Hot and dry...parched people. Life barely moving. Oh, my people--sin piled on sin, pain multiplying in the wake of greed and lust; tears evaporating before they hit the dust. Dry lifeless eyes--past hope, numb endurance; another day, another moment.
Thunder in the Desert: The earth heaves, the heart of God splits open. Wrath and anguish, anger and compassion combine in a might roar: "Let Justice roll in like a flood." Turn, turn from your violence, your abuse of power, your torment of the poor, the weak and vulnerable.
Thunder in the Desert; the Calvary coming to the rescue. Flying hoofs heard from afar. No more, no more will young girls be trapped in prostitution, no more will people be slaughtered as they huddle in churches, no more will children be sold into slavery or killed in the streets. The Lord is coming. The Lord is coming. Repent.
The above piece was written in the first session of "Making a Mark;" written under the influence of GOOD NEWS ABOUT INJUSTICE, which I had just finished reading. Here is what Stephanie wrote to me about the book:
"There's an amazing book by Gary A. Haugen called GOOD NEWS ABOUT INJUSTICE. 'Injustice' is a word that gets bandied about. We don't realize we've never really had a succinct definition. The amount of Scripture on the issue is mind-boggling. I've never seen a book quite like this. Author Gary Haugen is an international lawyer and works with both missionaries and the State Department. Anyway, my copy was borrowed but Maureen has one."
My copy has NOT been borrowed, and I ordered in several more. $12. Stephanie, Maureen, Mariposa and a host of other undoubtedly fine women have formed a local chapter of WOMEN OF VISION, dedicated to doing their bit to help hurting women and children through out the world. It's amazing how a little from us, can be life-changing in other parts of the world. If you're interested contact Maureen Thrash (831) 728-1622 or [email protected]
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." -George Bernard Shaw, writer, Nobel laureate (1856-1950)
Another fine woman is Debra Spencer. After reading the first poem in her just published book, POMEGRANATE, I had to go write in my journal about "wandering ineffectively about the living room with a dust rag." Needless to say, effectiveness would be heightened by moving books from coffee table to footstool WITHOUT pausing to read them. The next evening I plucked the (dust free) book from where it rested spine out with six other 'read in bits' books and savored three more poems.
I wanted to read more, but it would be like eating a third chocolate eclair. Better to wait, I thought. Better to sip slowly like a fine wine. I flipped to the back of the book and read about the author...even though I've KNOWN the author since before I walked her now twenty-something daughter up the street by the church singing the Gloria scat style to calm the fuss that had brought the baby out of the church and into my arms.
It was the best about-the-author I've ever read. Turning to the acknowledgments I discovered there, in the midst of a list of "writers," was my name. Spelled right, even. Strangely even MORE endeared to the book, I decided to order another five. There are people I could give it to. If you don't like poetry, try it. If you DO like poetry, it's a must read. If you know Debra and you haven't bought a copy, shame on you. Friends buy books. (Good to form these little habits before MY books are published.) $12
Read more. Dust Less.
I put POMEGRANATE back next to 131 CHRISTIANS YOU SHOULD KNOW which Laura has been waiting for these past two months. I'm only up to 73. Reading about Great Christians alternately encourages and discourages me. A one-two punch. Evangelical churches should have a 'saints calendar' too. Get a jump on knowing the people you're spending eternity with. Frankly, they're a really odd bunch.
Another odd bunch are found in GREAT WOMEN AUTHORS by Jane Stuart Smith and Betty Carlson. These two author/musicians live and work in L'Abri Fellowship in Switzerland. Their book covers many greats: Alcott, Brontes, Browning, Cather, Dickenson, Eliot, O'Connor, Potter, Sayers, Rosetti, Stein, Stowe, Warton... The short biographies give a taste of each woman's life, in many cases showing the ties the authors had with other Christians in their respective times. Someone should snatch up this $4 copy right away! (Right away when I'm finished with it!)
Toasty Bit from Teresa: "Prepare for the worst, hope for the best, and run with what you have!"
I picked up THE AFTERWORD out of a box because I am inordinately fond of small hardbacks and the orange and black cover intrigued me. Turns out it is a first novel by Mike Bryan. The action is around an author who is explaining his runaway best seller novel, "The Deity," a story about a man in New York, who happens to be divine. The protagonist is clearly a skeptic, but he references the Gospels often while explaining why he made certain choices in developing the main character in his hit novel. Aside from one idiotic comment about the difference between 'Catholics and Protestants,' the references ring true. I suspect this is a stealth book. But maybe not. I thought I'd write you about it before I found out for sure. Find out for yourself. $16 new. This copy will be either $2 or $7, depending on how much I like the ending.
"...We are the body of Christ, we hold
his body in our hands as the dead rustle among us
like rain or wind and the host
spreads in our limbs like wine." From "Feast of All Saints" by Debra Spencer