No, I am not secreting off to indulge in novellas or any other kind of taboo genre that might leap to mind. I suppose I began this trail by doggedly slogging through Escape From Reason, one of the books assigned to my boys in their high school years which had always intrigued me. I then moved on to the still meaty but more manageable Modern Art and the Death of a Culture, and continued with a cultural assessment of the standing of the Church in UnChristian. Hold On To Your Kids impressed upon me even more the vital need for parents to know and hold their place in their children's lives. I have since pored over the fantastically current and honest The Narcissism Epidemic, and the lesser Generation Me.
If I can bring myself to do so, I have one more book to review and consider and that is How Evil Works. Lest you mistake me for a doom and gloom disaster-monger, let me share with you the closing paragraph on this book's jacket which invites me to enter within its pages.
Here's the good news: Once we really understand 'how evil works' - not just in the disasters and mega-crimes that dominate the headlines, but in our own lives as well - evil actually loses much of its power over us, and the way out becomes more clear. Thus, How Evil Works bears a powerful message of genuine hope.
I have conscientiously raised my children, and continue to do so, in a manner that seeks to turn their hearts and minds always to the truth of Christ in the midst of all circumstances. And yet I find that to be "in this world and not of it" is a challenge of the most daunting proportions today. It no longer matters to me to make the point of whether this battle is comparatively worse than at any other time in the history of mankind. Now is the day when my family is living, and the waves both subtle and crashing that wash over and toss us end over ear are relentless.
As I go through these books my head nods, and my stomach knots, and my Lord wakes me in the night hours to pray. It is tempting to become the proverbial ostrich with my head in the sand, but these moments are very like the point in John 6 when Jesus turns to His disciples and asks if they want to leave him as others are choosing to do. Like Peter, I can only respond,* “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”
So, why do I read these books, and why do I encourage you to as well? Because this is the day the Lord has given to us, and further, He has told us how we are to rightly respond. It is not as though nothing can touch us, because the insidious creep has it's way of slipping in through every crack and crevice. It is not to pretend that all is blissfully well, because we live in a world where truth and reality are not always self-evident and we need to be given eyes to see and discern. And it is not to become overwhelmed and to sink in despair, because we have One who knows and will equip us for the task if we go to Him.
**“Wake up, sleeper,rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil."
For your sake and for the sake of your children, wake up. Not all those who wander are lost.