Talking with my firstborn, Harry, is always enlightening. He is a deep thinker who researches subjects long and hard and holds strong opinions based on his scrutiny of the subject matter from all sides. When he was a long-haired teenager he loved heavy metal music, and although he tried to listen to Christian heavy metal bands, he did not think their music was as “cutting edge” as the secular bands. His “cross to bear” in all this was that he was a preacher’s kid. Long hair and heavy metal music didn’t exactly fit some people’s idea of acceptable in the Christian circles in which he traveled. It, also, wasn’t always Christians who took exception with these attributes. Harry was told to leave stores for fear he was shoplifting and turned down for jobs even though his resume was far superior to those with shorter hair.
Today we had some superior mother-son time. (I have to say it is always like this when we can steal moments to talk away from the hustle and bustle of his busy family/work life.) He was talking about this book he was reading, The Day Mettalica Came to Church, by Pastor John Van Sloten of New Hope Church in Alberta, Canada. He really likes the book, he said, because Pastor Van Sloten has down in print what Harry says he has always thought, “that God can speak through everything, even what some consider crap.” He told me how many times the heavy metal bands articulated the ideas he had of the world when he was a teen and they expressed them in a way that was relevant to him at that time in his life.
As the conversation unfolded, I was able to share with him about a book I had read this past year with a very similar theme that “God can speak through everything, even the crap.” I shared with him about 1000 Gifts by Ann Voskamp and how the opening chapter tells of the tragic death of her sister at the age of 2 and how Ann, then 4, remembered her little sister’s bloody body lying in the driveway. The book continues on from there to describe in detail one woman’s revelation of how all life’s experiences are known to God and that because He is a loving God, He is there with us in everything. When we realize this, we must give thanks for all things because He is in all things. That is rather like what Pastor Van Sloten says, is it not?
My son, who carries an iPad with him everywhere because that is how he does business, went to the Amazon website and put Ann’s book on his wish list. Good sign that he thinks Mom may be onto something?! I think St. Augustine would have applauded our struggling together today. What do you think? Has anyone out there read both books?