My hope is to offer encouragement to writers as well as those who simply love to read. You will find eclectic snippets here—news of projects I’m working on, comments regarding books I enjoy, favorite authors, quotes, and reflections regarding my own experiences. I especially like to write about my dreams—those parables in the night seasons. Symbols and metaphors delight and intrigue me. You will find them here.
In Revelation 3:20, Jesus speaks: Behold, I'm standing at the door, knocking. If your heart is open to hear my voice and you open the door within, I will come in to you and feast with you, and you will feast with me.~The Passion Translation
Today my emotions were flat. I did not feel physically energetic. Yet I wanted to practice rejoicing, practice thanksgiving, even when I had no real enthusiasm. I began to think about where I could begin to rejoice. I thought of my own salvation, when I'd "opened the door." When I believed in what Jesus did for me. Sacrificed His life, then rose from the dead. Resurrection. The sheer joy I felt believing this truth, knowing that to believe was not about being a better person or being good enough, but rather receiving forgiveness and receiving His death and resurrection as a gift. Grace. The complete mystery and beauty of His grace. I am a steward of this mystery.
I thought, what if Jesus knocked at my door today, what would I want to say to Him. Show Him. I thought I'd first take Him to my study. I'd say, "I have many symbols of You here. I can come to this room where I write and look around, and can begin to open my mouth in praise. I'd point to the photograph of a woman, her back to the camera, gazing out to sea. "Lord, the ocean breathes your power to me. When I'm by the water and smell the salt and hear the sound of the waves, it's as if I hear your voice.
I wonder what she may have experienced. Mary Magdalene. That first Easter morning. She'd seen the stone rolled away, and the other disciple observed the linen cloth abandoned. Mary stood outside the tomb crying. Did she notice anything different, before she dared look into the empty tomb? Did the morning light appear more radiant? Did a warm breeze graze her wet cheeks? Could she hear the whisper of leaves? She bent to look in, and two angels asked, "Why do you weep?" Did she place a hand over her chest, her heartbeat accelerated and wildly thumping? Was she hallucinating? Two angels robed in white? Did she quickly swipe away the tears and look again? She answered, "They took my Master, and I don't know where they put Him."
She turned around and saw a man standing there, but she didn't recognize him. "Mary," he said. She knew His voice. She must have shouted, her own voice ragged with awe, when she exclaimed in Hebrew, "Rabboni!" She believed and clung to Him. When He gently asked her to let go, did His touch leave the fragrance of resurrection and miracles on her skin? When she ran back to tell the disciples that she'd seen and touched Him, was she laughing now, tears of joy spilling down her face?
Just trust your own voice. And keep exploring the things that are interesting to you.~Nikki Giovanni
Recently, an individual who heard I wrote books asked, "How long have you been writing? How do you do it?"
"I don't remember a time when I've not written...or been reading," I answered. "Reading is my partner in writing."
I thought it might be helpful to share some authors I enjoy, as well as a tool I employ while reading to add fuel to my writing life...
I'LL READ ANYTHING BY THESE AUTHORS (IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER)
The dream gave Paul his map.~Acts 16:9
I hadn't been able to shake the dream. It was a disturbing dream. I'd found a wailing baby that I could not comfort. A child so exhausted that she could not rest. "God, what do I make of this?" I prayed.
Days mounted into weeks, and I forgot about the dream until I ran across a phrase in Acts. "The dream gave Paul his map." Who is this baby, God? What does she need? How am I to comfort this child? Am I the one to comfort her? More days go by, and there is silence from God. A stillness. I am attracted to this calm and find I am swallowed up inside it. I sense God's comfort and compassion. "You've been exhausted almost all of this year. You've written about your fatigue in your journals, your blogs. You are the disconsolate child. I want peace and rest for you." I asked, "So what do I do about my wailing, Lord? My struggle? What is next?"
More silence. More stillness. I stay inside this circle of peace. While looking for a book on the side table by my bed, I discover a greeting card welcoming a new baby that I never sent sandwiched in the stack. Photographs of precious sleeping babies are on the front of the card. I think, "This complete giving over to rest and peace is what God wants for me. Be as little children."
You are the books you read, the films you watch, the music you listen to, the people you meet, the dreams you have, the conversations you engage in. You are what you take from these. You are the sound of the ocean, the breath of fresh air, the brightest light and the darkest corner. You are a collective of every experience you have had in your life. So drown yourself in a sea of knowledge and existence. Let the words run through your veins and let the colours fill your mind.~Jac Vanek
I learned a new word this week. Syzygy (siz-i-jee)--"An alignment of three celestial objects, i.e., the sun, the earth and either a moon or planet." This word intrigued me, and I began to contemplate what its definition might mean for my life.
The first alignment that came to light for me--Father, Son, Holy Spirit. The Trinity. Then I thought about what three principles the Trinity uses to keep me aligned: