Keeping in Step with Jesus (Vlog)

In the middle of all that goes into releasing a book and talking about a book and promoting a book**, it’s easy to lose sight of what matters. This entry from Oswald Chambers “My Utmost for His Highest” (October 12th) was encouraging to me; I hope it encourages you. (forgive my cough; of course, as soon as I began to speak, my voice got all scratchy).

 

**Living the Season Well-Reclaiming Christmas

 

 

May, March and April in Books #ReadUpstream

In keeping with the inauguration of the #ReadUpstream movement, I’m going to speak a little about what I’ve been reading and maybe entice you to do your own reading ‘upstream’; i.e. choosing classics and good books that speak to your heart, even if no one else is reading them. More about the origin of #ReadUpstream is here.

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When it comes to those things that bring me joy, I’m not sure whether I fancy birds or books more. Perhaps equally. I have books with ‘birds’ in the title melding those two—a love of reading and a fascination with my avian friends. There is much I learn from both—life lessons from the birds, echoing God’s message of carefree, trust-filled living and lessons in the lines of the many books that populate my home.

I often am reading many books at one time, which is why the title of this post is “March, April and May in Books.” There are many books that continue to engage me, but I will attempt to whittle down the list to include some of my current favorites.

  1. Fierce Convictions—The Life of Hannah More—Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist, Karen Swallow Prior

I first learned the name of Hannah More in the film ‘Amazing Grace’ (2006) about William Wilberforce and his campaign against the slave trade. There was a small part played by a feisty young woman named Hannah, whose name I catalogued for later. The later arrived with the release in 2014 of this book by Karen Swallow Prior, Professor of English at Liberty University.

Hannah More’s life was set in the backdrop of Bristol, England in the early 1700’s, a historical period that was the height of the slave trade in Europe. I’ve only just begun reading how Hannah and her sisters started a school for women, an outright novelty for the day and age, as well as learning of the unheard of practice for her to spend time–imagine this–writing in a place of her own-mostly poetry. This particular privilege was made possible by the allowance of kind benefactor who was a previous suitor.

Hannah and I have much in common—a love of writing and reading and a background in education. Of course, the part we don’t share is an experience in opposing the slave trade. That tale is ahead of me in this book and I look forward to reading it.

Continue reading “May, March and April in Books #ReadUpstream”

Neat Little Package

I wrote this poem on the January day in 2003 when my first grandson, Hanan Samuel, was born. 
This week he turned 9….I wanted to share this to honor him.
              

Your birth today unequivocally proved

that science still can do nothing

at explaining the miraculous.

The day you came into the world

the university physicists claimed to

be pursuing an explanation of gravity.

an unseen force, it defies definition actually

They lamented that “it can’t exactly be pinned down” and

“doesn’t act in a way that science can explain.

It has been said that “nothing important is completely explicable.**”

Indeed, your miraculous birth cannot be explained apart from God,

your creation cannot be contained.

Though swaddled tightly now,

you will not be confined to a neat little package.

Your long, wiggling fingers will noodle on a keyboard some day,

Your legs will flail in the ocean waves,

Your daddy-sized feet will carry you into the unknown,

You will fall, you will climb, you will think and create.

We will sit back and watch, observe and record

As you unfold from this neat little package.

 

Hanan Samuel Collins, Age 8
Multnomah Falls, OR
**Madeline L’Engle