A Moving 10 Minutes…

The other day I was reading around the blog of Paul Young, the author of The Shack. I really enjoyed The Shack, in fact last year I thought it was the best fiction book I read all year. I didn’t even know Paul Young had a blog until recently. I was excited to learn that he did have one because I enjoy his mind and writing style so much; so I started reading as much as I could.

And then I happened upon this interpretive story he wrote…

It blew my mind!

It’s a story about the inner-thoughts of the disciple Andrew after someone comes up to him to ask him some clarifying questions about the parable of the Good Samaritan, which this person just heard Jesus tell to a group of people.

Depending on how fast you read, it will take up to 7 minutes. Please, take the time to read this and not just skim it. It’s so, so worth it. Powerful stuff.

What are your thoughts on our own inherent judgements about how fiction, truth and reality can all be one in the same?

Much love.


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  • That is beautiful. Truly beautiful. Thanks for sharing!

  • Andrew A

    Thanks, Andrew.

    That story itself has a lot of Truth in it.

  • ~steveT

    sitting here…again…with tears in my eyes….somehow…some way…..you often find a way to do that to me. or….is it the truth of Jesus that manages to make it’s way through that gets to me?

    this is how we have to help those around us…..to see Jesus. not a religious, ultra-spiritual version, but the real and life-changing Person we know Him to be. just like Paul Young does in this story through andrew’s eyes.

    i’ve got a great Paul Young story for you, btw……remind me to share it with you next time we talk. the guy is for real. and he gets it in one of the most remarkable ways i’ve ever heard.


  • Debbie Thurman

    Thanks for sharing that, Andrew — disciple and discipler. 🙂 I had visited Young’s blog last year after I read “The Shack.” Had forgotten about it. He does have a way with narrative, doesn’t he? And he drives the poignant truth home here. I also enjoyed “The Shack,” by the way.

  • Debbie Thurman

    I’m surprised this post didn’t generate a bit more discussion, especially given Andrew’s question at the end. It’s a valid question. As someone who has always been fond of literature, both for the pure enjoyment of it and for the way it slips universal truths into our consciousness, I appreciate the way Young wrote the piece Andrew refers to.

    Classic literature — I could name many works here — is timeless. Sadly, it is not nearly as appreciated as it once was. I even studied the Bible for its literary value during my pursuit of an English degree ( a long time ago!). When a people cease to read great works of literature, the result will be a dulled sense of truth and reality — a kind of illiteracy. When a great work of fiction resonates with us, is it not because it touches both the human and the divine in us?

    I also love this observation from an English professor friend of mine about the chief lesson in Jane Austen’s “Sense and Sensibility” (I love Austen): “Truth to the whole human condition lies in the middle” (i.e., neither all rational nor all emotional), “for we are beings of both ‘sense and sensibility.’”

    Think of how much the rational and the emotional clash in us 🙂

    On another note, I wish everyone a safe and joyful Thanksgiving, especially those who are traveling, as I will be later today.

    • I feel that the ’emotional’ is what either cements or repulses the mental aspects – therefore fiction, bringing forth those emotions from either direction, can become an actuality in how we ingrain certain things into our lives.

      • Debbie Thurman

        Yep, it’s a big factor.

  • Debbie Thurman

    P.S. Just after I posted that last comment, I discovered purely by serendipity (right, God?) this delightful guest blog entry at Christianity Today’s “her-meneutics” blog, by the very same professor I referenced above:


    Purely as a gift, because we are about to celebrate Thanksgiving and all that means, I offer it here. Some of you might want to keep Karen Prior’s name in mind, as she will have a wonderful nonfiction book out sometime in the future that is directly related to this topic Andrew raised. I’ve seen a sneak peek. It will be good.

    • Do you know what her book will be called? I would love to read it when it releases.

      • Debbie Thurman

        I’ll get an update from her and find out where the book is in the process and what it is called. The working title I saw may not be the final one. I know how that goes.