>Last week was spring break and we went out to Colorado to visit the family and get in some snowboarding. I have to admit that out of all the stuff we did out there, the one thing I will forever remember and savor about the trip was picking up and reading the book, The Shack. It is absolutely, without a doubt, with zero competition, my most very favoritest book of all time. (And yes I made up the word “favoritest” because this book deserves such a superlative, so there!)
It’s kind of a big deal for me because I have never actually had a favorite book. Sure there are lots I love and hold dear to my heart, but never a favorite! Reading this book felt like going home. This sounds silly and I don’t even know if it makes any sense, but I feel like I’ve been waiting to read this book for 27 years. And now I have. And it all just feels so right.
So what’s the big deal about The Shack? I don’t know. I really don’t think I can do it any justice by describing it. Beauty…..grace……wonder………longing……peace……..love……….those are just a few of the feelings that are conjured up in my mind when I think of the story. But to sum it up in some sort of tangible terms, the book is about a middle-aged man whose youngest daughter is abducted and killed. Though he’s always been a “religious” person, he finds himself angry and distant with God after her death. After a few years he receives a letter from God (Papa) inviting him to meet him at the shack (where she was murdered) because God misses him and wants to talk. The man goes to meet God and the rest of the book is about their conversation……the anger, the questions, the unconditional love, the healing, the rage……..and so much more.
This book broke my heart over and over again. I swear, it was a miracle I didn’t dry out my tear ducts from reading it! But what I loved most was that it never left me in that place. It repeatedly broke my heart, but put it back together every time.
I said before that I hardly ever read books more than once, and generally that’s true. But there are a few exceptions- there are a few out there that have left my mind and heart altered after reading and those are the ones I go back to over and over again. The only other ones that have done this are The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, Captivating, Letters from a Skeptic, and now The Shack. Steve is reading it right now and I can hardly wait for him to get done so I can get my grubby little paws back on it.
Obviously I encourage you to read it. I really want to know others’ opinion on it. So far I have yet to find anyone as enthused about it as I am. In fact, just the opposite. My father-in-law disliked it so much he put it down before finishing it. Even my trusted, to be counted on, bookworm friend Emily didn’t like it! (It’s ok- I still love you!). But I know there are lots out there who do love it like me and I can’t wait to find one to discuss it with me. Of course I’d love discussing it even if you didn’t like it!
So please- if you’re looking to read a good book (or at the very least an interesting, thought-provoking, maybe even controversial book), then consider The Shack. It truly is my favorite book ever. Took me 27 years to be able to say that about any book, but it was worth the wait! To me, it epitomizes the power of words, of writing, of storytelling. Reading it has changed and affected me in ways I wish I could convey on this silly, little blog. So please read it and let me know what you think – I would love to hear!