Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Shack

Last week I also read The Shack, by Wm. Paul Young. And I read the entire novel in one day, no less. This, after dozens of people kept telling me, "You have to read The Shack! You have to read The Shack!" So I read The Shack. Not a bad book. But for some reason, I kept thinking that a large basketball player was going to be introduced into the cast of characters. But he never appeared.
I would characterize The Shack as a kind of allegorical fantasy--not usually my favorite type of read--ala C.S. Lewis and his novel The Great Divorce or perhaps like some of McDonald's novels (not Ronald McDonald). But The Shack is about redemption, questions we have about God's justice, and one man's search for healing through immense personal loss. All in all, it is a theological treatise and a work that is exceptionally thought-provoking. And I did enjoy it, although I would not have wanted to read it for more than a day, as it was too painful.
Hence the reason I read the novel during the two hours I waited on my son while he was undergoing an orthodontics adjustment. Every time the good doctor ratcheted another screw in his jaw (I could hear my son screaming for me from a padded room fifty yards away) I would lick the ends of my fingers, turn a page, and begin another chapter. And when my son emerged after his ordeal, jaw slack and bleeding, I just told him to trust God, casually took out my wallet, and paid another installment in the two year plan. Now that's faith! Too bad The Shack didn't address any of the questions I have about God's justice!

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