All that we call human history… [is] the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.
We all have a story. In fact, our stories are written from the day that we are born to the day that we die. While we perceive our story as a comedy, a tragedy, a mystery or chick lit, our story is really a love story from God to us.
Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It is the debut novel and memoir by Jennifer Fulwiler, blogger at Conversion Diary. It tells some of her story, how she spent part of her life searching and seeking for happiness while running from the font of true happiness. How she moved from ardent athiest to taking her place at the feast and becoming Catholic. The book opens with a memory at Bible Camp in which she is pressured into accepting Christ as her Savior (and how she is ostracized for not,) and continues with her rise in the corporate world in which she meets her future husband… who happens to be a Christian and not Catholic, to her internal battle with the illogical notion of how all things are possible through Faith and that sometimes you just have to believe.
This is not your typical “There are no atheists in the trenches” type of conversion story. There are no near death experiences with visions of angels and saints. On the surface it would appear to be a little dull: Mrs. Fulwiler was raised in a middle class home, with two parents. Got a great job after college. Married a handsome man who drove a Jag and their combined income lead to a spacious condo in downtown Austin. On the surface it would seem she had it all. Taking a page from the Scientific Method, Mrs. Fulwiler investigates Christianity in an orderly manner: question, hypothesis, test, results, repeat until her findings not only lead to to belief in and acceptance of Christ but also, together with her husband, union with the Catholic Church.
One of my favorite sections of the book deals with slain rapper Tupac Shakur:
When referring to starry-eyes people who bleat about how God is part of everything, even cancer and slums, Lewis said, “The Christian replies, ‘Don’t talk damned nonsense.’ For Christianity is a fighting religion. It thinks God made the world… But it also thinks that a great many things have gone wrong with the world and that God insists, and insists very loudly, on our putting them right again.” Tupac’s lyrics throbbed with the pain of someone who was aching to join the fight but was never sure where to enlist.
She continues wrestling with the idea of justice and mercy, of the greatness of God’s love for us and our sinful natures, of choices and free will, of heaven, hell and purgatory. Can good come out of evil, can we make bad choices but still be saved?She closes this section by saying:
I slid off the bed and dropped to my knees. I pressed my eyes shut as I waited for a wave of pain to pass through my leg. When it had gone, I folded my hands, leaned my head forward and poured out the most sincere prayer I had ever said, for the soul of Tupac Shakur.
This book made me laugh, choke up a bit and most of all think. I encourage you to grab a copy for yourself and read on! (If you happen to have a Nook, I could lend 2 more people (one at a time) my electronic copy. Email me at karianna (at) bestbibandtuckerblog (dot) com about borrowing my copy!
Have you read #SOTG? Would you read it? What are your thoughts? Comment below!