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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

What's a Pixar Pitch?

I've been reading Daniel Pink's book, To Sell Is Human, and I'm trying to write some Pixar Pitches. Here's an attempt to pitch the Five-Minute Bible Story Series:

Once upon a time everyone kept their Bibles safe and tidy on the shelf. Every day they walked past their bookshelves, secure in the knowledge that sacredness was safe, while only allowing fathers, elders and pastors to read the holy words. One day educated children started asking awkward questions about faith and science. Because of that, people began keeping their science books safely locked up too. Because of that, some fathers, elders and pastors began calling science anti-faith, questions anti-hope, and imagination anti-everything. Until finally the children opened the Bibles and science books for themselves, asked lots of questions, imagined the lives of historical characters, and realized God was big enough to answer whatever they threw at him.

For parents and children who may not yet have realized this, I offer Five-Minute stories based on the Bible, science and history, fully faithful to each inasmuch as I'm able to make them. Enjoy!

Friday, September 29, 2017

Stained glass windows at Exposition

What light through yonder window shines?
What shimmered ray beyond the gloom,
With splintered rainbows diamond-mined?
Then if the day seems gone too soon
What truth beyond the window-pane?
Sunshine will follow rain.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Monstrance at Exposition

Sunrays llike a crown of thorns
Sharp as nails to hold you down
But lift the cloth and all around
Shall see your glory now.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Gifts at Exposition

We 'cased him in gold with
Silver threads woven
We forgot we'd been told
He was 'trusting his world to
Our care.
We laid bare the ground and
Destroyed all the gifts he
Had made
Except for the gold where
He hangs so he weeps for
Us there.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Mother and child at Exposition

Did your child eyes in innocense
See how your life would end?
Did your child heart begin to sense
The pain your path would send?
Then did your mother dry your tears
And did she calm your fears?
For you were child and infant first
Before you died for me.

When your child fingers worked with wood
Did you percieve the cross?
When your child lips ate mother's food
Did you taste death and loss
Or did you taste the bread of life?
Did mother soothe your strife?
For you were child and infant first
Before you died for me.

With arms held wide a child might fly;
Did you see how you'd die?
With crown of love a child's delight
Did thorns then blur your sight?
With mother's arms to comfort then
Till time and seasons right
My lord was child and infant and
For me he lived and died.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Colors at Exposition

They painted the walls of the ancient church
Not new colors though; these were old.
When they faded to gray
They declared it the way
God intended. No newness. No bold
Shades,  no light through those dark colored panes.
They told us the lie
That God doesn't like bright -
He who made all the colors and shades
Of the day and the night -
God said let there be light!

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Gifts at Exposition

The shepherd brought a lamb
The king brought gold
Mother brought her love
Father his skills with wood
What should I bring?

I offer you my soul
A helpless lamb
I offer you the worthless gold
Of all my dreams and goals
I bring my all
You give to me

Your all
My God
My king.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Kneeling at Exposition

That you should give yourself to us
In form of bread;
That you should share your life with us
Whose feet are lead;
That silver and gold be given to souls
Of iron and clay;
That we might all be changed to gold
Along your way;
That this great truth be known and told
Today  always;
To this let all on bended knee
Declare amen.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Pretending to be Good?

Is my witness how I pretend to be good when life gets me down,
or how I accept my failure when life lets me stand again?

Maybe pretending to be good is failure too.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


If getting it wrong an essential step on the road to getting it right,
maybe failure shouldn't be so depressing after all.

The Bible's full of failures... loved, forgiven and redeemed.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Show and Tell

They tell us we should "show, don't tell," but telling's easier.
Did you know, it's easier to tell than to be, as well.
Be the message... who me?

Friday, March 24, 2017

Does death put things in perspective?

They say death puts things in perspective. It certainly leaves the living thinking their small troubles hardly compare to those of the bereaved. Then we add guilt to trouble and hide our tears because they wouldn't be fair. But perhaps God has spared us this trial because he wants us to learn -- from how another deals with trials, or perhaps from the trials he's already given us.

The death of a friend is huge. It must loom so impossibly for his family. I mourn with them. And I still cry at night for my own small troubles too. Does that make me small or just human?

Perhaps I should wake up and pray when I cry in the night.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

If someone can be taken too soon, does that imply there's a right time?

If someone can be "taken too soon," does that imply there's a right time? My dad certainly thought so. He told my mum not to be scared of him having another heart attack. If he did and she didn't know what to do, she should trust  God was well aware of that fact and had chosen the timing perfectly. He said he would go when God wanted him to -- neither too soon nor too late. Will I trust like my dad?

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Am I a Christian author?

The best-selling Christian author knows God called her to write. He confirmed the call when her books became best-sellers.

The up-and-coming Christian author trusts God called her to write. He confirms the call with each increasing success.

The faith-filled Christian author believes God called her to write. She knows that if she acts on that gift of faith she'll receive even more than she's dreamed.

And me? I think God called me to write, because He made me this way. He gives me words that I love to put on the page. But does He give me dreams, or are they mistakes?

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

If I write words that nobody reads...

I used to read my Bible and listen to God while feeding the baby. I asked, "Why do you give me so much when I haven't got the time to pass anything on?" "Perhaps My words are a gift just for you."

The kids grew older. I read my Bible and wrote down the words I received. "Why do you give me so many words when nobody's going to read them?" "Perhaps they're a gift for one reader, and that's enough."

Then the kids grew up. I found a publisher. "Why do you give me  books when they won't sell?" And God won't tell. But perhaps that just means I should have listened closer to Him before.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

My attitudes

We were needy when our basement flooded; wet, on our knees, packing boxes of washed-out memories into the trash.

We were loved when friends from church and community gathered to help us out.

But now I hurt. Is it wrong to mourn lost memories... lost stuff... the stuff of my dreams... when I know so many others have lost so much more?

Monday, February 13, 2017


Our pastor's take on the Beatitudes: Grace for the needy; kneel down and receive. Love for our service; stand up to give mercy and peace. Then hope for the hurting, for falling, then back to our knees. He calls it Christian aerobics.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Washed away words

Did God flood my basement to stop me wasting time writing? Did Satan flood it to stop me writing the things God called me to write? Or are flooded basements just life in a broken world?

Friday, February 10, 2017

My Purpose. My Power.

My purpose... is to make my readers see through different eyes, to invite them into real and wounded lives, to show the power of forgiveness and the miracle of hope, to invite questions, draw back the curtain, reveal some tiny glimpse of what lies behind. In Bible stories I'll show a real world of real people--real history, real science--and a very real God. In contemporary drama my real people will cry for real release. In animal stories I'm still asking readers to see... In science fiction, in fantasy...

My purpose is to write words that people will read. But where will I find the power to place those words where readers will see them?

And is my purpose aligned with God's?

And is my power for many or for one?

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Not Sure I Understand My Star Gift This Year

I was given solitude and I wrote alone. I was given quietness and I ignored the noise. I was given awareness when I needed to lead a group and see people's needs. The gift of tolerance made me aware that my tolerance wasn't a crime. And now I have power. Do I?

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Of gifts and talents and dreams

Star gifts aren't drips of glory from on high. They're not even treasures for us to unwrap, but rather validations of gifts God has given and is using in our lives. We're meant to dip a hand in the dish and remove one star, with prayer, then read and ponder, see and wonder. It's true that all my star gifts have meant something special to me in the past. But this year I got such a wondrous gift, one to long for, to dream of, to desire--a gift of power. All I feel is its lack. But perhaps star gifts aren't meant to be feelings either.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Power, purpose and satisfaction

My star gift was power. But what good's power without purpose? Last year I wondered what good my great high purpose might be without power. I guess I'm never satisfied.

Monday, February 6, 2017

What gift is your star?

My star gift from church, delayed because snow got in the way, was a gray card labelled power. My nerves now frayed from bailing water in the basement, I feel powerless. Meanwhile Mum, harried and harassed by my plight, received the gift of peace. We're both hoping and praying the rain and snow might cease.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

New Year Resolutions

  1. Write dribs 'n drabs while waiting for  spinning wheels on the computer screen.
  2. Read  books instead of reading dribs 'n drabs of advertisements.
  3. Write books instead of book reviews (I will catch up but the review list is longer than the year).
  4. Enter contests to get published instead of contests to win free reads.
  5. Clean up my inbox, even if it does mean unsubscribing from interesting emails.
  6. Clean up my outbox by replying to emails faster, which means
  7. Read more emails on the computer instead of on the phone.
That'll do for a start. Besides, 7's a very good number, and I never make new year resolutions anyway.