I purchased a phenomenal radio production of The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis at the Focus on the Family home office in Colorado Springs. (awesome by the way - aw - some!) We listened to it on the return drive. I have read the book through twice and then in bits and pieces now over and over for many years, it's one of only a few I keep by my bed. Hearing this production was like hearing it for the first time. I can't recommend it strongly enough.
It is a stunning radio production, as all FoF products are, but CS Lewis,
For now one piece echoing in my heart is a reference, almost in passing as so many of the gems are in his work, to a cloud that protects the "patient" from their work. Screwtape says that the cloud never leaves some people and so they can never get close enough to work. Okay, that is what I want. I want the presence of my Father to surround me that I would fear no evil.
I come away too knowing habits are the hub of a strong faith journey - everything else flows out from them. I feel strongly that emotional Christianity is no more lasting than a romantic interlude. Passions flame and burn out quickly for people - it's our nature. True love, is abiding. Love is an action. Love is in the habits and discipline of daily life. Love must withstand dry periods, frustrations, questions, and doubts. Love must remain steady it cannot ebb and flow the way the feeling of being "in love" does.
This is a serious stumbling point among Christians particularly those who find our Catholic worship boring. I enjoy praise and worship music immensely - I love how it feels, but I believe my obedience to teachings, to disciplines, to prayer, to Mass, to Adoration, those habits, whether they feel good to me or not, please Him so much more. Of course Life Teen and Charismatic Catholicism is breathtaking and really everything you could ever dream of worship being.
This past month has been an intense time of reflection. I see still much more sin in my life in need of pruning. I am utterly joyful when I consider this gift of self examination though. I am excited knowing that I am on the verge of winning battles with sin I have waged for decades.
As I continue my faith journey and my vocation of wife, mother and the goal of growing more like the woman of Proverbs 31, I promise to continue to share it with you openly.
I understand a bit better certain consequences wait for me. Being honest about my thoughts, my weakness, my own sin, is fuel for the fire for my enemies. I use that word for lack of a better one, all paranoia aside, I have enemies - if you are living a life of faith you should have some too.
Please, please read The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis. It's for seasoned Christians and it's a great read, it's a thinking book so go slowly- take it all in. Then put it down, and start again a few months later.
An Extraordinary Housewife should always be growing in her faith and knowledge. She should challenge herself and be willing to undergo intense self examination. ouch!
Blessings from back in the midwest (for now ;)