Turning From One Season to the Next

I recently heard the song Turn! Turn! Turn! by the Byrds. It is from the book of Ecclesiastes chapter 3 where King Solomon wrote:

1 For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. 

2 A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. 

3 A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up. 

4 A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance. 

5 A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away. 

6 A time to search and a time to quit searching. A time to keep and a time to throw away. 

7 A time to tear and a time to mend. A time to be quiet and a time to speak. 

8 A time to love and a time to hate. A time for war and a time for peace. 

Indeed, I am not as wise as Solomon, so I take his advice to help me through my life’s trying and challenging times. His words remind us that everything changes – just like the seasons.

I finished writing In Paul’s Wake, the Seer of Philippi during the past year. The book explores the lead character’s seasons – from her life as a child, to her life as a seer, and then her true life.

I have seen many seasons of change, but if I had focused only on the tough times, I never could have written the book (or function in life). Equally, I can’t focus only on the best times. There must be balance in life. A way to move through the bad and good incidents that make up every person’s life.

As King Solomon states in verse 11, Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.

I trust that He has everything in His hands, and all things will work out.

So this is Christmas

Christmas time again.

As you read that statement, what emotion popped into your mind? Did you think about Christmas with joy, dread, exhaustion, anxiety, sadness, or reverence?

For me, I go through all those emotions. Having the family together, the food, and the season’s excitement all come together to cause many feelings.

  • Joy. I love my family and having them together makes me happy.
  • Dread. The holiday shopping. I am not a shopper.
  • Exhaustion. Trying to get everything ready, shipped, and cooked wears me out.
  • Anxiety. Trying to get everything done, but reality is I put this stress on me.
  • Sadness. There are empty seats at the Christmas table. Some are empty because of schedules or illness, and others are empty because the person has died.
  • Reverence. When I stop to contemplate the reason we are celebrating the season. I am in awe that God came to live on Earth as a man. Don’t be afraid to talk to Him about how you are feeling, because He truly understands and cares for you.

Wishing you the merriest of Christmases.

Christian Fiction Not as Easy as General Fiction

Finally, my first Christian fiction book is available. It took me a month to write the story, a year to get it published, but it took a lifetime to prepare me to write this type of story.

I was studying the book of Acts, the 16th chapter. Here we find the apostle Paul visiting Philippi. While there, he encountered a young slave girl that worked as a fortuneteller. She followed him around the city taunting him. He became frustrated by her actions. He then commanded the demon that lived inside of her to come out. Now she could no longer tell fortunes and her masters were upset and brought charges against Paul.

As I read the story it hit me, “what happened to the slave girl?” It is impossible to have an encounter with God and not be changed. The Bible and church history are silent about what happened to the girl.

The story In Paul’s Wake The Seer of Philippi is a fictitious answer to that question. While I have added characters, dialogue, and events to make the story more entertaining, I have tried to stay true to the Biblical facts of the event.

This was a fun story to write if not a little intimidating.