Thursday, March 27, 2008

What to Reveal

I’m going through some changes right now. We’re downsizing in preparation for becoming empty nesters. My youngest will fly the coop this coming summer and head off for college. I’ve got a new novel coming out this summer that is more revelatory than even Katrina’s Wings.
In preparation for media interviews, I’ve recently outlined the story of my past deciding which parts to put in and which to leave out, hoping that what I leave in is beneficial and that what I leave out stays left out.

Deciding what parts of the self to show to others is something we women decide all of the time. We evaluate ourselves all of the time too: Should I have confessed that? Will I be judged now that they know?

When I was growing up, there were testimonies floating around that were “tell-all” stories. It seemed that rising stars were trying to one-up each other to prove who had the worst past. The truth is we all have a past. Being authentic is about taking off the mask so that we all see that we’re not perfect. It helps me to judge whether or not I’m growing and maturing to read my own timeline. But sharing authentically should not drag me back into the past so that my mistakes can be picked over. Sharing your story should not exploit you, but simply show that you are a pilgrim like everyone else.
Still, I do it with fear and trepidation.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

What He Came to Do

Setting: Pilate’s Court, just before Christ’s sentencing.
“What is truth?” the Roman procurator, Pilate asked of Christ. In Pilate’s day as in our own society, truth had become nothing short of an opinion. But here the Lord declares His purpose for having left behind the splendor of heaven: to bear witness to the truth. God came to earth to not only define truth, but to hold Himself up as the only legitimate measure for it. Here Jesus stood before a ruler who had set himself up as the authority for all. While haughty authority set out to squash truth, it rose like a glorious song drawing those who would listen to the very heart of God.

“For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”
John 18:37

Excerpted from the Women of Faith Devotional Bible; Patricia Hickman, contributor.

Friday, March 21, 2008

In Memory


Today is Memorial Day for Christians. We remember the life sent from heaven to die on the battlefield of humanity for all of us. Jesus came from his Father’s throne room with marching orders—save them! Then he breathed his last breath and passed on those marching orders to us mortals below—love them. Feed my sheep.

“No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.”

On this, our blessed Memorial Day, a very good Friday, take a moment to reflect on what has been passed on to you to give out to your neighbors. A cup of water, an encouraging word, the Word of Truth. You are the light of the world. Remember and shine.
A song welled up in the singer's heart
(Like a song in the throat of a bird),
And loud he sang and far it rang--
For his heart was strangely stirred;
And he sang for the very joy of song.
With no thought of one who heard.
Within the listener's wayward soul
A heavenly patience grew.
He fared on his way with a benison
On the singer who never knew
How the careless song of an idle hour
Had shaped a life anew.
We thank Thee, dear Father, for the early thoughts of Thy unfailing love.
The clouds darken the sky, and the air is heavy with mist, thus changing the
days plans, but we will not be disturbed or withhold our notes of praise. Help
us to be so receptive that the inner light may shine forth to Thy glory. May our
eyes be anointed and our ears open to the Spirit's leadings that no opportunity
to help or comfort others be unnoted. Hear our cry for the bruised, burdened, imprisoned
souls, especially for those for whom no one else will pray. Remember them with
great tenderness, for Thy mercy is everlasting. The love of Jesus gives hope for all.
Bless His dear name! Amen.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Need For a Happier Ending

Our dear friend and Safehouse contact recently discussed the plight of the victims of human trafficking with an entrepreneur who told her this story: A young Moldavian woman, believing she was getting employment through an American contact, was kidnapped and brought to the states. She was abused and used ten times a day by male clients and beaten by the man who had kidnapped her. She became so disease-ridden she could no longer perform. After another beating, she escaped and contacted a safehouse director who told her how to catch a bus where they would be waiting for her at the trip’s end. But then the man from whom she escaped ran her down. When her bus stopped for a break, the bus driver was paid off and he would not let her back on the bus even though she had a ticket paid all the way through her destination. When the bus drove away, she was abducted again, but this time, beaten to death. She did not make it.

This prompted some dialogue that raised questions about how to better serve the rescue process. Some solutions are in the works to help make the victim’s rescue a safe one.

I’m so sorry to share these types of things. I’d rather talk about parenting or how to be a better writer. But this story brings home the importance of rescue work on behalf of women and children who have been turned into modern day slaves. The sad news is that it’s believed that up to 200 slaves are kept in this manner in every major city here in the U.S.

I want to thank those of you who made our recent endeavors a reality. One day you’ll tell your grandchildren about slavery in America and what you did to help bring it to an end.