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Archive for January, 2009

You too?

I’d like some feedback please, just a minute or more from the dozens of you who stop by.

Many people feel intimidated by C. S. Lewis. A bunch of people confess (usually to my well-placed spies rather than to me) to feeling intimidated by ME as I talk about the man. You too?

Tell me about the experience of intimidation surrounding CSL. I know when I read a really carefully-researched book about him, I feel as though I’ve never had an original thought about the guy, and that I’ve been nothing but lazy in my avid pursuit of everything I can get my hands on. You too?

And then I open the pages, and geeeez…the guy drops so many literary names, I think I’ll never have time for one tenth of the BEST of it. You too?

I mean, I got a little game when it comes to this author, but I’m wondering why this intimidation keeps coming up, and if it’s common to those who read this. So, please, put on your boots and take some time to post a comment, on this or something even tangentially related, woncha? Oh, and sorry for the very inside lil pun in that last sentence. Gold star if you got it.

Besides, it helps me to frame up and to understand my own experience when I hear those of others.

You too?

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Dear Colleagues, Friends and Family,

I hold in my hot little hands the first copy of the long-awaited fruit of our labor. Mere Christians: Inspiring Stories of Encounters with C. S. Lewis has arrived at the publisher, who’s passed on one copy.

A thousand thanks to the many of you who contributed (or wanted to), listened to me rant and rave, prayed, asked, booked me to speak (or may want to), and encouraged me and Mary Anne as we made it to this day.

Those in the Chicagoland Area are more than welcome to join us for the book launch on Thursday, 12 February at the Marion E Wade Center on the campus of Wheaton College from 4-5 pm. Please contact the Wade at 630-752-5908 for more info.

If you want a copy of your own, you can find it on all of the book sites incl. Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mere-Christians-Inspiring-Stories-Encounters/dp/0801071844/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1232740462&sr=1-1

It ships 1 Feb (NINE DAYS!); I’m still finding out which retail outlet will carry it. Also, at least two Christian book clubs will release editions.

If you’d like to arrange a speaking engagement or book signing for groups of any size, please feel free to contact me at cslewisprofessor@gmail.com.

But I didn’t sit down to advertise–rather I wanted to share my excitement with you today and to offer my thanks for your enthusiasm and support. Huzzah!

Kindly,

Andrew

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So it happened again.  I sit there innocently enough in church, and when the sermon starts, my mind wanders to some related topic, and phrases kinda pop into my head and don’t leave.  Always obedient to the Muse, I take paper from the bulletin and start scribbling. I hope the preacher doesn’t mind; the sermon often lays down a bed of faithful words that gives irresistible rise to words of my own. I think of it as a kind of offering or surrender.

Not too long ago, I looked into the Psalms after a long night of trouble, wakefulness, and tears.  At church that morning, the Psalm portion also echoed the comfort I have found in that old Hebrew songbook.  And I kept thinking too about the sursum corda, that part of the service where we sing “Lift up your hearts to the Lord our God.”  It’s an act of will, of course, all this deliberate rejoicing that gives no quarter to however we may feel at the moment.

At the start of the sermon, the priest mentioned a hymn, “In Christ Alone.”  That was all it took.

He Hears Our Cries

Verse
Here I have wandered
Far from the Grace of God
Into the darkest
Night of my soul

And can You find me
Here where my feet have strayed
And somehow make me
Heart-safe and whole?

Chorus
He knows no darkness
He knows no night
He sees our sorrows
He hears our cries

We lift our hearts up
We lift our eyes
Strong now to save us
He hears our cries

Verse
So now I stumble
Seeking the Grace of God
Confess I cannot
Make my own way

Will You still help me
Though I keep falling down
Somehow restore me
Teach me to say

(Repeat Chorus)

Verse
So as You help us
Live in the Grace of God
So we will follow
So we shall stand

And as You love us
We will rejoice in You
We lay our lives down
Lift up our hands

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Oh, HELP!

My friend Steven and I have been searching for alternatives to this theme, but nothing looks so nice.  If you like doing such things, we’re in search of something with a variable width, 2 OR 3 columns, something that uses FAR less blank real estate on the sides (see the big margins here~~> and here <~~?), and one, ideally, that would let me customize the header to squeeze in more of this amazing picture (it’s portrait, not landscape, and comes from the Nature Preserve near Lewis’s home.  I snapped it at 6 am my first full day in England, after having spent the night in the Kilns, Lewis’s former home).

Ideas?  Suggestions?  HELP?!?

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In Matt. 18, Jesus said (essentially), “Unless you turn into a little child, you’ll never get where you really want to go.”  Lewis said that when he became a man, one of the childish things he put away was the fear of appearing very child-like.  Yes.  Exactly.  And so here’s  little poem from a while ago for you to chew on while I work on some new things.

Perhaps the point of fairy tales

Perhaps
the point of
fairy tales
is not so much
in lulling little
ones to sleep;

maybe these stories safely
sing our dreams until
they whisper us awake
to fill us
with such strength and hope
that, story-like
we open wide our pages and
our eyes until
we make these dreams
come true.

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Debuting Feb. 1, Mere Christians: Inspiring Stories of Encounters with C. S. Lewis gathers fifty-five accounts of Lewis’s profound influence.  Find it here, where you can See Inside.

You want Andrew to come to your church, school, or book group to talk about the book and the life and work of C. S. Lewis?  Contact him by clicking here.

And now back to your regularly scheduled day.

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Thank You Redux

A friend passed along this link. Yes, exactly. Perhaps you’ll want to take a little look and give it a small try:

http://www.worshiphousemedia.com/index.cfm?hndl=details&tab=MM&id=11695

You can also find a link over there on the sidebar~~~>

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