Wednesday, April 07, 2010


A Severe Mercy-Sheldon Vanauken “Van” #6


Hands-down, this is the best book I have read in a long time. It had the perfect balance of being genuinely enjoyable and thought-provoking at the same time. The author, Van, writes in a novel style as he shares the story of him and his wife while weaving in their relationship to C.S. Lewis including letters by Lewis’ hand. I think what I loved the most about this book was the way Van and his wife Davy work to build a love that lasts - a passion that they have long before they become followers of Jesus Christ. They go through the process of building what they call “The Shining Barrier” - which meant to them all the ways they planned to grow the most powerful love possible. I love this quote...”If one of us likes anything, there must be something to like in it-and the other one must find it. Every single thing that either of us likes. That way we shall create a thousand strands, great and small, that will link us together. Then we shall be so close that it would be impossible-unthinkable-for either of us to suppose that we could ever recreate such a closeness with anyone else. And our trust in each other will not only be based on love and loyalty but on the fact of a thousand sharings-a thousand strands twisted into something unbreakable.”:


It was also great to read Lewis’ letters - I enjoy reading his books, but there is something different in almost being able to hear his voice as he “spoke” through his letters to Van and Davy.


Well, eventually something comes along to test the “Shining Barrier”, but I won’t give anything else away in case you read it, but I definitely recommend this one. It was awesome!

So - I was curious - what are some of your “thousand strands” ? Some of the things Rob and I share a joy in are...playing in creation (especially enjoying the beach), music, reading, trying fun hole-in-the-wall local restaurants, hanging at coffee shops, dreaming of owning our own coffee shop, dreaming of planting a church together, cooking together, running, lovin’ on our Brynnie...the list goes on, but there is a start. How ‘bout you?

4 comments:

[*B] said...

well, I am happy to report that I ordered this book today from Amazon....a whopping $2. 89;-) I know it will be worth every penny;-)

well, you probably know us well enough to already know these things, and our list is pretty similar to yours.....

but, here goes:
out for a coffee/tea date,
reading,
believe it or not, since G came along, grocery shopping has even become a fun outing for us to do together;-),
trying fun, local restaurants,
home-improvement {apt. improvement;-)},
Graeme time,
cooking,
driving in old neighborhoods,
scoping out new towns,
finding new music,
board games,
yard work {when we have had a yard;-)},
and lately, thrift shopping....
to name a few;-)

I'm looking forward to reading this book!

Seth & Bethany Heijermans said...

This is my reading list for 2010 so I didn't read your post for fear that I might find out too much. Can't wait to read it thought and be able to talk to someone who has read it too!

juliechall said...

Thanks Sarah! I'm so glad that you got it - let me know how it goes :) Bethany - I'm so glad - I will love chatting as you get into it!

Seth & Bethany Heijermans said...

I came back and read your review once I officially read the book. I too enjoyed The Shining Barrier they built... it is inspiring to me! Enjoyed reading your review. A Severe Mercy is definitely one of my favorites.