A Bit 'o Random Musings on Politics, Religion, and Anything Else That Passes Through My Crazy Head

Monday, February 28, 2011

Book Report - Part Two: Saga of Austen Continues

This month I actually finished TWO books, but I'll only share one of them here.  I just finished a book about Jane Austen written by a single evangelical Christian woman, it was an interesting perspective on Austen, and on life.  The book is "A Walk With Jane Austen" by Lori Smith.  It's an autobiographical account of a woman's travel through the places Jane Austen lived and walked.

The author perfectly expresses some of the same angst that Mormon single women sometimes experience when they get older and are still unmarried.  Plus, I just love Jane Austen, and I'm going to England in May, so it was a fun book to read to see where I should visit to walk in Jane's shoes.  One of my favorite parts was a prayer that she quotes which Jane Austen herself wrote:

Look with Mercy on the Sins we have this day committed, and in Mercy make us feel them deeply, that our Repentance may be sincere, & our resolutions stedfast of endeavouring against the commission of such in future. Teach us to understand the sinfulness of our own Hearts, and bring to our knowledge every fault of Temper and every evil Habit in which we have indulged to the discomfort of our fellow-creatures, and the danger of our own Souls. May we now, and on each return of night, consider how the past day has been spent by us, what have been our prevailing Thoughts, Words, and Actions during it, and how far we can acquit ourselves of Evil. Have we thought irreverently of Thee, have wedisobeyed Thy commandments, have we neglected any known duty, or willingly given pain to any human being? Incline us to ask our Hearts these questions Oh! God, and save us from deceiving ourselves by Pride or Vanity. 

If you've ever read any Jane Austen, you know that she was very good at pointing out the pride and vanity in the world, and gently chiding us for it.  I thought this was a beautifully composed prayer that really expresses the meaning of daily repentance and self-evaluation.

My goal for March is another two books: both about the heritage of American women, one by a liberal columnist and the other by a conservative Senator!  Happy Women's History Month!

(You can read the full prayer and one other one here: http://acacia.pair.com/Acacia.Vignettes/Two.Evening.Prayers.html)

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