February 1, 2011

A Grief Observed


A Grief Observed is the first book I've ever read by C.S. Lewis. I've heard about him plenty and also watched the first couple Chronicles of Narnia films. And to be quite frank, I hope the rest of his writings are nothing like this one. And I don't think they are. This book is a collection of ramblings from journals written by Lewis, deep in a pit of sadness after his wife dies. And don't think that I'm knocking him. I'm not. I understand the disjointed and sometimes disheartening thoughts of of the bereaved. And like him, I have discovered many truths in the wild ride called grief.

My favorite passages:
1. "You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life and death to you." I find so much truth in this. My belief in the afterlife truly took shape after Evan's death. "Apparently [my] faith...has seemed strong only because I have never really cared, not desperately, whether [it] existed or not. Yet I thought it did." This is so me. Perfectly.

2. "God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn't." I truly believe that this is true for any challenge we have in life, not just when someone dies. 

3. "The teacher moves you on." God is the teacher and I am the student. I understand this relationship best as a driving instructor. When I see a student has mastered or come close to mastering a skill, I direct them to do more difficult tasks. Often, when it comes to getting on the freeway for the first time, they do not think that they are ready for such a step. But they are. I made sure of that during previous practice. And I'm ready to help if their nervousness gets in the way of their safety. It is the same with Heavenly Father. He is there to help us along the path. And it is HE who moves us on.

Helen Joy Davidman Lewis and C.S. Lewis

3 Riveting COMMENTS:

  1. Sounds like some in depth thinking and statements. But, I believe in these just like you. I especially like the last comparison you made.

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  2. I love CS Lewis! Love this post!

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  3. I read this book a while ago when I couldn't see my way out of the grief. My mind was a cluster of rambled thoughts also. It helped me in the way that he questioned his faith, I still struggle with the doubts creeping in my heart.Others would make me feel guilty for having these thoughts, sometimes you just need to know what you are feeling is common for someone in grief.

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