Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cathleen Falsani: Grace, Eventually

As you know, I'm a voracious reader. One of the first places I go when I move into a new community is the public library! I can spend hours and hours there, perusing the books, discovering new authors, reading big-city newspapers...

When I moved to Houston last year, I spent a lot of time at the library closest to our house. While there, I discovered a great author named Cathleen Falsani. (You can read all about her impressive credentials here.) Her book, Sin Boldly: A Field Guide for Grace, really captured my imagination. Like Yancey's What's So Amazing About Grace? and Manning's Abba's Child, it opened my eyes again to the wonders of God's grace and love. The book is part travelogue, part memoir, and Cathleen's strength lies in finding God in the most mundane and extraordinary circumstances.

I was really enjoying the book until tragedy struck. If you followed my blog last year at all, you know that our Houston Experience was challenging sometimes, especially during the times our rental house flooded. This library book was a casualty of one such flooding. We tried to salvage it, propping it open, blow drying its pages... but alas, we could not save it.

I thought perhaps its subtitle would score some points or something as I meekly walked to the library desk, looking for some sign of grace. I mean, the pages were still readable, even if the book would no longer fully due to ripply pages!

Nope. $24.00 later I was the proud owner of a severely water-damaged copy of Cathleen's book.

A year later, I was chatting with her on Twitter (follow Cathleen here) and I told her my story (edited down to 140-character chunks). She asked for my address, and a week later, this was in my mailbox...

Grace may not come on our timetable, but sooner or later it eventually comes. Thank you, Cathleen!

Check out Cathleen's other books, The Dude Abides: The Gospel According to the Coen Brothers and The God Factor: Inside the Spiritual Lives of Public People.

Read her fascinating account of exploring Barack Obama's faith for the Chicago Sun-Times in 2004.

Check out Cathleen's official website here, her blog here, and her Facebook page here.


mkeene said...

Thanks so much for this book review Matt. I just finished it this morning, and enjoyed it so much. Very inspiring, and wonderfully written!

Matt Nightingale said...

Hey Michael! Glad you liked the book. I'm a big fan of Cathleen's. And you should post something on your blog! I went to see "What Happened to Your Eye?" and was disappointed to see no posts! :)

mkeene said...

Thanks for the blog prod Matt. Blogging was on my someday/maybe list. Lots of recent journaling in my life would probably help me with the process of blogging.

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