The Warren & the World is Story Warren’s weekly newsletter, providing a round-up of our favorite things from around the web as well as a review of what was on our site over the past week. We’re glad you’re here!
Around the Web
Your Weakness Is Not Meaningless
John Bloom writes at Desiring God blog to remind us of God’s purposes in our weaknesses.
- God has given you so many limitations because he loves you.
If you’re like most people, you don’t feel loved by your limitations. You feel confined, stunted, trapped, and exposed by them. You feel discouraged by how weak you are and how many things you can’t do well or at all. You might even be tempted to resent God for equipping you with what looks like a stingy allotment of abilities.
Ultimate Critical Thinking Cheat Sheet
- Want to exercise your critical thinking skills? Ask these questions whenever you discover or discuss new information.These are broad and versatile questions that have limitless applications.
Why the British Tell Better Children’s Stories
- If British children gathered in the glow of the kitchen hearth to hear stories about magic swords and talking bears, American children sat at their mother’s knee listening to tales larded with moral messages about a world where life was hard, obedience emphasized, and Christian morality valued. Each style has its virtues, but the British approach undoubtedly yields the kinds of stories that appeal to the furthest reaches of children’s imagination.
7 Books for Your Tween Girl’s Journey to Womanhood
At Club 31 Women, Caroline has a list of books which can be friends for your daughter’s journey into young womanhood.
- When I was a girl, I had a special place I called The Bower.
Really, it was just a Wisteria shrub that had grown over an old clothesline near an overgrown flower bed in our backyard. I thought it was enchanting, and many times I slipped through the tendrils and branches to sit inside with a notepad, sketchpad or good book.
When I was a teenager, that Wisteria shrub was cut down.
Little did I know as a “tween,” but Wisteria is meant to have beautiful, fragrant blooms. Our Wisteria was never meant to be planted in such a shady place, had never bloomed, and could never truly thrive there.
Growing up is sort of like that.
Around the Warren
My Mother’s Letters, Part II
Helena Sorensen follows up last week’s words to her son with a set of letters to her daughter.
- I taught high school before I had my children. During the course of a day, I saw maybe 150 students, some of them studying World History, others American Lit, and some singing in choirs and ensembles. At the end of my third year of teaching, I got it into my head to write a letter to each of my students.
It wasn’t anything special, nothing grand or extravagant. The letters were brief, the first paragraph giving a personal message and the second a general one. I used cheap white paper. There were no envelopes. Yet in the years since I left my teaching job, I have heard from students and parents again and again about the impact of those letters. I wrote a measly three or four sentences to tell each young man and woman that I saw him or her apart from the whole, as someone worthy of notice, and many of those students keep their ratty old letters in places of honor.
Different, by Sally and Nathan Clarkson
Gina Smith reviews Sally and Nathan Clarkson’s new book, Different.
- There is something so lovely about reading a parenting book that is co-written by parent and child. While the unquestionable affection and mutual respect Sally and Nathan Clarkson have for one another is palpable in their new book, Different, it also feels like an authentic depiction of their experience.
While every parent wonders if they are getting it right, having a child that doesn’t quite fit “the mold,” I daresay, magnifies those doubts.
In this book about an outside-the-box kid and the mother who loved him, there is no candy coating. The road was undeniably bumpy. But for all the difficult moments, this mother and son communicate a distinct, underlying hope that every parent needs in extra doses. The assurance that we are not alone, even on our own unique journeys, is both valuable and comforting.
Something to Do with Your Kids
February is Black History Month in the US, and it’s a good time to begin exploring the ways African Americans have contributed to our society. I recommend continuing this exploration throughout the year–and exploring the contributions of all of the different minority groups that are part of the larger American culture. We are a people made of many peoples, and there is much to learn from one another.
And Something to Watch
I have a couple of friends who have worked in Antarctica for a few seasons. Their stories have boggled my mind sometimes–it is a wild world they live and work in. This National Geo video explores the ways that future Mars colonization will likely look like what’s already happened in Antarctica.
Thank you for reading. We’re on your side.