I’m probably not alone in finding that summer allows a little more room for reading than the rest of the year.
I’m not sure all the reasons for that. Part of it is schedule – things tend to really ramp up in the Eldredge house and at Ransomed Heart September through May. But part of it is mindset. There just seems to be a little more breathing room as my soul rests a bit in summer. So, I’ve been reading and loving the opportunity to read. Here’s what I’ve been enjoying this past month:
Teewinot, climbing and contemplating the teton range by Jack Turner. Our family has been camping every summer in the Tetons since Luke was 3. (He just turned 15). This stunning part of God’s creation holds a special place in our hearts, and is always a rich part of our summer for seven days. Finally I found a book about life in the Tetons by someone who loves them as much as me. Turner is a old climbing guide, a naturalist, and a good writer.
The Solace of Open Spaces, by Gretel Ehrlich. Okay, the title alone is worth this little book. It’s true, we need open spaces in our lives. They do something deeply healing and orienting in our souls. (Abraham, Jacob, Elijah, John the Baptist, Jesus, the desrt fathers all knew this). Ehrlich came to Wyoming from New York to film a series for PBS on sheep herding. She ended up staying seven years. She, too, is a good writer. And I love Wyoming.
The Warriors, reflections on men in battle by J Glenn Gray. A remarkable book. Gray was drafted into WWII right after he received his doctorate in philosophy. He is a keenly perceptive, self-aware and reflective man, and he writes about both the power of war upon the soul of men, and its costs, with such grace and humility. I don’t agree with everything he says, but when he is right he is really right.
The Way of the Wild Heart. I know, I know, it might seem really weird that I’m reading my own book, and even more weird that I’m recommending it here by way of mention. But the truth is, I don’t usually read a book of my own once its finished, and it takes a few years to get enough distance to read them with appreciation. What I am struck by is that this is a really good book. I wish every man would read it.
Summer is winding to a close. I can feel the pressures of September crouching just ahead, ready to pounce. Sigh. I wish I could read like this all year.