HOW A 90 YEAR OLD LETTER TOUCHED ME
Here is my quick RANT….
I don’t like Leadership books
They are too sterile for me.
That’s probably why I don’t like many academia books They are written from an office not from the battlefield Missionary books do something for me….
Reading the theology of E Stanley Jones or Oswald Chambers from the field means way more to me than the PHD from Cambridge
Dr D Martyn Lloyd-Jones’ writings mean a great deal to me than a Dr from a seminary. He wrote it as he pastored not simply from research.
Boots on the ground writing as an authority to it that academia can’t provide or match.
HOW A 90 YEAR OLD LETTER TOUCHED ME
I would rather read a BIOGRAPHY instead of a LEADERSHIP book
I want to hear the story
I want to know how they processed
I want to extract your thinking from your situation
Where leadership books tell me neatly packaged all with the letter “P” how to guide a corporation
Bios don’t give context for statements
Read ,for example, Eric Metaxas’ book “Bonhoeffer”. The part that was amazing to me is when all of Bonhoeffer’s friends raised a lot of money for him to come to America and be part of Union Theological Seminary. It was a way to get him to teach but also protect him from the height of the Nazi regime that were after him. The moment he landed here he felt the Spirit of God tell him to go back and suffer with his fellow pastors. Wow! How do you deal with that? Especially after all these men saved and provided finances for you to get to America and now you are possibly going to turn around and go back to Germany. See how Bonhoeffer dealt with that. You have been sent by other people’s money to a place that you feel like you should not be. Now what?
THE POWER OF A 90 YEAR OLD LETTER
There is one level greater than bios and those are letters they are raw and unedited
they seem boring at first but when you dig , you get to know the person through their writings
Letters are quick explosions of the heart , that did not have the time to edit out words but these are their real words and real feelings
that is why the letters of C S Lewis have treasures in it for me
and one of those treasures captured my feelings exactly
it was the horrific feeling he had one night without a job, an Oxford invitation, no book has been written yet and he said this on Feb 9, 1923
LETTERS OF CS LEWIS
A couple of things to keep in mind as you read this bout Lewis had with depression
He was born in 1898
So this journal entry is when he is 25 years old
Also, his first book was , Pilgrim’s Regress , wasn’t published till 1933; 10 years later
But he does get the job at Magdalen college in 1925, 2 years later then this entry…..
So when he writes this little letter ….he is “bookless” and “jobless” He is not the CS Lewis we know
He is the CS Lewis in training and on his way to finding God and his destiny
I believe he penned this to Warnie his brother
Read it again and again…
Feb 9, 1923
On getting into bed I was attacked by a series of gloomy thoughts about professional and literary failure–what
Barfield calls it “one of those moments when one is afraid one may not be a great man after all”
“one of those moments when one is afraid one may not be a great man after all”
Oh my goodness. That hit me like a ton of bricks.
I feel this way all the time.
I feel that every challenge, every job, every project, is so much more greater than me.
And the only song that comes to mind is “I need Thee every hour I need Thee.”
Thank you CS Lewis for being honest.
It’s good to know that great men feel this way.
I’m not saying I’m great. I’m saying I feel that way a lot.