Author: Anne Lamott
Synopsis: “Anne Lamott claims the two best prayers she knows are: “Help me, help me, help me” and “Thank you, thank you, thank you.” She has a friend whose morning prayer each day is “Whatever,” and whose evening prayer is “Oh, well.” Anne thinks of Jesus as “Casper the friendly savior” and describes God as “one crafty mother.” Lamott’s faith isn’t about easy answers, which is part of what endears her to believers as well as nonbelievers. Against all odds, she came to believe in God and then, even more miraculously, in herself. As she puts it, “My coming to faith did not start with a leap but rather a series of staggers.”
Why I can’t live without this book: Oh friends. It’s kind of mean on my part to put two of my favorite authors back to back, because you’re not allowed to disagree with me. I mean, you can, but it’ll question the very foundation of our relationship. So, humor me with this book: Traveling Mercies gave me permission to just be me. Anne Lamott gave me permission to love Jesus and act irreverent and love humor deeply, all at the same time. This book – which I’ve read no less than ten times, I’m sure – made me want to tell stories and be a writer and get my butt in the chair, as hard as it is sometimes. Read Traveling Mercies, and you’ll come to know me just a little bit better.
(One of my) favorite quotes: “I don’t know why life isn’t constructed to be seamless and safe, why we make such glaring mistakes, things fall so short of our expectations, and our hearts get broken and out kids do scary things and our parents get old and don’t always remember to put pants on before they go out for a stroll. I don’t know why it’s not more like it is in the movies, why things don’t come out neatly and lessons can’t be learned when you’re in the mood for learning them, why love and grace often come in such motley packaging.”
So, Traveling Mercies: can you live without it? Is Anne Lamott your spirit animal, or are you just like, “No way, man. Give me some Nicholas Sparks”? (If so, you may want to retire from reading these posts right about …now).
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