Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Confessions and Calvary Love

I have a confession to make: I'm a book thief. I feel like I've talked about this before on here. It's not that I think people won't notice that their books don't get returned to them. It's not that I forget. It's that I purposefully pilfer books for my own library and then shamelessly justify it to myself with a myriad of excuses. I'm just being honest. My dad once said that taking me to a book store was like taking an alcoholic to a bar. I'd like to say I'm not THAT bad, but I think he's probably right. I don't steal books from bookstores, though, just from unwitting family members and occasionally friends.

Anyway, one of the books I stole from my mother when I graduated from high school was her beat up copy of Amy Carmichael's If. Let me explain: in our house, Amy Carmichael was referred to as "Amy". My mom liked to pretend that "Amy" was a close family friend. Selections from "Amy" were shared and then discussed in depth at the breakfast table at least once a week. "Amy"'s books were placed on the bathroom bookshelf (yes, every family should have a bathroom bookshelf) so that time on the toilet was spent appropriately. "Amy" was our personal family joke, but once I finally matured enough to appreciate the depth of what she was writing about (instead of rolling my eyes and braiding the fringe on our table cloth), I realized there was no way I was heading off to college without at least a couple of her books tucked away in my backpack (the other book was called Rose from Brier and was an unbelievable help as I learned how to deal with consistent vascular migraines and depression). Both books are now parked on my bathroom bookshelf, and I regularly consult them for a few moments of encouragement and challenge.

If is a collection of thoughts on our response to the love of the Lord as exhibited on the cross of Calvary. There's a little introduction and a little conclusion, but most of the ninety page book consists of single statements full of thought-provoking challenge. The one that got me this week was "If by doing some work which the undiscerning consider 'not spiritual work' I can best help others, and I inwardly rebel, thinking it is the spiritual for which I crave, when in truth it is the interesting and exciting, then I know nothing of Calvary love." Ouch. And for the most part, that's my response to the whole book. But I am encouraged to know that as I pursue Christ more, I will begin to gain more of an understanding for the why behind the Cross, and He will continue transforming me into His image.

Hopefully He won't convict me of my book thievery...

1 comment:

  1. I forgive your thievery because I probably gave it to you anyway. And I'm thankful Amy is becoming your friend too and that her radical commitment to Christ is encouraging you to pursue him more each day. I love you lots!