Summer Vacation (Books and Travels)



In my last blog, I wrote about how great it was to read some of the books that I’ve been wanting to read this summer! That remains true…I’ve read two more books since I wrote that last and I’ll give my two sentence synopsis of those two books:

Taking Back the United Methodist Church by Mark Tooley. This book was written just in time for all the delegates of the quadrennial General Conference by the UM Action Director at the Institute on Religion and Democracy. While I think that the book had lots of good information in it, the sometimes inflammatory tone could perhaps mislead readers, especially readers who have a beef against the IRD or Tooley. Reading the book gave me some background on some of the contemporary controversies in the UMC (for the good or for the bad). (Sorry…that was three sentences.)

2.) The Shack by William P. Young. Paraphrasing Eugene Peterson in his accolades of the book, The Shack is a modern-day Pilgrim’s Progress. That’s pretty high praise, but (if you don’t take the theology too seriously, as it borders on modalism)the book is encouraging and helps to answer the question of how God is at work during difficult times. (There…I did it in 2 sentences!)

I also got to go on vacation since my last post. I visited friends in Oxford, MS; Lake Arthur, LA; and Mandeville, LA and had my fill of southern food! Borrowing from my good friend Katie’s blog, I’ll adopt her style of 5 words or phrases to summarize my trip:

Oxford–Laughter. Conversation. Great Food. Southern Charm. Kindred Spirits.
Lake Arthur–Stories. Giggles. Crawfish. Spiritually Relaxing. Felt like home.
Mandeville–Barfing Baby. Rest. Catching Up. French Market. Sharing Secrets.

I had such a great time with Corrie and D., Melanie and her family and Shannon and Jeff! Thanks to you all for hosting me! What a gift each of you are to me…

I ended my vacation at a family wedding in Springfield, MO. After 2300 miles and about $200 in gasoline, I arrived home exhausted, but feeling incredibly blessed by my friends and family!

PS I listened to two more great AudioBooks on my travels, Light from Heaven by Jan Karon and Morality for Beautiful Girls, one of Alexander McCall Smith’s books from the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. Both were great!

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About ashleealley

I am the Clergy Recruitment and Development Coordinator for the Great Plains United Methodist Church. I particularly enjoy helping people see what God is calling them to do and knowing how to respond to that. I'm an ordained deacon in the UMC. When I'm not deacon-ing, I run, or read, or spend time with family or friends.
This entry was posted in books, personal, travel, vacation. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Summer Vacation (Books and Travels)

  1. Anonymous says:

    Um, Ernie and Elliott were a bit hurt that you neglected to mention them in your five words describing your visit. I guess they have to puke in order to get mentioned. They will remember that for the next time you visit…Loved reading your blog today!Shannon

  2. Ashlee says:

    Oh yeah! Tell E&E that I enjoyed my time with them, too! I’m glad that you enjoyed reading it…I enjoyed writing it!

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