Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Book Review – The Shack

One word just about covers what I have to say about reading this book – SERIOUSLY???

It was recommended to me by a friend with whom I had been talking about my endless search for giving forgiveness and a connection with God that I see other people have. She told me that she read it after she had been told about it by another friend. She claimed that this wonderful book showed her a different way of seeing God and forgiveness and the whole concept of how to go about forgiving and a new way to think of God and the Holy Trinity. Ok – I’ll give it a shot. Besides Oprah loved it.. I has to be good.

First of all, I cannot get my mind around the idea that God appears as an Aunt Jemima kind of person and the Holy Spirit is some fairy oriental chick. None of that conforms to anything in my mind. I think the idea of meeting God in the cabin after the tragedy he experienced is a novel approach to a conversation with God. But Aunt Jemima?? I imagine that the author was trying to say that God will come to us in a comforting form so as not to frighten or overwhelm. I guess his idea of comfort is an Aunt Jemima-like woman cooking in the kitchen. Full of love, wisdom all the while preparing food for the healing of ones soul. I did like his version of Jesus. The warm loving carpenter persona is something I can “get”. The flighty fairy oriental like holy spirit that he can barely see is a little further out there than the Aunt Jemima image. The way they interact as equals didn't make sense either. I have a hard time imagining God and Jesus on equal level. Jesus is the son right?? God is the father. So how are they equal? I see it like a triangle. God a the top. Last I heard he was the Creator. Of everything including Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

The imagery is well written, however, it seemed more like a vivid dream than something that could actually happen. And that may be what he was trying to get across. I was ok with the whole story until he gets to the shack and it switches to a semi trip on acid. Small cabin in the woods turns into a Thomas Kinkaid painting with the colorful imagery of light, gardens, creeks and smoke coming out of the chimney. Even the night sky was described in vivid detail. I can still see these picturesque images in my mind and that may have been the point. The emotional breakdown at the end when he forgives a serial killer was a little much for me. Forgive this person and let God handle it. The whole while God is telling him that this asshole is worth saving. I can’t get my mind around that. I guess he is saying that everyone is born good… it is this world that makes them what they are. And somewhere in there is the soul worth saving for all eternity. I think I would have preferred they kick his ass back into hell. Maybe he could keep my stepfather company.

Just goes to show… what works for one doesn't always work for another. It didn't work with me and the whole time I spent reading this book for some kind of direction was a waste of my time. I am no further on the ultimate quest than I was when I started reading it. It was a best seller and I am sure he was on Oprah spouting all this colorful crap… glad I missed that episode. That would have been a waste of a good hour. I know I am a bitter and cranky bitch but this book did not help me on my quest- I got some things… the rest made no sense at all. So the search goes on.

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