Summer has arrived. It’s been really hot around here and boy does that make me want to get cozy indoors with a book! Also, the rain nearly every day is forcing me to stay indoors. In addition to starting a personal study of the book of Romans in June, I concluded two of the books I’ve been going through, started one new book and purchased several new ones.
My journey through Highbury came to an end this month. It was a pleasant trip and I left everyone happily married to the appropriate person, which is certainly the beauty of a novel like Emma.
Holding Hands, Holding Hearts by Richard and Sharon Phillips
This book seeks to give advice on dating from a biblical perspective. It begins by looking at God’s design for marriage, how it has been permanently marred by human sin, and how submission to Jesus Christ can restore such relationships (as much as possible). Richard and Sharon Phillips also extrapolate from biblical passages about marriage to provide wise counsel on many issues including how to date, what characteristics to look for in someone you’re dating, why to date, etc.
They note that “God’s regular intention for mankind is marriage” and acknowledge that most of us will have to date to get to that point. I agree that most of us are not called to singleness so we should be married. They chastise men in particular for remaining single and developing selfish “and otherwise sinful habits.” While I’ve certainly seen this happen, I don’t think it is exclusively a male problem. I think this selfishness can take root easily the longer one remains single. In fact, it’s a subject I’ve been meaning to write on for several months. It is in my backlog of story ideas…
I appreciated that they acknowledged that for many of us singleness a trial, because it is. Even with a full life and great friends it can be difficult and painful at times to be single. However, they also remind single individuals that marriage is also a challenging situation “as two sinners seek to live in harmony without killing each other.” Amen.
Having lately read theological books I knew I disagreed with, I wanted one that might strengthen and equip me instead. So I started R.W. Glenn’s book about the beatitudes last weekend while I was out to breakfast. Because I’ve heard him preach in person I can actually hear his tone of voice as I read which makes it more amusing.
I also happened to visit Barnes & Noble recently which is positively dangerous for me. I managed to escape with only three, heavily discounted novels: The Kitchen Boy, Mr. Rosenblum Dreams in English and Blood of the Prodigal. However, I read the introductions to A Curious Man: The Strange and Brilliant Life of Robert Believe it Or Not Ripley! and Call the Midwife and will be adding those to my collection someday soon. I also added Like Father, Like Sons and Saved without a Doubt to my Kindle collection.