Being 'Still' with Lauren F. Winner
The author of 'Girl Meets God' writes on losing God and the curious path to find Him again
Lauren F. Winner is a writer whose fans expect a certain level of candor. She let us in on her steps from Judaism to Christianity in Girl Meets God. She made a practical, purposeful stand for chastity in Real Sex. Much like her contemporaries, Donald Miller and Anne Lamott, Winner knows how to write Christian memoir-ish books that appeal to everyone without glossing over the less than graceful moments. Her latest offering, Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis, is no exception.
In Still, Winner shares about the tumbling that she took on her spiritual walk following tragic losses (most notably, the death of her mother and her subsequent divorce). It’s the story of how she regained the footing of her faith. Think of it as a domesticated Eat Pray Love -- only far less glamorous and much more relatable. Her preface says it all:
This is a book about God moving away at the same time that God took away the ground. First goes this. Then goes this. Gone are mother, marriage, the confidence of conversion. Then a small light dots the dark hills. And then two.
As a reader, you walk with Winner as she details all of her detours and derailments. You sit beside her as she makes the acquaintance of loneliness and recognizes the best way to deal with anxiety is to keep it at bay for 15 minutes at a time. You understand her sentiments when a friend comes to bless Winner's home and she says that she'd prefer an exorcism instead. You feel like you relearn the art and gift of prayer with her. Essentially, you get a real sense of what Winner went through, entirely because she allows you to. Her writing is soft and vulnerable, yet blunt and veracious.