Wednesday, January 13, 2010

My First Book, Perhaps

I am a writer. Sometimes I feel I was born to write. That is my sincere truth. Have I paid any bills or earned any portion of my living with my writing? Not many. Not exactly. Yet I haven't given up, though I continue to pay my way through life with other employment. There is some wisdom in that. My dream and efforts to become a published author lives on.

Yesterday, while sorting through some items in storage from my childhood. I came across a tiny little book. One and five eighths of an inch square to be specific. The title of the book is Mr. Worm Goes Swimming, and the inside cover states "By Cynthia Remington." That is me!

I wrote, illustrated, and self-published this book back in 1960's, while in my elementary school years no doubt. I wrote on index cards and trimmed them to that small size. I wrote the text on the lined side and drew and colored illustrations on the blank sides. This tiny book is twelve pages in length, has a simple, yet suspenseful, little plot line and pleasant resolution. My biggest struggle appears to be planning the cover and title page so that the entire word "Swimming" would fit neatly in the space given.

I was deeply touched yesterday when I discovered this work created as a child. I had no memory of it. It affirmed for me my great and long lasting interest in this creative art. Although I have not kept my interest in illustrating my work, I am still an avid doodler to this day.

For the technically minded, I did hand bind the book with one regular size staple.

This mini-book is a treasure and an inspiration.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Quite the Fume Over Brit Hume

I listened to and watched Brit Hume's comments about Tiger Woods. I felt it was transparent and kind, but then I'm an insider, so to speak. I also felt is was awkward in the context of the TV program where it occurred, but life is awkward sometimes. We need to grant each other grace. I was innocently surprised by quite the kerfuffle caused by the comments. Moments like this helps define who the haters are, I guess. By hater, I mean people who are quick to draw a line and lambaste someone without relationship or full context.

I prefer to respond out of kindness. I'll quote Rob Bell about being criticized, "Two words -- love wins." In context, Rob Bell means that he has to walk the loving path and respond in love to his critics. He also means when it comes to making a difference on earth, love will win, and we need to focus. So I need to respond out of love, which means I listen respectively and respectfully to the critics who are quite incensed regarding Hume's open thoughts as shared, and learn their perspectives to better love them. Those critics are also nailing my faith choice, so I need to take a breath and respond in love to them.

I read a Huffington Post article:

Even the headline for that post felt hostile. That writer had a strong negative reaction to Hume's comments, but seems to be doing what Hume is accused of in the article. The writer seemed to write from a bigoted point of view to me.

I read another article from Politics Daily:

It was more balanced in my opinion. I suppose "balanced" means -- more agreeable to me, but all the same, I learned from it. I found it fascinating to read comments on Buddhism from Buddhist authorities. It even provided some background to how Brit Hume came to faith as an adult journalist in Washington, D.C. -- very touching to me. A great example of how the community of faith models love as Christ has loved us. I found that part very interesting. Here is an excerpt from that part in the Politics Daily article:

"Such a horror is not something you ever get over. But you have to go on, and Brit Hume was able to do so, by his own account, because of the people who reached out to him in God's name. Nearly 1,000 sympathy cards arrived, from strangers as well as friends.

'I read them all,' Hume told Christianity Today. 'My mailbox would be stuffed with them night after night. I'd weep over some of them. Some of them were prayer cards, some of them would tell me a tree had been planted somewhere. I felt that I was seeing the face of God. I felt people's support and love. To me it was a miracle. I've been trying to face up to the implications of believing in Christ and believing in God ever since.'

It only stands to reason, then, that out of this crucible, Brit Hume would want to share that miracle with others who are hurting -- with Tiger Woods, for example. And so, channeling Mother Teresa and not Tom Shales, Hume's first duty is to smile, as painful as that must be some days. His second duty, as he sees it, is to share the reason he's able to smile. So why would anyone begrudge him that?"

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Kierkegaard - "Only A Rumor"

I read an article today by Soren Kierkegaard, a Danish philosopher of the 1800's. It is titled "Only a Rumor." I found the simple premise profound and engaging.

In response to Matthew 2:1-4, Kierkegaard states, "Although the scribes could explain where the Messiah should be born, they remained quite unperturbed in Jerusalem. They did not accompany the wise men to seek him. Similarly we may know the whole of Christianity, yet make no movement. The power that moved heaven and earth leaves us completely unmoved."

Kierkegaard continues, "What a difference! The three kings had only a rumor to go by. But it moved them to make that long journey. The scribes were much better informed, much better versed. They sat and studied the Scriptures like so many dons, but it did not make them move. Who had the more truth? The three kings who followed a rumor, or the scribes who remained sitting with all their knowledge?"

This provides a good launch to the new year. I need to seek, not just study. Seeking is active and implies movement. Off I go! The wise men had more than a rumor, according to Scripture. They also had a star to follow. I'll follow.