I've had a string of really good days. Week-ends at my church, preaching (albeit recyled sermons) and doing other worship and pastoral things, then home for the week to rest, teach a little, and grade a lot. My brain seems to have cleared (four hours of anesthesia = four weeks of fog; the rule of thumb seems to be accurate).
It's an up-and-down process, though. After a couple of easy weeks, today's medical procedure has produced hours of relentless pain. X-S Tylenol and narcotics have made barely a dent. If I sleep tonight, it will be the sleep of the utterly exhausted.
I have triumphed in one regard this week, however: I've made it from the beginning to the end of a book! A very small book, but a book nevertheless.
Now, the book is The Christmas Cantata by Mark Schweizer, and I don't quite share my friend Quotidian Grace's enthusiasm for it. It's not a gem of written expression, a lot of both the plot and the character development seem to be missing, and it's pretty sappy. But the truth is, I was laughing so hard that my eyes teared up when the woodpeckers invaded St. Barnabas Church to feast upon the beetles lodging in the styrofoam ornaments. The woodpeckers are responsible for the best lines in the book, including the "doctrinal schism prevented in 1378 when a woodpecker killed the anti-pope and saved the church."
The book is short and entertaining and, truth to tell, would make an excellent Advent gift for anyone in need of some light reading, such as the recently hospitalized. That may not sound like a ringing endorsement, but I'm actually quite grateful to this book for making it possible for me to read again!