June 28, 2011

Burning and Sinking

Dear Readers,
To both boost my inspiration for writing, and simply receive pleasure, I have been reading and just last night finished a book by Shannon Hale called 'Enna Burning'. I found much of it agonizingly predictable --- you know, when you know almost everything that is going to happen before it does --- but every once in awhile, the story did take me pleasantly by surprise, and it had the same brilliant, magical flavor of The Goose Girl (also written by Shannon and the book preceding Enna Burning in the series).

The Goose Girl is a favorite of mine; the metaphors and similes and overall beautiful way it is written captivate me as much as the intricate story itself. I have officially read it four times, and my mother sweetly bought it for me some years ago so I can enjoy it as often as I like. Since I loved it so much, I was determined to try the following book, Enna Burning, and see if it was just as enchanting. I must admit, although it was extremely predictable, it was beautiful, and the way Shannon made something as impossible as mentally controlling fire so perfectly believable definitely intrigued me.

I found that while I was reading my Bible yesterday I came across a verse that seemed to fit perfectly with the tale of Enna Burning. It was Proverbs 27:6

"Faithful are the wounds of a friend,
But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy."

(I still am often fascinated and delighted by how the Bible applies to every single part of life!) Although some of the choices the main character made were indeed aggravating, I remembered that I have not made every choice that I know was right --- that I, too, gave in to the temptation that haunted me... more than once.

I believe I owe it to my dear teacher of  Literature Class for giving me the ability to read even secular novels  with a guarded heart (I am very selective and cautious about the kinds of things I let enter my mind) to gain shards of wisdom; to take the mysteries of fiction and learn from them. 
What I learned from Enna Burning is to listen to good advice from others, especially when you are beginning to think that no one else understands how you feel. And I learned that thinking too much about oneself leads to making grave mistakes, but considering others first --- and of course, considering all of the consequences of our choices before making any rash decisions, and then also seeking wise counsel  from others --- is the best way to go about every action. 
Also, I learned that thinking that because you have seen others make mistakes, it means you will not also fall into temptation, is very poor thinking indeed; relying on your own strength and your strength alone is foolish. 
And of course, as a Christian, I have learned that forgetting to look to the Lord for all my needs and instead looking at my weak self in my helpless estate will cause me to sink, as did Peter the moment he looked away from Christ. This is why my favorite song is In Christ Alone, because He is all I need and desire. And why my favorite encouraging devotion by Spurgeon is 'Looking unto Jesus', which is in fact, today's morning devotion!

'Who can say, “I have cleansed my heart, 
I am pure from my sin”?'
Proverbs 20:9

Personally, I think it is precious and beautiful to know that I cannot find even one thing in and of myself to be made whole and complete, but only Christ's love can fill up mine emptiness, and only He can grant me the purity I thirst for. 

May you, also, find Christ to be your All-in-All, and only trust Him.

God bless ♥

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