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Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith
on February 1, 2017
The last five years or so, maybe, I’ve made it a point to begin the year with a book by Anne Lamott, maybe it’s become like reading holiday stories around the holidays, something to hopefully remind me, us, of what is important other than the list of people to buy gifts for. Anne Lamott’s words remind me of what is important beyond all the hoopla of the daily ins and outs of living, traffic jams or last minute runs to the grocery store or even walking the dog. Dogs in my case. This year, more than maybe more than others, I really wanted to find a way to make sense of some things that really boggle my mind.
As I read through this, not unusual lately, politics were on my mind a lot – if you’ve read Anne Lamott’s books or even other reviews of almost any of her books, you’ll find at least one review, it seems, where someone complains about her political leanings. More to the point, her dislike of George W. Bush. So through much of this I was thinking both about how reviews for this must include some comments to the effect of how someone wishes she’d stop talking about GWB and all I kept thinking was how I figured Anne Lamott must be in a tizzy over the latest office holder.
So, yes, she does mention politics, ecology, the things you’d expect from her, how she tries, and sometimes fails, to incorporate her faith in her everyday life, her son. The rebellious teenage years that wear one down. It’s been ten years since she wrote Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith, she’s older, she talks about the toll of age on her body, the toll of being a parent, the indignation of getting a ticket for her dog being off-leash. Some are just rants, like she’s called you in a moment where she feels momentarily as though her world is coming apart, but needs to get this off her chest to feel so she can examine why she feels this way.
I seem to hang on to my hates because they help take my mind off the cracked reflection in the mirror.
It’s that willingness to be so raw and real but still charming in her awful behavior that keeps me reading her books every year. To share these stories, these feelings with the world, to transform that into something on the page that is sometimes amusing, but always true and honest and beautiful.
I am really looking forward to her soon-to-be-published Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy which is scheduled to be published in a few months.