I Don’t Love Tina Fey and More Great Stuff to Read

First of all, does anyone have a catchy title for what is becoming a regular Friday feature of what I’m reading, listening to, and thinking about?

Secondly, the books: I’ve finally gotten into The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, by Rod Dreher. It’s a lovely book, though I found the first three chapters very slow going. And I’m really grateful for Andy Crouch’s Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power. I will blog at length about this one in a few weeks when I finish, but for now I will simply highly recommend it. I started listening to Bossypants by Tina Fey. It’s good. I don’t love it. I’m kind of wishing I’d just gone with another Anne Lamott but Audible books are so dang expensive I feel kind of stuck with this one. I suppose it might also tell you something about my sense of humor that I laugh more to Anne Lamott than Tina Fey. But there it is.

And third, a few articles:

“This school year, let’s fight for a kid’s right to lose.” http://ow.ly/pl8uO#LosingIsGoodForYou @nytimes #Character#Excellence

 http://ow.ly/pnM3r A Father’s Touching Confession to His Daughter with#DownSyndrome #Faith #Abortion

“Does our #culture have an unhealthy relationship with porn?” #DonJon#FantasyvsReality http://ow.ly/pnN6x@verilymag (Um, yes, and this article/review of Don Jon discusses that unhealthy relationship well)

Finally, an article from First Things on the “work-life” balance, especially for women, No Happy Harmony. I recommend reading the article in full, but here are two paragraphs from it that have certainly given me much food for thought as I try to work through being both a part-time writer and a part-time stay-at-home-mom:

Parenting requires ignoring for a time the individual quest for self-perfection and excellence and focusing instead on the needs of another person. This can be done only in what Pieper calls “leisure.” He does not mean inactivity or the absence of responsibility but the setting aside of goals, which is the condition of attention and activity that isn’t striving. In leisure we are available, disponible, which is why Pieper uses the term as a synonym for contemplation…

But, if I am right, these two endeavors require different orientations of the self, and we simply cannot approach marriage and family in the spirit of achievement at all. If we try to do so, we will find ourselves frustrated and conflicted. For well-behaved or smart children are not markers of our success; children are ends in themselves, to be loved and cared for as individuals. They need from us something other than our talents; they need us, full stop.

What have you been reading this week? 
About Amy Julia Becker

Amy Julia Becker writes and speaks about family, faith, disability, and culture. A graduate of Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary, she is the author of Penelope Ayers: A Memoir, A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House), and Why I Am Both Spiritual and Religious (Patheos Press).

Comments

  1. I enjoy your Friday installments! There’s so MUCH out there to read, listen to, and think about!

    • Lynn, Thank you! Always very helpful to know that people have an interest in what I’m reading, as it feels a bit narcissistic or something to throw it out there every week!

  2. I’m always looking for good reads, so I appreciate your updates each week. Maybe you could call it “My Friday RLT” (reads, listen, thoughts).

  3. LisaLaverty says:

    I appreciate your reading list too! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Mark Leach says:

    Amy Julia: I reviewed The Little Way of Ruthie Lemming. It’s a bit of an awesome meat sandwich, i.e. the middle is awesome, but sandwiched between a slow beginning and not-as-awesome end. But, man, the middle really got me.

    I got half-way through the Screwtape Letters before going to see a theatrical performance of it this past weekend. Well done, in that they made a drama out of a book that is written as letters from one demon to another. Not what you would think would translate well to the stage.

  5. I love reading your suggested books/articles.
    FYI – there is a interesting article in this weeks Time magazine by Dreher.


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