Thursday, July 9, 2009

Neither Extreme

Today, I'm speaking to a group of Christian librarians who are attending a conference here at HU. I was asked to discuss two things:

1. the Twilight series, and

2. blogging about books

Sounds easy enough, right? Those of you who've read my earlier posts on Twilight know what I think about the series, at least from a literary standpoint. And you also know I love blogging about books. All in all, I'm expecting this to be an enjoyable speaking engagement for me.

As I started thinking about what I would say today, I realized that we, as Christian teachers of literature and Christian librarians, are in a really interesting position. We actually embody the best of two worlds. Like all teachers of English and all librarians, we love the idea of books opening up new worlds for us and our students. We encourage exposure to challenging ideas, and we promote critical thinking. We celebrate free access to the books of our choice.

Yet, as Christians, we also recognize that discernment is necessary. We love to read, but we want to protect our minds and to "guard our hearts with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life" (Prov. 4:23).

Luckily for us, it's possible to reconcile both positions--and we don't have to ban any books to do so. Discerning readers can indulge their love of reading, expand their horizons, and strengthen their Christian worldview, while also developing compassion for those who don't see the world exactly as we do. And we can help our students learn to do the same.

1 comment:

lisa b said...

I have the coolest friends in the world.

You are one of them!