…It sounds like the start of a bawdy joke. But honestly the only bar in this story is the one that has been raised, not one that purveys drinks.
Some housekeeping notes to start: I don’t tend to write extensively about my spirituality. I find spirituality to be a sensitive topic, and while I certainly don’t shy away from it in posts that deal with difficult topics, I don’t tend to try and impart my personal spirituality directly to others. There’s a basic reason for this, which is that I often feel like the least-qualified person to write ABOUT spirituality specifically. When I have tried to write specifically about spirituality, it often ends up feeling very flat to me.
This is why I was surprised recently to be invited to a writing group being put together by a pastor in Portland that I knew as a teenager and have interacted with (largely via Facebook) over the years since then. Pastor Marc has gathered such an interesting group of people that I couldn’t help but try to join in, as much to be a part of their conversation as for any specific insight I have to offer.
This week’s writing assignment is based on a sermon that Marc gave recently. The entire sermon is available here on youtube. The topic is actually something that I have always had an opinion on, and though I’m a couple of days late, this was a pretty easy topic to tackle. Marc’s topic, and the topic at the heart of this blog post, is the role of women in spiritual leadership.
One man’s opinion about women leading spiritually after the link…
This morning at 2:36 am (which also counts as “last night” in my world) I read the last page of my first book of 2011 and closed the cover. I don’t think I’ve actively stopped thinking about Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo since then. What I’m about to say will come as no surprise to about 90% of the people who’ve read this book, and that number totals in the many millions: I deeply loved it, and I found it deeply challenging.
As I really can’t say anything that hundreds (if not tens of thousands) of reviewers haven’t already said, I’ll try to explain why I think I initially felt the way I did, and and ultimately how I continue to feel now. Stated simply, I think it’s highly unlikely, no matter how hard I try, that I will read a better book this year; which is an almost depressing thing to realize midway through January.
A spoiler-free review and literary comparisons…
…to Oregon Sunshine. She turns thirty-something-young years old today. It generally sucks to have a birthday so close to a major gift holiday, as everyone just did the whole “I bought you stuff” thing and merriment fatigue seems to set in…
But not this year! We’ve got fun things on tap, her favorite dinner on the menu, and she’s planning a day-long horse movie marathon with the girls (and Dude if they can drag him away from the computer).
So to her I say, “I wish you a wonderful, peaceful, restful, and enjoyable birthday. Now sit back, relax, and leave the rest of the day to us.”
I love you, you deserve a day off your feet and not worrying about anything other than what fun thing to do next.