July 2, 2011

I'm Late

No, it's not what you think.  It never is... (and if it ever was, I should hope I am capable of thinking up a more poetic way to say so!)  But it did get you to read this post, so its job is done.  :)

Honestly, though, if you've ever attended any regularly scheduled class, service, job, etc. with me, you know it's true.  I'm perpetually late.  It's like the clock doesn't apply to me, and if it does, well, that means it's running 15 minutes (or weeks) late, too.  Of course, this wouldn't bother anyone if I lived in some reasonable place closer to the Mediterranean, but here in the northern part of the western hemisphere, it seems to matter.  It's not my fault, though.  Nurture over nature, I say!  Mom still hasn't sent the package she promised in April, but I don't blame her for that: her Mother's Day card still sits peacefully, collecting dust on our bookshelf, right next to Dad's Father's Day card.  Nobody in my family likes being late.  It's just what we do.  It's one of those strange genetic facts of life that everyone complains about but no one remediates and everyone perpetuates.  Like Aunt Petunia's jello salad.

Anyway, what now? you might be wondering.  Yes, Carrie, we've been reading this blog long enough to know that you're not exactly jive with The Now and have a very difficult time finishing what you started, even if you started it within a reasonable time period after you were inspired to begin it!

Well.  Thanks for the vote of confidence.  I'll ignore that comment and maybe, just maybe, I'll be able to finish this very post.  


(Two days later...)  

As I was saying...

I'm late.

There are many things in life to which I have been late, but this is one of the more lamentable, as I'm enjoying myself with it more than I have with any other.  It's called Harry Potter.  Maybe you've heard of it?  I bought Eric the first book for Christmas, as I knew he liked the series, but sometime last month, between novels myself and at loss for something new to read, I decided to give it a whirl.  Eh, the last movie's comin' out this Summer, so I may as well give the first book a shot.  Oh boy, if ever I signed up for something that turned out to be way more than I bargained for, about which I was happy, this is it.  Now I somehow find myself on the verge of delving into the fifth book, having hit up the local used book store about once a week since May, trying with all my might to get through the seventh before going to see the movie in two weeks.  Eric has picked up the series again too (he can never settle for having less fun than I), for the third time I think.

I suppose I should explain why I never picked up the decade-old pop phenomenon before now.  I guess it was the whole "witches and wizards are of the devil" Southern mentality that kept the books out of my hands.  No, poor Bobby Boucher's upbringing isn't rare down there.*  Not that my mother is at all likened unto his, but many of the Bible Belt Mothers were, and I'm pretty sure our church at the time shunned the series altogether.  As I wasn't one to rock the boat, I instead just went with the flow and avoided it.  Now that I'm past "the point of no return" that is book four, I do realize that this is no longer a cute, albeit incredibly well-written, children's series, but a serious fight of Good and Evil.  Actually, it's almost totally not unlike the story of Scripture.  And there are certainly very dark elements, but the story never enshrines the dark.  It totally upholds the defeat of the dark and depends upon the sacrifice of self for one's friends and even grace towards one's enemies (besides He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, of course, who -- in calling himself "the Dark Lord" -- is nearer the image of Satan than any other fictional character I've encountered).

My point is: I was forbidden from reading Harry Potter because it was so anti-Christian, but the truth is: Harry Potter is more "Christian" than a lot of "Christian fiction" out there.  I could just say it's been a fun read, and it has.  But really, it strikes a chord with me because it is so near The Truth.  The Truth about a beautiful, magical world created for pleasure and glory, but tainted with fear and pride by evil and selfishness.  The Truth about a horrible, powerful "lord" scraping and slithering and slaughtering for even more power and glory.  The Truth about One who is more powerful than he, who uses his own power for good, risking and eventually laying down his life for the safety of not only his friends but of all mankind.  Of course, I haven't read the last three books yet (please don't tell me how it ends!!!) so I'm still somewhat in the analogical dark, but I think you get my point.

So, what's next?, I wonder.  Will I manage to surmount the seemingly unsurmountable by getting through the next 2100-odd pages before July 15?  Eh, probably not, but I don't care to stand in line for the first showing of the last movie anyway.  

And you?  Any good, un-Christian Christian novels out there we should know about?  What do you think (or what have you been told) about Harry Potter?  Whatever you say, don't give away the ending or I may have to put a spell on you!


*If you don't understand this reference, then you probably weren't raised in the South, but perhaps in a similarly restrictive culture.  I promise, this restriction was well-founded.


  1. I'm so glad you got into HP!! We've loved it for many, many years . . . as you know, we're trudging through it again very slowly as bedtime reading and are in the first chapters of book #4. I love your thoughts about how gospel-like the message is. I'd never really thought of it from that point of view.
    And don't worry--I won't reveal how it ends!!
    You might have to check out the Hunger Games next . . .

    P.S. On the subject of being late--have you sent that check to Erica? =)

  2. Chris and I share a similar story with you regarding Harry Potter--growing up thinking it was evil, and now loving it, and really appreciating the picture of Good and Evil that it presents. And loving the fun of it all too :) Sadly, I have only watched the six movies, but Chris has read the series a couple of times, and I will reading them soon. However, I AM going to the midnight showing with Chris July 15th :) We're excited!

  3. I feel the same way about Star Wars movies -- they're like Sci-Fi Scripture. (That wasn't meant disrespectfully.) God works ALL things for good, even books or movies that are (gasp) shunned as being "un-Christian." I think that's why He gave us the gift of discernment -- to filter what we see/hear/read against the unerring Truth of His Word and to make up our own minds!

  4. Jenna, no. hahahah... er... sorry? :)

    Linnea, it's encouraging to hear about other believers who have met this challenge and overcome it! It really is a good story, with loads of fun thrown in! I hope you and Chris have an excellent time seeing the movie! Don't get trampled!!! :)

    Kimby, haha! Awesome! Though I have to admit, I've never seen Star Wars with an adult's understanding ('twas a long, long time ago...). So cool to hear about another great analogy! I'm so thankful for the Spirit's presence with us to give us that discernment. Amen!

  5. You are SPOT ON with your assessment of the HP books, Carrie! I agree completely. And I've read all seven books, especially the fourth one (my favourite), several times now, haha. I have also bought my HP movie tickets already for July 14th :P I am SO EXCITED!

  6. I should also add that there were some church members of mine who told some people that HP is evil and all that, but my family couldn't be bothered because we KNOW that we wouldn't be affected badly by the series, and we haven't ;) My dad's a big HP fan, too! Haha.