Telling Secrets Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. As the author's mother aged, she complained about her looks, saying her hair looked like what?

2. In the Introduction, the author tells us that this is his ___ venture into autobiography.

3. In the Introduction, what is the title of the book the author cites as dealing with the interior of his life?

4. Three acts of God mentioned by the author that appear in scripture are the Exodus, the ___, and the entry into the Promised Land.

5. What was the name of the woman who came nights but according to the author's mother was late because of the subway?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the most sacred function of memory?

2. What illness did the author's daughter have and how did it affect her?

3. Why did the author feel like a dwarf as depicted in C. S. Lewis' "The Last Battle?"

4. How did the author's mother's aging affect her sons' lives?

5. Why is the author telling his secrets?

6. How did author's mom respond to his fictionalized version of his father's death and how did her reaction to this fist telling affect the author's writing about the death later?

7. Why/how does the author identify with one of the stained glass images?

8. Why did the author's mother have so few friends as she got older?

9. How does the author describe his father's suicide?

10. How does the author describe God loving us, and loving his daughter?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Part Two of the book, the author talks about the "mystery" of Genesis 1:26-27. What is the "mystery" and how does this relate to what the author calls our deepest, original self? What happens to this original self after the world "does its work?" What does the author mean when he talks about the weather of the world, hats and coats, and "all our other selves?"

Essay Topic 2

Explain what the author means when he writes that by watching and listening we are praying. How does God speak to us in quietness? What is "God's place" in us? What deadens us to God's presence within us? How does Psalm 131 illustrate these points from the author?

Essay Topic 3

The author talks about being as deaf about his family and himself as his mother was, even with a purse full of half or not working hearing aids. The author uses two pieces of stained glass in his office to help readers understand this time in his life. Explain how the author felt he was "deaf" about his life and how he used the stained glass pieces to convey these experiences, thoughts and feelings to readers.

(see the answer keys)

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