Friday, May 9, 2014

30/30: A Favorite Book

The 30/30 Vision Blog Challenge continues today with an easy task. Or at least an obvious one. The prompt and description I wrote back in December says this: "A Book You Could (or have) Read Over & Over Again - "If you could only take one book to that aforementioned deserted island..." The obvious answer, the simple answer and the correct answer is The Holy Bible. I have read it over and over again. It is full of history, great adventure, heroes & villains and of course the story of our faith. It is written in a myriad of styles so it seldom get boring (begots excepted) and it is constantly revealing new truths and new people to connect with to me. I love the scriptures, and the Bible is the clear choice as the answer to this prompt. But that is too simple and perhaps too cliche to just leave my answer at that. So let's go a step beyond. What would be the 2nd book I would choose?

Let's look at some of the books I have read multiple times at as adult (not counting Dr. Seuss, who should get more credit here than he is going to receive!). I have read the 3 books in The Lord of the Rings trilogy at least 4 times since college. I have read Brennan Manning's The Ragamuffin Gospel and Mike Yaconelli's Dangerous Wonder several times each. I have read a dozen books in Lee Child's Jack Reacher series and could easily choose Jack to be my island buddy. But after giving is some serious thought, I think my #2 choice for the One Book would be The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas. I am certain I have read it 6 or 7 times in my life.

Why do I love the Musketeers so much? It is a story of great loyalty and bravery in the face of long odds. There is plenty of excitement and adventure, and a good dash of romance. There is a struggle with theology, particularly through the character of Athos, who has a long history with the Church. But the primary draw to this classic novel for me is friendship. Athos, Porthos and Aramis share a bond like few others in literature, and as this story progresses they add a young D'Artagnan to the mix. Throughout the tale you see the relationships they build, the love they have for one another, and you hear them shout those famous words- "All for one and one for all!" It is inspiring, and it always causes me to remember how blessed I am to have so many friends in this world who have my back no matter the circumstance.

The other reason I return to this book so often is that every few years they make another movie version, and I always give them a try. A number of them over the years have been very good (For me, the best was the 1973/74 films The Three Musketeers & The Four Musketeers in which they split the book in half to be more able to tell the entire story. Not prefect, but very good!) and quite enjoyable- but none of the will ever equal the depth and details of the book. So I return to the source to get my "Real Musketeer" fix nearly every time, and I am always glad I did.

So my task for today is complete, and I'll even throw in a bonus. The Bible wins, The Three Musketeers are second. The Lord of the Rings are third. So tell me...what's your go-to book?

Because of Jesus,

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