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What Do You Like to Read?

11 Feb

I love to read books that give me a glimpse into the hearts of people living in different times and cultures.  I feel like I’m getting a history or poly sci lesson minus the boring stuff.  Martin Cruz Smith is a master of this kind of writing.  Typically he writes about post-communist Russia.  But in the novel December 6 his setting is Pre-WWII Japan in the days before the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  The protagonist is Harry Niles.  Born in Japan to American missionary parents, Harry is American in fact, but Japanese in soul and spirit.  To the Japanese, though, he will only ever be a gaijin, a foreigner.  Here’s one of my favorite passages:

Gaijin were freaks, and Harry’s parents were the biggest freaks of all.  The pair of them preaching the gospel on a street corner was almost mortally embarrassing to Harry.  First was the presumption of preaching at all before being asked.  Second was his father’s total inability to speak Japanese.  Third was his mother’s partial Japanese.  Fourth was the fact that she spoke not women’s but men’s Japanese, full of bluster no decent woman would use.  Fifth was the way she stood beside her husband instead of behind him.  Sixth was their mysterious ignorance about how much and to whom to bow.  Seventh was their loudness.  Eight was their clumsiness.  Ninth was their color.  Tenth was their size.  Those were the Ten Sins of Gaijin, and every day Roger and Harriet Niles were guilty of each one.

–Martin Cruz Smith, December 6 ©2002 by Titanic Productions, ©2003 Simon & Schuster.

This has nothing to do with being single, but the book is marginally related to missions work, and since I will be taking my first missions trip soon, and since good writing is always relevant, December 6 has earned a post.

Happy Friday.


What Will The New Year Bring?

7 Jan
Endless love
Image by millzero via Flickr

First, I was going to do a 2008 Year in Review-type post, but at this point it’s feeling stale, so I’ll recap here briefly:

In January I note that WB, for the first time in our history, did not send a gift, or even a card, to me for Christmas/New Years.  In March I practice getting over WB by letting myself love him without expectation.  In April I have a major breakthrough with the father-love issue.  In May I join eharmony.  In June I read a book that shined a great light on my fear of commitment.  Another major breakthrough followed.  In July I was totally infatuated with Mr. X.  In August Mr. X dumped me and my heart was broken.  In September WB stunned me by announcing his impending wedding.  And when I  panicked over not having a date, wonderful Chris waltzed into my life.  In November, after the wedding, I stopped seeing Chris, mourned the loss of WB, and had the thought that Mr. X seemed selfish, inconsiderate, and cowardly in hindsight (read: compared to Chris).  Why, I wondered, did I let myself become infatuated with that kind of man?  In December, when I wondered if I’d ever meet a new person without going online, I met someone at church.  More importantly, most importantly, I resolve that pure honesty, and truth in the inner parts, is how I have to live going forward.

Looking back, I’m convinced that there is a plan and a process that I am living through (deal with baggage, be open to meeting men, let the past go, confront poor choices in men and glimpse the kind of love God has in store), and that I am well on my way towards finally, finally, being Not Single Anymore instead of Still Single.

Second, I wanted to tell you what happened with Chris that caused us to part.  It was sex. We had a falling out over the issue. You can imagine why. I wrote a long post that explores my state of mind in the weeks following our break up.  Stay tuned for the details.  As of this date, though, Chris and I are talking again.

Finally, before it happens, I want to go on record and say that I am on the verge of a major, life altering, paradigm shift.  I just know it.  Here’s where I’m coming from:  all last year I was in process; getting my heart and mind in fit shape to recognize and receive love, real love, when it comes along.  Now here I am at the beginning of a new year and a new decade waiting for the next thing relationship-wise.  On the 4th, completely coincidentally, I stumbled upon the news that the sequel to the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, which I ADORED, is being released on the 5th.  I was not really sure what kind of book the sequel is, but I love E. Gilbert’s writing so I ordered the book it on the spot.  The book arrived today, the 6th, one day after it was released.  It is the fastest book delivery that I have ever received, particularly as I did not request expedited shipping. The finding, ordering, and receipt of the book was so seamless and fast, that it feels almost like Someone Else wanted this book to come to me right now.  But why?  What is this book about?  It is about Marriage.  How E. Gilbert overcame her reluctance to commit and committed.  Married her man.  Indeed, the title is Committed.  This book is going to speak to me, and Light is going to flood my mind and heart.  And I am going to be that much closer to a committed relationship myself.  Just you wait and see.

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Do Something or Be Still?

26 Oct
Book, "Just Do Something: How to Make a Decision Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc.," by K. DeYoung.  Image via Amazon

Book, "Just Do Something: How to Make a Decision Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc.," by K. DeYoung. Image via Amazon

I’ve decided that I’m helpless.  I’m throwing myself on the mercy of God.

Are there single men out there, Christian men, who do not lie as a matter of habit?  Who do not seek to have sex with women who are not their wives?  Who go to church?

Since I have recently decided to stop actively looking to be found by my husband, and to rest, I thought it ironic that the next book in my Amazon queue to order was the one pictured.

Ha, ha, Lord.

TGIF. What Are You Doing Tonight?

18 Sep

Taraji8.21  I find myself headed to see the latest offering of Tyler Perry.  Yeah.  I know.  I said I don’t like his films at all.  But this movie got better reviews than the other movie options available tonight (go figure).  So I’ve given myself permission to go and possibly enjoy it.  I’ll let you know.



1.57  Well.  I loved the music, the vocals.  I laughed out loud.  I cried twice.  Dare I say it?  The movie was good.  I could wax on (the protagonist, April, was an older single woman after all), but I’ll simply say that my favorite line came at the end of the movie.  When April was faced with the truth about herself, she swallowed her pride and acknowledged, “I don’t know how to love the right way.  But I’d like to learn.  Will you teach me?”

I don’t know if I know how to love a man the right way.  But I, like April, am teachable.  And I’m willing to learn.

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Purity? Are We Going There?

1 Sep

I seem to be delaying talking about Purity, the second principle of  marrying well according to Boundless’ Girl’s Guide.  But discuss it we must!


What Do the Experts Know?

25 Aug

GirlsGuideWhat do the experts know?  Evidently a lot.

Reading Boundless’  mini-book, A Girl’s Guide to Marrying Well, blessed me so immensely that I think I need a series of posts to recount my reactions.