Monday, October 12, 2009

three cups of inspiration

I'm not good at carving out time for reading. I have the time, I simply get distracted or interrupted by other things, and I have not managed to make reading a priority. Thus it took me several months to read, and finally finish the amazing story that is Three Cups of Tea.

It would probably be an overstatement, at least at this point, to say that the book has changed my life, but it is NOT an overstatement to acknowledge that it has changed me. While reading Greg Mortenson's story of building hope, literally, for villages and families in Pakistan (and eventually, Afghanistan), I found myself at the computer using Google Earth to locate the places where schools were built and lives were transformed. I pay closer attention to the news about both countries, and yesterday I even sat through an online video documentary about a girl and her family whose lives were interrupted and altered when the Taliban closed her school. Not long ago the headline for the story wouldn't even have caught my eye. I have come to know and care about these faraway places and the people whose lives are anchored to them. I am learning about the core issues of those countries that mutate into political interests and battles. A desire has formed in me to learn more, to become better informed, and somehow, using whatever gifts I have to offer, to make a difference.

At the end of the book there is a brief section that suggests ways to help bring awareness to the story of Greg Mortenson's mission to bring peace to a brutalized place through education, especially for girls. Spreading the word is one such way, through emails, web sites or blogs. So here I am. If you have not already read Three Cups of Tea I encourage you to do so. It is an easy read, beautifully told, and utterly captivating. If you have read the book I am eager to hear how it affected you, and if it led you to some form of "action."

At the very least I encourage all of us to pray for the people of a harsh and beautiful land, and for those working to end oppression and bring enduring peace to that region.


The Bug said...

I read the book several months ago & I'm sad to say that mostly it has just made me pay a little more attention to that part of the world. I especially noted when someone suggested that President Obama donate the Nobel Peace Prize money to Greg Mortensen - I thought that was a great idea!

While reading the book I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop - surely Greg couldn't be the real deal. But he is - with some flaws, yes, but his heart really is with these children.

angela said...

I absolutely loved the book too. It really gave a better picture of the area than any piece on the news.

And I'm sure the guy is classy enough not to begrudge the President his Nobel Peace Prize. After all, he's not about money and politics unless it is to help people. Me, I'm sorry he didn't win it. It takes a long time to start schools in another culture when everyone else is either bombing or killing them.

Jayne said...

I saw him interviewed once on the news, with a profile of his book, and mentally put it on my list of things to read, but have not gotten there yet. It's so hard to change centuries old culture, and patriarchal societies especially, like things just the way they have been for those long centuries. No threat from women to challenge men for authority. It's an uphill battle for sure. I salute Greg for his passion in changing the belief system.

Janet M said...

The book sounds really good, our gdd just spent 6 mos in Sir lanka writting about the problems with women there I'm sure it's one I should pick up for her if she hasn't read it already.

Jules said...

We read this book in Book Club and everyone loved it. Did you get my email...shirts are in the mail!

Jan said...

I haven't read this book yet, but know I should. My two daughters have already read it, as well as numerous friends. Thanks for another nudge.

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