Ever since I was very, very young, I’ve wanted to be a writer. I was mesmerized by books, and loved everything about them: new book smell, the feel of the pages between my thumb and index fingers, old book smell, finding the string in a sewn binding. I especially loved the title page, with the author’s name in print that couldn’t be erased, unlike my name in hand-made books at school.
That’s what I want to be, I thought. I want to be an author. I want my name in a book like Ezra Jack Keats and Madeline L’Engle. And then I went on to be a librarian, happy to work with books and get people excited about them. My dream still lived, but I tucked it away for some nebulous future time.
Then life brought me to Forward Movement. And through the years, slowly and surely, my dream became reality. Very, very recently, I’ve finally claimed it: I’m a writer.
Writing keeps me close to my girls, and helps us build our family’s faith life. The practice of being a writer deepens my personal relationship with God, Jesus, and Spirit, which brings me into a closer relationship with my girls. Working on and living my dream helps them to see that I value myself and my goals. They learn that adults are not finished products, but works in progress with no due date.
Lots of my writing involves the girls. They’re often the subjects, sometimes they’re a focus group, and they’re always critics. Whenever I feel like I have nothing to say, I think about life with them. That’s a deep well of untold stories waiting to be dipped and drank.
Here’s a meditation I wrote from one of the books in the Grow Christians giveaway, For the Beauty of the Earth: Daily Devotions Exploring Creation. I hope you’ll enter the giveaway by completing the survey – your opportunity to let us know how Grow Christians can be better than ever in 2018.
Daaaad, there’s a spider. Come get it!
Oh no, there are ants in the kitchen again!
It’s acceptable for us to appreciate rabbits but not moles. We love bees, but not flies. I’ll post a cute cat video, but please get those raccoons out of my yard. We pick and choose which creatures we like and which ones are pests or unattractive inconveniences. What does God think about that, I wonder?
God has created everything that creeps on the earth, and God makes sure they all have food to eat. This proves that God cares about all of God’s creation, even the scorpions and lantern fish. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder—and in the eye of the Creator we are each and all beheld as beautiful.
As I spend more and more time in nature, I commit myself to caring for all of God’s creatures, even the ones I don’t appreciate or understand. God wants us to care for all of creation, not just the parts we think are worthy or nice or useful to us personally. Imagine the consequences of our society if we decided that some of us were worth taking care of, and some of us weren’t.
As we look toward 2018, we want to learn more about who you are and what’s on your mind. To enter the giveaway, click here and fill out our survey, including your email address at the end so we can notify you if you win.
Anyone is eligible to enter this giveaway. A winner will be selected at random on December 11, 2017 and be contacted by email to provide a USPS address. The winner must provide an address within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen; this will occur until a final winner is announced. So if you enter to win, watch your email on Monday, December 11! The giveaway items will be mailed via USPS the week of the 11th.
All art by Kathrin Burleson.