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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Million Miles...

Donald Miller’s famous Blue Like Jazz hit the New York Times Best Seller List in 2006. However, I enjoyed A Million Miles in a Thousand Years even more. It opens with an interesting premise, as two hotshot Hollywood moviemakers decide to make a film about Miller’s life and begin “editing” his real experiences into a better “story” that will create the proper tension and excitement to appeal to their audience.

Of course, this forces Miller to wonder if he shouldn’t be living a better story on his own. Using the techniques of narrative structure, Miller takes a hard look at his life, past, present, and future, and decides it is time to begin living a story that will matter and make a difference. Through the pages of the book, he contacts his father for the first time, he bikes across country, he starts a nonprofit organization, and he finally goes after the girl.

In chapters such as “The Elements of a Meaningful Life,” “Imperfect is Perfect,” “A Character Is What He Does,” and “An Inciting Incident” Miller allows us to join in his quest towards creating a better existence. His experiences challenge the reader to not only face, but to invite obstacles and struggles into their lives as a source of transformation. He encourages them to take the time to create memorable scenes and to see the beauty in tragedy. The parallels in this book hit home and encouraged the reader to want to live a better story as well, while keeping in mind that in real life, our stories don’t resolve here on earth.

As usual, this book of Miller’s draws from his actual experiences and reflections, tying them together with truths that are both spiritual and yet incredibly practical. His style is engaging and personal. He provides many poetic moments along with plenty of humor. I highly recommend this book.


  1. Delighted to meet you today. I hope you don't mind if I splash around a bit to get to know you. This looks like a refreshing place to dip my toes.


  2. Sarah, after a quick peek at your blog, I think you'd enjoy some of my more spritual posts. See especially the ones under "Inspiration," "Postmodernism," and "Christianity." I will also be posting a series on inner healing soon.