Monday, September 2, 2013

25 Books: Traveling Mercies (#10)

I just finished Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith by the wonderful Anne Lamott. It's the second book by her that was recommended to me. This one was wonderful and a book on faith that I needed to read.I realize that I am very, very behind on this series. But I'm taking it "Bird by Bird" as Anne Lamott would say.

Some background on my faith. I'm Catholic and I go to Mass probably 85% of the days that I'm required to go.  I don't necessarily agree with everything the Catholic Church does or says, but I've stuck around. I find peace in the ritual. I think the Beatitudes are forgotten about too often. I get upset when people criticize the entirety of the Catholic Church without really looking at all the good things that it has done. Living at St. Johns and St. Bens were some of the most spiritually fulfilling years of my life. I don't always like dogma, but I appreciate the community.  I digress...

Anne Lamott chronicles a lot of her struggles in this book, which include drug abuse, alcoholism, and lots of other painful things. Yet, she found pieces of faith that resonated with her.

I loved a phrase that she uses in the book, "dusty little red-wagon miracles." Miracles are not usually delivered in beams of light from the sky. They are sometimes sitting in your garage piled a midst junk and dirt and things you haven't used in years. I tend to forget that.

Lamott also used a poem from Langston Hughes that I loved:

“Gather out of star-dust,
And splinters of hail,
One handful of dream-dust,
Not for sale.”

I'm not perfect. I screw up, but I do believe that good things are out there. We just can't expect them to be delivered on a silver platter.

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