Friday, December 14, 2007

Another Rant

Last week at a book sale a woman told me that she uses my books as devotionals.
Horrified, I said, "What??"
Yes, she reads a chapter every morning. They're just so thoughtful and deep, you know.

Ok, time for another rant.
If you ever venture into a Christian bookstore, you will see that devotionals are big business. And if you go to a Christian writers conference, you will find out that devotionals are a great way to break into writing and lots of people are writing them. It can be assumed that lots of people are reading them as well.

I have contributed a few meditations to a devotional book for new moms called The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, so I am not opposed to all devotionals in all forms.

However, I think we should first and foremost be reading the Bible itself, and devotionals should be reserved for those times when you need something pre-chewed and pre-digested, such as when you're sick and/or pregnant, or you have a new baby, or you're travelling and don't have time alone, or you have SAD and can't think, or you need something uplifting to read in the bathroom.

The Bible is meant to be read, after all, and the Holy Spirit has something to say to you, today. If you read a devotional of mine, you'll find out what that passage said to me, but why not find out what it says to you?

You are capable of this, you know. Which leads to another rant for another day: you are capable of more than you realize, such as subtracting numbers without using a calculator, sharing your testimony with a ladies' group, and teaching the kids at school about art or money management or Anabaptist history or maps or cars or sewing or something else you're passionate about but don't yet realize you are.

But whatever you do, pleeeeeeease don't use my books as devotionals. It's like using your teeth to unscrew the Worcestershire sauce bottle cap: that's not what they were made for.

Quote of the Day:
(found in an old church-purse notebook)
Amy is so nice,
I bet she's eating rice
becaus she likes to munch,
then she will go crunch crunch.
wrighten by Jenny Smucker age 6


  1. I totally agree. It boggles my mind that someone would use your book as a devotional!

  2. I grant said rant to be grand.

    Which being interpreted is, I agree.

    (If this posts twice, sorry.)

  3. Thank you for speaking the truth and reminding us to desire the meat of God's Word...the time for craving milk should be infancy SHORT, not life-long as it is for a lot of modern day believers.

  4. Ok... I hear ya dorcas, and I see your point, but the 1st anonymous didn't seem to nice about it.(in my opinion)

  5. To the last anonymous--I know what you mean, and I have to admit that when I read the first anon's comment something defensive rose up in me like, "Well! I mean it COULD maybe be a devotional, after all"....even tho I had just said I was horrified at the idea. The Dutch word for this is ivvah-tsveich. Cross-ways, or something. Or just female.

  6. I thought the 1st anon was just talking "tongue in cheek"! ...envision that one will you :D

  7. Thanks for the encouragement to us to dig for "ourselves". Often we are to lazy to do this!
    Keep up your wonderful writing! I fear I am addicted to it!

  8. "You are capable of more than you realize." Amen. Especially so if spokent to Mennonite women in general. ;)

    Thanks for the reminder to make the Word personal.

  9. Right on Dorcas! Sometimes durng a hard time my heart & mind just aren't up to "meat", but by & large, the Bible should be our first choice of a How-To-Book for our lives. -PC in VA

  10. Thanks for the encouragment. I must admit that I got to the end of the day a few times without having had my personal devotions and I just HAD to read another chapter in your book and I quieted my conscience with the thought that this COULD be a devotional! I feel like God used this blog as another nudge to do what He has been asking me to do - spend more time in His Word.