Saturday, 2 February 2019

Book of the month.....

A copy of George Eliot's 'Middlemarch' has been sitting in one of our bookcases- unread- since 1981;  the book-plate on the inner cover gives that date. And now I am over two-thirds through it, and find it, eventually, unput-down-able. I was a bit slow to get into it just after Christmas, and put it aside for a book acquired as a Christmas present, but now...…… every spare moment seems taken up with it. It will be the middle of the week before it is finished, and I hope for neat and tidy endings with regard to the fate of all the main characters, although I fear that the plot has set up so many conflicts, that this hope will not be fulfilled.

My experience of the faith has some similarities with the process of reading 'Middlemarch'. Invest in it, and it becomes all-absorbing. Lay it aside, neglect it, and other interests supervene. I cannot say that neat and tidy endings are part of the faith; life is too varied for that. But the broad canvas             (cosmic in scope in the case of the faith), interest in the outcomes of people's affairs, and wanting the best for them; a benign understanding of the frailty of human behaviour, uncertainty as to how the future might unfold; all these are part of how our story is taken up into God's story.
And as with 'Middlemarch', the omniscient author will, I'm sure, bring it to a satisfactory ending.  

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