Monday, March 02, 2009

February 2009 Reading List

Anna's Books

Completed This Month:

  • A Return to Christian Culture by Richard S. Taylor - This was a book I picked to read and write a review of for my Theatre Ministry Administration class. It was written in 1973 as a plea for the Christian to develop a cultured lifestyle while not conforming to the pressures of an ungodly society. While emphasizing the need for Christians to be cultured in order to be able to relate society, Dr. Taylor also warns against allowing society to shape you.The book warns against two extremes: Christians who totally reject culture and live boring and dull lives that are out of touch and reality, and Christians who so try to fit in with the culture that they lose the lives of holiness that God has called them to. We read how being cultured in art, music, and literature can help one live better lives for God’s glory, but we also are warned that we must challenge the culture that we live in and strive to change it when it is contrary to God’s design.
  • Drama Ministry by Steve Pederson - This was another book on the list for Theatre Ministry Administration, and it gave advice about how one should start a drama ministry in a church, using for examples the successful drama ministry he started at Willow Creek Community Church. I found the book very interesting and insightful, and it gave a lot of exercises and tips that will be very useful. I put it on my "to-buy someday" list of books. =) Though I don't think I'd do everything exactly how this drama ministry does, it did get me thinking about what I could do one day.
  • Apples of Gold by Lisa Sanson - My dear friend Ella sent me this book for Valentine's Day, and I enjoyed reading it in about half an hour that day. It is a beautiful parable of purity that was encouraging to read on a day on which many people are enjoying time with their sweethearts. It is a book that is more for younger girls, but I very much enjoyed the story and the sweet reminder that guarding ones purity is definitely worth it.
  • Our Town by Thornton Wilder - I had never read this classic play, although I had seen a movie of it on TV a while back. It was going to be produced here at Belhaven in the spring, but the director couldn't do it, so the production was canceled. For stage makeup class, however, we had to do a makeup for a character from the play, so I read it and did my makeup as Mrs. Webb. It is a small-town story staged in an interesting way, with very little scenery and the "stage manager" as the narrator. The story, following Emily from her girlhood to marriage to death, shows the importance of not taking daily life or other people for granted.
  • As It Is In Heaven by Arlene Sutton - This is the play the theatre department here at Belhaven in producing this spring. I read it to see whether or not I wanted to audition. The story follows 9 women living in a Shaker community in 1838. The theology is really strange, with the women following a now dead woman named Mother Ann, who they believe was a second reincarnation of God. It deals with old tradition and new revelations. Because of the strange theology, the fact that I didn't want to quit orchestra (the next concert is the same evening as one of the shows), and the fact that I'm not sure I'd have time for rehearsals every evening plus homework and sleep, I've decided not to audition.
Currently Reading:

  • My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chamber
  • For the Love of God Volume 1: A daily companion for discovering the riches of God's Word by D.A. Carson
  • The Prodigal God by Tim Keller

Miriam's Books

Completed This Month:
  • A Chance To Die: The Life and Legacy of Amy Carmichael by Elisabeth Elliot - This was a fascinating book! I've always been inspired by Amy Carmichael, but reading this made me even more amazed at the work she did for God.
  • Dominion by Randy Alcorn - Last month I read the first and third in this series and then Mother got the second, so I went backwards. This is the longest and, perhaps, the hardest to get into at first, but the story grew on me just like it did the first time I read it. Dealing with the touchy subject of racism, this book is very well written.
  • Ninth Witness by Brock and Bodie Thoene - I have really enjoyed reading these books as they've come out. The ninth installment in the A.D. Chronicles takes us back to when Jesus was twelve and is being taken to Jerusalem. In the style that the story is written, you can feel a sense of awe when Jesus is talking, you feel with Mary when she is panicking over her lost son, and the surprise of the rabbis when Jesus speaks to them with wisdom. I highly recommend this series.
  • A Twilight of Courage by Brock and Bodie Thoene - I was happy to find this book when I was browsing at our library. Though not written as part of a series, A Twilight of Courage picks up where Warsaw Requiem in the Zion Chronicles leaves us. Introducing new characters and continuing with old ones, the heartbreaking story of
  • Apples of Gold by Lisa Samson - I can't thank Ella enough for this wonderful little book. The story of two sisters who are so different, yet love each other very much. When they are called to the governor's house for an interview. They excitedly go and are told that they are being considered as housekeeper for the son of the governor's house. To find who would be better for this job, they are each given a beautiful, shiny red apple and told that they must keep in this pristine condition until the son comes. I'll keep the ending back, but this books tell an exquisite tale of purity and love.
  • Radical Womanhood by Carolyn McCulley - I can't say I enjoyed this book, but it was definitely a good read. I'm glad I read it. Ms. McCulley confronts face on the issue of feminism and all the problems that result from taking that stand. She is honest and forthright, having come from a stand for feminism to where she is now. I like it when an author gets right to the point, though. Radical Womanhood reaches out to single and married, older and younger, women. The message doesn't change. I do recommend this book.

Currently Reading:

Nothing at the moment... =)


Ella said...

Oh my goodnness!! After "Warsaw Requiem" there is "London Refrain" But I will have to find that one!!

I am so glad the two of you enjoyed the book. I figured you would!

Elijah Lofgren said...

Thanks for sharing what you are reading! :)

Anonymous said...

"Our Town" is such a good play! The local high school put it on last fall. Very well, I might add.