrow, whatever befalls
The light of the Savior will outshine them all

 

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