New round of books to recommend… I often get asked when in the world I find the time to read, and honestly, I just fit it in where and when I can — a few pages before bed, while I’m making dinner, in the early morning before the house is awake, and this summer I’ve done a lot of reading poolside. Generally, I’m a book in hand reader, but I read Humble Roots via the Kindle app on my phone and found that made it much more accessible. Reading something of substance instead of idly wasting time on my phone scrolling through random social media posts is something I want to be doing more of.
This book came on recommendation of a few people on Twitter and I have a feeling it will be one of my favorite reads of the year. It is a tragic, yet beautifully written chronicle following the stories of 3 African Americans who made the trek from the south to various parts of the United States in a period known as “The Great Migration.” It was a fascinating look at the history of why and how are cities are the way they are today. It changed the way I think about history, race, entitlement, and being black in America. I started reading this right before the Philando Castile verdict, and finished just before Charlottesville, so these issues have been often on my mind. I’m so grateful for Ms. Wilkerson’s thorough research and winsome writing voice on this topic. Her words opened my eyes to history in a new way, and I am all the richer for it. Heartily recommended.
“…perhaps the wrong questions have been asked about the Great Migration. Perhaps it is not a question of whether the migrants brought good or ill to the cities they fled to or were pushed or pulled to their destinations, but a question of how they summoned the courage to leave in the first place or how they found the will to press beyond the forces against them and the faith in a country that had rejected them for so long. By their actions, they did not dream the American Dream, they willed it into being by a definition of their own choosing. They did not ask to be accepted but declared themselves the Americans that perhaps few others recognized but that they had always been deep within their hearts.”
Sprinkled with agricultural sketches, beautiful quotes (hello wendell berry) and real life examples, this book was a refreshing take on the topic of humility. I don’t often read books over Kindle, but picked this one up at a bargain, and I’m so glad I had the chance to read it. I particularly appreciated her thoughts on ambition/dreams and how that plays out with our effort/trusting God. This was a wonderfully challenging, thought provoking read I’m going to be coming back to again and again.
“You are safe in the one who is truth Himself. And, when you are safe, suddenly you can open yourself up to the possibility that you might not know everything. You can open yourself up to the possibility that you never will. And then you can finally rest. Your mind can be at ease. You don’t have to worry and fret and stay up late searching out every possible detail before you make a decision. You don’t have to be an expert in medicine or education or theology. You don’t have to perfectly parse every scriptural text. you don’t have to point out where other people are wrong. When you are safe, you can stop fighting. Not because your own mind has made you safe, but because Jesus — the wisdom from above — has made you safe.”
After I finished A Shelter in the Time of Storm I was on the hunt for a devotional I would be able to use in the morning alongside my Bible reading. This little book fit the bill perfectly. A few paragraphs of thoughts from Joni on a verse from the Bible, finished with a short prayer. It has been just the bit of truth I need to start my day. Especially appreciated on the days when I have time for little else. This is from yesterday’s reading :
“There is power in God’s Word. When we search the Scriptures to find words to wrap around our disappointments, hurts, and worry, we are speaking God’s language. And God answers... Praying words of Scripture doesn’t mean all of our questions get answered, or that the pain immediately fades away. But God will respond to His Word. Instead of answers, we find the Answer. When we turn toward God in our heartache, He promises our anguished hearts will find Jesus. And He is the One who holds all the answers — and all the questions — in His hands.”
Yes, amen. What are you reading and loving?