The Big Picture | Thursday’s Thoughts

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Sorry for the less consistent posting again. It’s difficult to get back into routine.

Today, I’m going to talk to you about the big picture. Often, we find ourselves in a situation that doesn’t seem to have any possible positive outcome. When this happens, we need to remember that we don’t see the big picture. But God does, and He can work everything to make something good.

That’s all great, but it’s also pretty cliché. It seems to be something that we say a lot but don’t often see in real life.

So I’m going to tell you a story.

Imagine a young girl, with loving parents and a brother on either side. Life isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty great. Until her mum gets cancer and dies.

We hear the word cancer, and it fills us with dread. This terrible disease ruins lives, and is the opposite of hope.

But this girl continues to grow up. Her dad marries another lady, who’s pretty nice, and nothing like the evil stepmother type. And then they get the exciting news – her stepmother is having a baby.

This baby is a little girl, the sister that the first girl has always dreamed of. She and her brothers dote upon their little sister, and the two sisters are very close, despite the large age gap.

Both girls grow up. The younger sister gets married and has three kids, two boys and a girl, who the older sister loves being an auntie to.

Back when her mum died, the girl couldn’t see how there could possibly be any good to come out of the situation. She didn’t know that four people – and possibly more – would exist because her mum died. Without the death of her mum, the girl’s dad would never have married her stepmother, and she never would have had her baby sister or niece and nephews.

The girl? She’s my auntie. Her brothers are my uncles, and her stepmother is my grandmother. The baby girl is my mum, and I am the niece.

If God can bring life after death, and hope after tragedy, then imagine what He could do for you. He sees the bigger picture, when all we can see is a tiny piece of the puzzle.

Arohanui,
Tessa Ann

The List: Update #3

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It has been over a month since I did one of these. In theory, I should have read eight books on The List between this post and the last one.

Ha. No.

I’m basically planning on reading a ton of books after exams finish (23rd of November or something) until the end of year. The one issue with this plan would be if I got a job, which I should probably do.

Who needs a job though?

Anyways, on with the update.

Changes to The List: I have actually made a couple of changes. A couple of weeks ago, I went through and looked up every single book on the library website, to add them to a list on there so that I can easily reserve them, and so that they’re all just sitting there for me to choose from. However, two books apparently aren’t owned by my library (or my family), so they’ve been removed from The List. Neither of them were ones that I knew much about or cared about reading. They were Swallows And Amazons, and A Confederacy Of Dunces. I’ve replaced them with The Wizard Of Oz, since I’ve recently acquired a copy of it and I feel like it should be on The List, and The Giver, because I’ve heard a lot about it recently, and it sounds like it belongs on The List.

Books I’ve Read: While I didn’t read eight books, I have read a fair few since I last updated you, and since I’m having some serious technology problems, these will probably be brief.

The first one I read was A Wrinkle In Time. This one was strange. I’m pretty sure this is one that most people read as a kid, but I hadn’t even heard of it until I was twelve ish. I honestly don’t know what I thought about it. Yes, I enjoyed it, but it was also so obscure that my mind couldn’t wrap around what on earth was going on. I gave it four stars. It was very strange.

The next one was Bridget Jones’s Diary. I did not like this one. I ended up with the omnibus version, since apparently my library doesn’t own just the first one. However, I did not read the second book, purely because I barely made it through the first. I stayed up late to read it, because it was due back the next day and there was no way I was going to waste my time reading half and not finish it. It was just rubbish, if I’m honest. It wasn’t the worst thing I’ve ever read, but it was pretty bad. I don’t understand why it’s so popular. It just wasn’t worth any of the praise that it’s been given. I gave it a very low two stars.

This next one greatly excites me. I FINALLY FINISHED EMMA. IT TOOK ME MORE THAN A MONTH. I literally read the first half in a month, and the second half in a few hours (when I was sitting on the bus while everyone was climbing a mountain). Seriously, I’ve never felt so victorious about finishing a book. I did enjoy it. The issue was that I read it slower than most books, because of the writing style, which frustrated me, which made me read it even slower. It was an endless cycle. I love the story (I’ve seen the movie and the YouTube series multiple times), and the book was just as great. Four stars.

Next up was Catch-22. It was not at all what I was expecting. It was so depressing and tragic, but it was so darn funny and ridiculous? Like what on earth? The first 100ish pages bored me half to death, but after that, I think I might’ve enjoyed it. I don’t even know. One thing I do know, though, is that it was very confusing. I had no idea what was past and what was present. I’m not sure if it was all present and just worded weirdly, or if it was written in a strange order. Also there were so many characters that I could barely keep track of who was who. I’m just so bewildered by this book. How could something with so many deaths be so funny and not bring a single tear to my eye? It’s bizarre. I haven’t rated it, because I have no idea what I think about it.

And finally, we have The Story Of My Life by/about Helen Keller. Helen Keller has been a personal hero of mine for as long as I can remember. I’ve always had a place in my heart for people who are blind (which is probably connected to my multiple eye problems in some way). However, I’ve admired Helen Keller specifically, because although she was both blind and deaf, she didn’t let that stop her from doing amazing things and becoming an amazing person. Rather than becoming an amazing person despite her disabilities, she became an amazing person through her disabilities. She always persevered, no matter how hard things got. I’d never read one of her autobiographies before, so this one was a first. It made me love her and admire her even more. Her writing was so poetic and beautiful. It was short but sweet – covering the first 22ish years of her life in 75 pages. I adored it. Five stars, and a new favourite.

Favourite/least favourite: I finally have an answer for this one! My favourite was, without a doubt, The Story Of My Life, and my least favourite was Bridget Jones’s Diary.

Next to read: Good question. I’m currently reading The Bell Jar, which is pretty good so far. I’ve also got Breakfast At Tiffany’s waiting for me at the library. I’m trying to read all of the library ones first, since I turn 18 later this year and I don’t know if I’ll be able to have free reserves after that, so I’m saving all the ones that I own for later on. Otherwise, I’m not sure. I might try and find another longer one to get through. Any particular suggestions? Hopefully I will have read another five by the next update, which should be in two weeks. If I keep going at that rate, then I’ll hopefully catch up to my target.

There you have it! Anyone spot a favourite book amongst this bunch? Is there anyone else who didn’t like Bridget Jones’s Diary? Please tell me I’m not the only one.

Arohanui,
Tessa Ann