Tuesday, January 14, 2014
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
When I was in 3rd grade, I saw this book in my house. A flying horse-person, a green head with red eyes in a crystal ball, by an author I couldn't pronounce. It looked way too science-fictiony to me, but I tried. I don't think I made it past the first 3 pages. I tried again a couple years later. Eh. Not my thing.
I am now 20 years later, I decided to give it a try. And hoooooly mama. I LOVED this book. I loved loved loved it. Loved it. I loved this book. Let's just make this clear, it was good.
It may have helped that my expectations were low. But I don't think so. I have so many things marked and highlighted, notes made in the electronic margins of my Paperwhite. I'm not going to summarize at all, just point out some things that made my heart leap with joy as I read!
I have come to realize that one thing I love in literature is what my mother-in-law loves...the good vs. evil and the nobility and justice of Good overcoming Evil. A Wrinkle in Time was that for me. Good vs. Evil. There were so many obvious connections and references to God. L'Engle was not shy about referring to God by name, stating that they needed His help in this journey.
"We were sent here for something. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."
Yes! And the journey may be really difficult and scary and painful. But, there is a purpose and we have help.
"Good helps us, the stars help us, perhaps what you would call light helps us, love helps us. Oh, my child, I cannot explain! This is something you just have to know or not know. [...] We look not at the things which are what you would call seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporal. But the things which are not seen are eternal."
Isn't this beautiful? What helps us along our journey is goodness, light (as in the light of Christ); it's something that you know and feel. It is not seen, but eternal. Faith.
Meg, after searching for her father and finally found him, still faced life-threatening danger:
"She had found her father and he had not made everything all right. Everything kept getting worse and worse. If the long search for her father was ended, and he wasn't able to overcome all their difficulties, there was nothing to guarantee that it would all come out right in the end. There was nothing left to hope for."
Ok, so my heart didn't leap for joy when I read this, but I did understand! I grew up surrounded by faith. I grew up knowing how to pray and felt that He was there. But just because we find our Father, capital "F", doesn't mean that everything is immediately resolved. We are still tried and tested. Sometimes if even gets more difficult as "evil" can try to intervene and keep us from our mission...from our purpose...from His (our Father's) purpose. So, what do we seek for help at those moments? Do we rely on good, light, and things which we cannot see and are eternal? Or do we look for the easy answer and rely on what we can see, which is temporal?
In A Wrinkle in Time, that temporal answer is It. A pulsing brain that controls everyone and everything in Its power. It's the easy way. People see it, feel it, and either passively allow It to take over, or choose to let It take over because it's easier...it's less work...It may seem like the answers are there for you, but It only fails you, leaving you empty and hopeless and even more afraid because you DON'T have answers, or even agency to choose.
I loved this book. My book is littered with my commentary. I can't recommend it enough. A week later, I'm still thinking about it.