Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Blue Like Jazz
This is a book that has been on my radar to read for a few years. When we were at Discovery, a group got together and read the book and discussed the chapters and stories. However, due to a schedule conflict, I could not participate.
The book however has been on my shelf for all this time. Donald Miller is the writer and I really enjoy his writing and I like to listen to him speak. Thus, it was time to pull it down from the bookshelf and read it.
I was prompted to bring this one down and read it after I was listening to Thousand Foot Krutch. The reason that I was reminded of this book is because as I was listening t their album, I remembered that Amy did an interview with them and they mentioned tat their album title came from the book. Here is a snipit from the interview:
Reaching across the divide isn’t always easy, but Thousand Foot Krutch seeks commonality, not division with others, which is evident in their latest album. The Flame In All of Us is a call for humanity to come together to discover the unifying threads that make us human.
The album title is pulled from the pages of Donald Miller’s popular book Blue Like Jazz according to McNevan who elaborates saying, “No matter what we believe, where we grew up, what our nationalities are—all those things that divide us—at some point in our lives well all have the questions—Who am I? Why am I here?”
It’s exactly those questions that Thousand Foot Krutch seeks to explore in the album’s title track, “The Flame In All of Us”, an upbeat melodic song. The album ranges in style from rock to alternative to the heavier sound for which the band is known. Perhaps the most poignant aspect of the album as a whole is McNevan’s ability to rail through struggles while always pointing to hope. “We don’t always have great days. We sometimes have really bad days,” he humbly admits. “To be this shiny, happy Christian all the time—that’s not me and that’s not a lot of people I know. I feel being realistic about it is more honest.”
This book was good. It was not great. He shares 20 chapters (stories) and they are "easy" reads. There were stories that resonated with me more than others. But the thing that I thoroughly enjoy about Donald is that he tells stories and through the stories, you are able to grab a hold of Christianity Spirituality.
My favorite story (I think) that he tells in the book (which I had heard before) was the confessional booth story. They set up a confessional booth in the midst of the biggest party at the college. They were in the booth confessing to the students for the "screw-ups" that Christianity has made over the years.
I think that David Allen from HM Magazine sums up this book greatly, when he says, "Donald Miller has achieved what every Christian writer toils and types for: spiritual relevancy. He has completely revealed himself in his latest effort. Laced with off-guard humor, biting insights, and to-the-point summaries, Blue like jazz is a thought provoking journey toward a God who's not only real but reachable."