Monday, May 5, 2014

Growing Up Born Again

I have no idea where this book came from.  It just kind of appeared in my library and when I saw it, I knew at once that I had to read it.  The cute 50s family on the front was enough to convince me.

I picked up the book, wondering what I was in for.  It turns out, this book is a charming, funny, whimsical look at what growing up in in evangelical Christian, 1950s American family was like and all that that entailed.  I think what most impressed me was the way that the five authors could laugh at that background, but not turn it into ridiculing their childhoods.  I did not grow up in this kind of church, but the story still resonated with me in so many ways.  I think it was in large part because I love reading about this era in America and also because little subsets of people fascinate me.

This book is a very light, quick read and it was perfect for this weekend.  The chapters have titles like, "Holy Bible, Book Divine" (a look at the Born Again family's view of the Bible), "If You're Saved and You Know It", and "I Have Decided to Follow Jesus".  The book is chock full of 1950s and 60s illustrations of church-related subjects.  There are funny pop-quizzes (I'll have you know I scored very high on them) and advice for what to bring to a church supper (jello salad or tuna noodle casserole with potato chips on top).  There is a sample bulletin with notes showing when it is acceptable to shuffle your feet or run to the bathroom and musings on going to church camp.

This book comes highly recommended.  Even if you aren't (or weren't) a BA Christian or even a Christian, this book is extremely funny.  Of course, a few of the references make a little more sense if you have had some experiences like these, but for the most part the book can be enjoyed by anybody.  When I looked online, this book appears to be fairly easy to find, although it looks like it isn't printed anymore.  I found several used copies on amazon and you might be able to find one at your library.  If you know me and want to read this book, I'll be more than happy to loan it to you.  You're sure to enjoy this wonderful book.

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