Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Matthew 5:14a (NIV) You are the light of the world.
The word ‘inspiration’ always makes me take a slow, deep breath. My eyes close and a smile warms my face. The word always reminds me of the reason I became a writer.
I am a great fan of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series. The third novel, Anne of the Island, finds Anne and her young adult friends facing life’s challenges. Ruby Gillis is a chum who had never given any thought but to her day to day pleasures. Unhappily, Ruby is now dying of consumption. Anne pays her a visit and finds Ruby terrified of death. Ruby’s “soul clung, in blind helplessness, to the only things she knew and loved”. Anne left that meeting a different young woman. I was changed as I read Montgomery’s prose of Anne’s thoughts: “The little things of life, sweet and excellent in their place, must not be the things lived for; the highest must be sought and followed; the life of heaven must be begun here on earth.”
That sentence first inspired me to “the highest” and reinforced my faith. Second, I was consumed with the desire to write in a way that would make people aspire the way I did at that moment. The notion began as a desire and has blossomed over the years into a full blown passion and calling. I will never forget it. Over time I have reread and highlighted many such inspirations in Montgomery’s work as well as many of the Masters and Christian authors. The Word of God is my greatest inspiration.
Keeping that goal in my heart and mind has gotten me over many a writer’s block. I just close my eyes and remember that moment and then ask the Father to help me take my readers to that place of inspiration; the highest.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Anne of Green Gables Essay Contest
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
We took a road trip this weekend to celebrate our grandaughter's first birthday. Don't you love to just get out of town for a spell? It's great to get a break from the daily routine, visit loved ones who live far away, and feast our eyes on some new scenery. This trip went smooth as silk and we had a wonderful time.
It's not always like that, is it? Some road trips are fraught with car trouble, getting lost, or unhappy destinations due to funerals or illness. Either way, a road trip is a picture of our life's journey. Sometimes happy and free from care, other times trouble comes around every bend in the road and we seem to lose our way.
Jesus said "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6). Well, if that's not a road map, I don't know what is. He doesn't promise us a life free of problems, but he does promise direction through faith in him.
Jesus also said, "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." (John 10:10) We are promised an abundant life! Sometimes we can't see or can't feel that we are living an abundant life when we are in the midst of cares and concerns. We are encouraged through the Word that we can "Cast all your cares on him for he cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7).
On our journey, whether good times or bad, we can trust the Savior to care for us and give us direction. We can look ahead, cast our daily cares on him, and look down the road for new life. Have a wonderful day. Jody
Thursday, August 18, 2011
I'm a sucker for an acronym. Don't you just love a handle that you can remember when you need it? Here's one I needed for this fact of life: drama.
We all have it. Or course, we don't start it (ahem), but we sure bob in the wake of it when someone else does. It can be pretty disconcerting and disrupting, discouraging and stressful.
So I was thinking about it and the Father blessed me with a handle. Hope it helps you, too.
D = Do your best to calm the waters. What's the best way to do that? Stay out of it and don't talk about it. "Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down." (Proverbs 26:20) and "Like one who grabs a stray dog by the ears is someone who rushes into a quarrel not their own." (Provergs 26:17) If the drama directly involves you, then add:
R = Rest in your position: your biblically based, Holy Spirit led, prayed up position. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." (Proverbs 3: 5-6) You may find in your praying that you have played a part in the drama, the cause of the trouble. If so then add:
A = Acknowledge your wrong. Confess, repent, ask forgiveness and make restitution if need be. "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."(1 John 1:9). If that doesn't diffuse the situation, then add:
M = Maintain your peace. Don't let the drama be yours, mine, and ours. If folks persist in living in upheaval, then let it be theirs. "You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you." (Isaiah 26:3) In any case, add:
A = Always forgive. Whether they ask for it or not, always walk in an attitude of forgiveness. Matthew 6:14: "For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you."
Remember, however: "Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm." Proverbs 13:20. (Birds of a feather...uh huh.)
Every theatrical production starts the same way. Someone creates it. Don't let it be you. "...make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business..." (1 Thess. 4:11) Now there's a novel idea!