21
Mar

Slow Reader Thursday: i am not but i know I AM

Gospel of John

On My Soapbox: WARNING! If e. e. cummings had had Microsoft Word and grammar check, he would have thought twice about using all lower case letters in his poetry. How do I know this? Just try to type the title of the book I’m reviewing this week without Word wanting to correct all your lowercase i’s! And since I have always enjoyed Mr. cummings’ poetry and his innovative use of lowercase, this especially annoys me. Okay, I’m getting down (off the soapbox) now.

I’m sure today’s author, Louie Giglio, was also annoyed as he desperately tried to type this title and his entire book, littered with the lowercase i. And he was trying to do this for one very good reason: to make the point that we are very, very small people in comparison to a very big God.

If you haven’t figured it out by now, I had difficulty reading this book at first. Your first clue is that I did not do this review one week ago, as scheduled. Have you ever felt that a book didn’t penetrate your soul the way it should have simply because you had finished reading a book that will never leave your soul??? That’s how I felt reading i am not but i know I AM.

Is Mr. Giglio a poor writer by comparison? No. His use of words is truly creative. Is his message to us trite and over-exposed? No. It’s rather fresh. Is it 1600 pages long, making it difficult to finish? No. Even with 3 very readable addenda, it’s a mere 166 pages long.

So, what was the problem? Me. I tried to read this book like I read every other book—in bits and pieces, around other tasks in my daily schedule and while multi-tasking. Now, this usually works for me very well. Not so with this book. This book demands serious reflective time and consuming it in rather large chunks, since the message slowly builds upon itself.

Because Mr. Giglio emphasizes that we should be servants first and think about ourselves last, I also felt that he writes quietly. No big applause or bravado with his writing (although he readily admits to succumbing to that, upon occasion), but simple, timeless truths about who we are not and who God is.

And despite my initial loathing of this book, page 134 reduced me to tears. Giglio states, “When I crumble under the pressure, I have lost the plot, declaring that the outcome of life rests squarely on my shoulders, not His.” Ouch. Yep, that would be me.

And I am taking something more (than this one quote) away from this book—the One-Word Bible Study method, in which Giglio meditates on only one word of a Bible verse each day. The first day he did this, the word to be pondered was “and.” Not exactly an exciting word to begin a Bible study, hunh? And yet, by merely thinking about “and” for one whole day, Giglio was given huge insights about God and his relationship to God. Similar things happened on subsequent days, even when the word was “the.” So, trust me, I am about to launch into some one-word Bible studying myself.

So, to read or not to read? That is the question. Yes, most definitely read it. Don’t let little me get in your way. But, do yourself a favor—read it when you have a serious chunk of time to devote to it, so that it can penetrate your soul the way God intended.

This entry was posted on Thursday, March 21st, 2013 at 6:55 am and is filed under God stuff, Slow Reader Friday. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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