Grace (Eventually) is the third Lamott book I’ve read and I’ve continued to enjoy them. I read one review that said it was just more of the same, and I think in some ways they are right, but where that reviewer saw it as a negative, I didn’t feel that way. Lamott’s writing is about her life and so it’s no surprise when she talks about her son, the difficulties of parenting, her relationship with her mother, life at her church and stories about hiking. It isn’t an international spy thriller, but that’s not the point. Lamott, let’s you into the day to day in her life so that you can see the depth of value and meaning in the day to day of your own life. I feel more in tune with the little things happening around me after every chapter I read of Lamott’s writing.
She also hit’s up some tough issues and offers her perspective in an honest way, telling her story, not necessarily arguing a point or a side, just sharing her experience. I wish we (Christians particularly) felt more free to do that. To share, without fear of condemnation, our experience. Lamott is an extremely courageous woman for sharing the stories and life experiences that she shares. I hope just a little of that wears off on me.
Here are some quotes I enjoyed:
“This culture’s pursuit of beauty is a crazy, sick, losing game, for women, men, teenagers, and with the need to increase advertising revenues, now for pre-adolescents, too. We’re starting to see more anorexic eight- and nine-year-olds. It’s a game we cannot win. Every time we agree to play another round, and step out onto the court to try again, we’ve already lost. The only way to win is to stay off the court. No matter how much of our time is spent in pursuit of physical beauty, even ot great success, the Mirror on the Wall will always say, “Snow White lives,” an this is in fact a lie – Snow White is a fairy tale. Lies cannot nourish or protect you. Only freedom from fear, freedom from lies, can make us beautiful, and keep us safe. There is a line I try to live by, spoken at the end of each Vendata service: ‘And may the free make others free.”
Of course , some days go better than others.
Let’s start with something easy: To step into beauty, does one have to give up on losing a little weight? No, of course not. Only if you’re sick of suffering. Because if you cannot see that you’re okay now, you won’t be able to see it if you lose twenty pounds. It’s an inside job.” -p.74
Lamott has a way of writing these amazing lines that make me crack up. Here is one talking about her friend who ended up marrying a guy who was basically a jerk.
“The polite answer to why Nell married him is: Nell settled. This happens with one’s coolest girlfriends, who sometimes mate with people not worthy to drink their bath water, and I mean that in a warm and nonjudgmental way.” -p.128