I have been given several “do overs” in my life recently. I love experiencing all of my new “Firsts”. Some of which include:
- Walking up a flight of stairs without becoming out of breath.
- Going for a jog in the park with my nine year old daughter.
- Fitting into a pair of pants that are two sizes smaller than I am accustomed to.
- Seeing sweat as my friend.
- Trying new foods and new seasonings.
- Reading an old book with “new eyes”.
There are many more “Firsts”, but right now, “Reading an old book with new eyes” comes to mind. About a year ago a friend of mine suggested I read a book called The Shack by William Paul Young. I read the book with great enthusiasm. It’s about a man whose youngest daughter was abducted by a serial killer, the great sadness that ensued and his encounter with God – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit . The first time I read the book I was in awe of how well written it was and how REAL this story was to me. Sure it’s fiction, but nevertheless, I got the feeling that is was an autobiography. I read that book twice back to back.
A month ago I was talking to a friend whose son is going through a hard time. He was looking for books to read. I had such fond memories of the first time I read The Shack that I recommended the book to her son. I was told he read it in one day. I was excited that he had enjoyed the book as much as I. This made my friend want to read the book too. I told her I would read it with her. This would be the third time for me to read the book and it was an entirely different experience.
A lot has happened in my life since the first two times of reading the book. For instance, Hurricane Sandy came and disrupted our lives and finances (See my blog from last November – Blessed! Abundantly Blessed.). A year later, I finally feel like my family has just recovered, but know there are countless others that have a long road ahead. I have had two family members diagnosed with terminal forms of cancer, my hours at work were reduced (thus reducing my income) and most importantly my health was so diminished that I found it of utmost urgency to lose my unhealthy weight. This time when I read The Shack there were so many areas of my life where Mack’s (the main character) experiences applied. His faith was tested numerous times, yet he was brought through it. He questioned God about all of the bad that happened, yet all of the good that came from the bad was revealed. There were times when he felt alone, yet it was made clear that he is never alone. This book made me look at my relationships with my friends and my family and evaluate where I can be a better person. Oh… and the third go round reading this book, I realized that I kept skimming over one very important detail in the entire book. Who knew that the entire time Mac was…. Well, I am not going to tell you. You just have to read the book.
Thankful for a second…and third… chance to experience something for the first time.
Sorry. I have no fancy scrapbook page to share with this blog. Just a little food for thought. What are you experiencing for the first time…again?