I finished up reading Joshua at the beginning of February. Of course, I hadn’t done much study on him before, so I loved to learn from Joshua’s integrity. My favorite verse in the book, though, is
Not one word of all the good promises that the LORD had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass. -Joshua 21:45
Joshua’s themes include war, fighting, orders, courage – and rest. Covenant. Not one word is untrue that He speaks.
4: Learning To Walk in The Dark by Barbara Brown Taylor.
Life changing. I don’t say that about books that I don’t even think about afterwards. But I can’t stop thinking about this book. I took pages and pages of notes. Barbara Brown Taylor isn’t afraid of the dark. She isn’t afraid of thinking thoughts that everyone around her wouldn’t agree with. She seeks to be right in doctrine, but she’s not afraid to test everything she hears. We know the One that separated the light from dark. Our personal experiences with the literal darkness is what makes it scary. We shouldn’t be afraid of not being able to sleep at night – what keeps us up tells us something about ourselves. We should take notice to what makes us thankful. We should not be afraid of silence. If you take Him with you, the Light will never really go out, anyway.
5: The Ink Dark Moon is love poems written by Ono no Komachi and Izumi Shikibu. I read this book in three, short sittings. I had never read poems in this way before – I had read poems on Pinterest or in school textbooks, but never like this. It was challenging, but mostly refreshing. It made me think. Poems leave room for the imagination. I think you need that kind of literature every once in awhile, especially if you like to write. Some you understand perfectly, and others you ponder and wonder what the author was going through. I didn’t even read the appendix, maybe someday, but I didn’t want to jade my view and interpretations of the mysterious poems. These words were one of my favorites… so simple, so sweet.
I think, “At least in my dreams
we’ll be able to meet.”
Moving my pillow
this way and that on the bed,
Completely unable to sleep.
Up next, Judges. My favorite verse in this book (or rather the one that spoke to me most) is in the middle of the journey – right in the middle of the fight. God’s people hadn’t won yet. But they were beginning again. Ready for Him to give their enemies into their hands.
But the people, the men of Israel, took courage, and again formed the battle line in the same place where they had formed it on the first day. -Judges 20:22
6. Spoken For by Robin Jones Gunn and Alyssa Joy Bethke. I read this book with my young girl friend Anna K. – we started after the first of the year, and had fun reading along together every Tuesday afternoon. Every chapter was about a different identity that we have in Christ: chosen, loved, pursued, covered. I had so much fun discussing all of the small group designed questions and memorizing Scriptures we found together. I think identity in Christ is something you should never stop being reminded of. Forgetfulness of who we are leads to habitual sin.
Here’s to embracing who we are, learning to walk in the dark, and not being afraid of twisting and turning in questions. Fight for silence. Fight – first, just show up – like you did the day before.