I began this newsletter on a glorious warm day in January and felt the need to reconnect with all of you, not because I had something important to say but simply because I’ve missed you. Today it is 10 ° F. Based on the paucity of my newsletters, it is clear that Inspiration departed and writers block took its place when we moved from our home on Lake Superior. During the nineteen years we lived within that magical landscape, it was easy to write. I’m saddened I’ve done such a poor job finding inspiration here.
Our new home is delightful. A residence for active seniors filled with warm and bright people who have become a family. It is a very busy, lively place. This busy-ness and immediate access to the many amenities offered by Metropolitan living, has given me an abundance of excuses not to write. When I was asked to help form a writers’ group here at RosePointe, I found a way out of my creative lethargy. I can’t sit by and let everyone write but me.
I have several thick red journals packed with years of quotations and notes on lectures and retreats that inspire me. While poking through current gleanings this morning—hoping to be jolted into creativity—I came across this notation from a retreat given by James Finley (one of Thomas Merton’s disciples and a well-known spiritual lecturer).
The task of spirituality is to allow God to love you. To discern God’s will does not mean to take a particular course of action. Whatever you choose is right even when you’re wrong. God is not waiting for you somewhere else because you’ve gone in the wrong direction. God is present to you now wherever you might be. I find this immensely comforting. Wherever I am, God is with me now. Now I can get up and write this newsletter.
Writing updates: My writing life is looking up now that we have a writers’ group. We had a meeting today in which I led a ten-minute writing exercise based on one of my favorite exercises: filling a page with words (action verbs, colors, sounds, objects and places), selecting five spontaneously, and quickly using them into one sentence. What fun.
Meanwhile, the work on the new edition ofis nearing completion. It’s got a gorgeous new cover, intro and afterword. I’m getting back into the swing of the craft and believe that Its sequel might just complete its long gestation in the near future.
I hope the holidays brought you many blessings and that your happy days outnumbered the painful days. I pray this new year will be one in which we might work together to restore compassion to our nation and the world.