I spent some time reading this weekend. It was a bit different because I really haven't come across too many books that are "can't put them down" type of books. The last time I can remember reading a book like that was about 5 years ago. However, in the last couple of weeks, I learned about two of them. Since I don't have much stop-at-the-store time and add to that the fact that I don't even LIKE to shop in stores, I ordered them online. They both showed up last Thursday. I read the first one on Friday (Under the Overpass) and finished the second one (The Shack) about 6:15 this morning. The Shack, the one I finished today, I started reading yesterday morning and it touched me so deeply, I was awake at 5AM again today to finish it.
Under the Overpass (http://www.undertheoverpass.com/) is the work of a young man who, with a friend, chose to live homeless for five months. They travel through six different stories and the book is a journal of their time on the streets, their experiences, the people they met, those who helped them and too many who didn't. Some of the response they received will leave you slack-jawed in disbelief, even though you already know how non-Christian Christians can be.
Then there is The Shack. I wish I was more eloquent in my written expression but this book, if you choose to read it, will give you such an incredible volume of "stuff" to think about. It is incredibly difficult to read in some places, I had tears streaming down my face for the last several chapters. It does, however, challenge every (or almost every) thought, perception, idea you have about God - who He is, what we mean to Him and how He, Jesus and the Holy Spirit relate in the Trinity and what They want for us. It's not a "feel good if you only love Jesus" book and it's not a self-help book at all. It's fiction and needs to be read as fiction but its thought-provoking fiction and I, in all of my normal cynicism and pessimism, have yet to figure out how it's "wrong." I have already started reading through it for a second time. It's that good.
One thing I will say, if you choose to read either or both of these books - let me know what you think, what strikes you, what you want to do next, etc. I'm curious to see if anyone is as affected as I have been.