A huge thank you to everyone who has blessed me these past four years. The friendships I've made and people I've had the opportunity to talk to have been nothing short of amazing. I'm currently in the very early stages of packing. By that I mean I haven't started. I haven't been on in a while so let me tell you what I've done this summer. Nicky and I have been going crazy on our summer bucket list. You can follow that on www.vimeo.com/channels/coreyandnicky. I've also been reading a lot lately. I went through the Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis, Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven, but Nobody Wants to Die by David Crowder and Mike Hogan, Fame is Infamy by Andrew Schwab, and The Problem of Pain by CS Lewis.
I'm telling you all these are life-changing reads.
Here are some of my thoughts on each book:
The Screwtape Letters: Wow what a concept. Looking at temptation by a demon's point of view with God seen as the enemy. This book takes you through your daily life and exposes so much of it as sinful and exactly what Satan wants. Lewis is a tough read sometimes though and it always takes a little longer to get through his books but it's definitely worthwhile.
Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven, but Nobody Wants to Die: Well Mr. Crowder and Mr. Hogan, you've convinced me to respect bluegrass. This book has two main goals. It takes you through dealing with death as well as seeing music as an outlet for pain. One of my favorite passages in this book is when David goes over the concept of the Jewish Halla. The Halla is a group of Psalms that is sang during the passover celebration. So the point is; If the Bible is truly 100% God breathed, and Jesus was fully man and fully divine, then God essentially wrote a song for himself, knowing how powerful and meaningful music is to mankind. Wow. Even Jesus needed music sometimes.
Fame is Infamy: I flew through this one. Andrew Scwab, singer of hardcore band Project 86, talks about societies constant need for fame. He assures us that fame does not lead to happiness, and a lot of the time it leads to great struggles. He also looks us all in the eye as he talks about the problems pride and egotistical thoughts and behavior. All talent comes as a gift from God. Boasting about this talent is the same as boasting about the new scooter mommy got you. The only thing one can truly boast about is God himself. No one wants to be a spoiled brat.
The Problem of Pain: Lewis take two! This one gets you thinking. He describes the many reasons why pain is necessary in human life. First of all that pain is a result of free will, and God keeping it away from us is ulimately Him taking away that freedom. God can do all things, but not two contradicting things at the same time. Also God's goodness is so far beyond ours that we don't know truly what is best for us. Pain is the result of human behavior. When a kid throws a tamtrum, as I did, you have to eventually punish him somehow to get him to change. He also addresses that God will take simple evil and make complex good out of it. This does not excuse the evil however. Animal pain is another interesting topic addressed in this, basically saying how we have no idea. Lewis also brings us a different perspective on Heaven and Hell. Humans, according to the Bible, are made for Heaven. Hell is not a place where we were meant to be, although far too many end up there.
Today I picked up Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. I've heard good things so here we go.
So that's that. Move in a week. Readin' books. Bucket List. It's been an awesome summer.