Total Eclipse of the Soul

Last week, on my author blog, I posted a copy of an article I wrote for the Foothills Writers Guild’s First Draft Society. My fiancee said it was her favorite thing I have ever written. The Guild president emailed me to say he thought it was the best piece that has ever been submitted to the First Draft Society. I called it “And Evening and Morning Were the First Day… Or Was It the Fourth?” If you have ever been through a Dark Night of the Soul, I think you will relate.

 

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The Commencement Address I Imagine Myself Giving One Day

I wrote this comment on a blog I follow.

Awesome post! Here are few lessons I imagine myself telling if I’m ever asked to give a commencement address at my alma mater. Just an outline at this point.

1. Don’t be generic. God made you unique and gave you unique gifts to offer the world. Offer them, and be proud.
2. If you have enthusiasm for something, pursue it. The word enthusiasm literally means “breathing in God.” If you feel yourself breathing in God in any activity, that’s a big clue to your purpose in life.
3. Follow a career path that allows you to focus on your strengths. Don’t follow a path that’s not right for you just because you think you can make a lot of money at it.
4. Don’t try to change your basic nature. If you are extroverted, don’t force yourself to be an introvert. If you are introverted, don’t force yourself to be an extrovert. Both of them have their advantages. Whatever you are, do something that fits your personality rather than forcing yourself to change.
5. Believe in yourself and believe in the Almighty One. Wait, shouldn’t believing in God come first? That’s what most religious people will tell you. What I’ve learned is, if you don’t believe in yourself, nothing else you believe in will have any power for you.
6. Know yourself. If you don’t know who you are, what you believe in, what your unique gifts are, what your personality is, and what you have enthusiasm for, you won’t be able to follow points 1-5.

Do you think these are good life lessons to pass along?

Announcement and new post

It’s been a while since I’ve posted here, and it might be a while before I post again. I said I wanted to blog about the relationship between faith and depression, but it was a lot of work making sure I had a post worth reading every week. Right now I need to focus on writing that pays. However, if by any chance you are still interested in following me, I will be posting on my author page blog about topics related to my writing career. I hope to post once or twice a month but no guarantees.

I do have a new post there called “J. C. and the 12 O.G.’s.” It compares the early Christians with a gang, which is related to how they survived persecution, which is related to a novel I’m trying to publish that deals with Christians being persecuted in the first century. Bizarre, huh? Anyway, you can click the link to check out the post if you want.

Book Towns: Part I

Fascinating

Cafe Book Bean

ruedeesperance
A Book Town is a trend that began in the 1960’s and refers to a town or village with a large number of used book or antiquarian book stores.
Along with their unique and plentiful bookstores they also host wonderful literary festivals

These book festivals attract book lovers and bibliophiles from all over the world. A number of towns are also members of the International Organisation of Book Towns.

Check out these first 6 awesome, yet quaint little book towns:

240-Montolieu-village-du-livre-Aude_focus_eventsMontolieu, France
Sometimes referred to as the “Village of Books.” Montolieu was the town that first introduced me to the concept of “Book Towns.” With a population of roughly only 747 people Montolieu contains fifteen bookshops, mostly specializing in second-hand and
16540322265_089531e1a8_zantiquarian books.
Every year the town offers many workshops such as: Used and antiquarian bookshops, Working craftspeople of books and art, The Arts and Crafts of the Book Museum, Bibliophilia…

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The Arabic Letter “Nun”

The Modern Monastic Order Of Saint Simon of Cyrene

When the ISIS were about to complete their genocide of the Christians of Mosul in the past few days, they put this mark on the walls of the homes of the Christians — to mark them out for plunder and death. This is the letter “Nun” (ن), the 14th letter of the Arabic alphabet (the equivalent of letter N in our Roman alphabet), the first letter of the word Nasara (نصارى : Nazarenes).

nun-arabic-letter

Perhaps I shouldn’t be suggesting this as I have only recently converted to Orthodox Christianity.  Then again, I have not let my lack of years in the faith (or lack of being a part of the Church) be a barrier to sharing my opinion.  But, with the recent events in Iraq, Palestine, and the Ukraine added to other persecutions and evidence of ignorance of our faith; I think “nun” should be adopted as a symbol of the…

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