No Love for One Thousand Gifts

Here’s a shocker – My Book Club is reading the long-time best seller One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. And we hate it.

Sure, her message of gratitude and finding things to be grateful for in every day life is an important reminder. But her poetic writing style is killing us, and her mystical sense of God in all things is nearly heretical… And don’t get me started on the sexual imagery in the last chapter of making love to God… Really?! Lied to by the best seller list. Or maybe good theology isn’t best seller material? Sigh.

Now I’m off to write a short study guide on gratitude to see if we can salvage the main point of the book for our discussion night and make it more concrete, and more Biblical.

Here’s a good review:

2 thoughts on “No Love for One Thousand Gifts

  1. Funny commentary! I also hated to writing style– could hardly read more than two pages before the strange adverbs-turned-into-adjectives thing started getting to me.

    I never made it to the last chapter. However, the imagery of making love to God is a part of the Christian tradition which has gotten lost in the last couple hundred years, particularly in Puritanical USA. And it’s also very biblical–found in so many passages and said to be one of the great mysteries. Example: Ephesians 5: 31-32 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and His church.” If I am not mistaken, Paul is using the analogy of sexual intercourse between a husband and wife, to describe the relationship of Christ with the church (all believers). Some people say that is one of the final and most beautiful stages of the Christian experience, which often happens in very old age. In fact, I was just reading in a book about spiritual direction a chapter of how many mature Christians finally start getting the imagery of the bridegroom and some of the more sensual passages, and their younger spiritual directors who haven’t gotten to that stage of awareness will mistakenly shut that down because it makes them uncomfortable. It makes me uncomfortable, too, and I’m thinking of exploring it more.

    It’s also beautiful to look more deeply into the immanent / transcendent natures of God. Another unfortunate Western shift so far into transcendence that we miss so much of the richness of an imminent God. Would be a shame to throw all of that away.

    Gratitude, of course, is always a winner, and a real key to joy.


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