Saturday, July 17, 2010

Sunday Sharing: Turning the Clock Back

: How has our country changed in the past 65 years for Christians? And just how much has that changed our personal walks . . . with the Lord; with our families, with our churches, and with those who don't yet know Him?

Whether you're a Christian writer or not, Bear thinks you'll find the following very interesting, as she turns the clock back to the world of 1945, just 65 years ago. Oh, how times have changed . . .

NOTE: Bear is doing something a bit different today. Instead of sharing a favorite video or recorded testimony for Sunday Sharing as usual, she'll share using straight writing. Bear's new computer, running the Linux operating system, is having some trouble handling Internet videos -- it has trouble playing them at all, in fact -- something to do with codecs that Windows has, but which have to be specially loaded with Linux operating systems. If that turns out to be an ongoing problem, Bear might drop the media aspect of Sunday Sharing altogether. But for now, we'll wait and see on the longterm, and take things one week at a time.

Although today's sharing has roots in Bear's interest in learning to write for youth, it actually concerns changes in Christianity in America, in general. But first, to fill in a bit of needed background info . . .

Bear has sold a couple of short stories to small Christian youth magazines in the past, so already has a general feeling for the market, for publishers' guidelines, and for what various Christian publishers are currently seeking in Christian Youth Fiction.

More and more nowadays, Christian publishers tend to be looking for a very soft approach to the Gospel. They want books and short stories that stress strong Christian values; but most publishers apparently don't feel that modern-day youth are going to have much tolerance for teens that go around being "preachy" or "like pollyanna". (And many publishers even state this flat-out in their guidelines for writers).

Often, when you submit a short story to a Christian publisher, if you even use the Name of Jesus in the story, for example, it's changed by editors to the more generic "God", so the story has a wider appeal and bigger market.

Christian youth magazines and book publishers who don't have these types of cautions in their guidelines are few, although some do exist, here and there.

In light of these restrictions becoming ever stronger nowadays, Bear has been researching what Christian youth writing was like in the old days, in order to get some perspective on the issue; and has been praying on how the Lord wants her personally to walk this situation.

Should she compromise and tone things way down for the modern market?

Or is there a way to somehow bridge the gap between the older type of bolder witness (which you'll see as you read the sample below), and today's modern, more hardened, generation of Christian youth?

Bear has read many of those youth books from older days. But for a representative example of what she's talking about, she'll use quotes from just one popular book for teens from 1945 . . .

Ken Saddles Up by Basil Miller -- Zondervan Publishing House, 1945 NOTE: Direct quotes from the book below are indented, block quote style.

Dedicated to: The thousands of wholesome, red-blooded American boys who follow Ken's adventures, and daily pray, "Help me, God, to be as true to Thee as Ken is."

On its back cover, nine other books in the "Ken" series are listed, with titles like: Ken Rides the Range; Ken in Alaska; and, Ken South of the Border. Below the list is written: "Over 190,000 copies of this series in print" (which in those days means it was a fairly popular selling youth series.)

The book opens with 14-year-old Ken and his unsaved (but wholesomely cute) friend Kay riding the desert range together, just outside the Grand Canyon, searching for the rustlers who have stolen cattle from Kay's family ranch. Kay's father has been paralyzed since last spring, and the stolen cattle are desparately needed to pay pressing doctor bills and an overdue mortgage on the ranch. Bank foreclosure is imminent.

On page 14, worried about the troubles they might be headed into, the two decide to pray. (Notice that prayer was so common in those days that even Kay, though still unsaved and not a girl of church, wants to pray) . . .

"Let's stop right here and pray, Ken. I'd feel much better if we did."

"O.K. Let's ground hitch our ponies and pray," said Ken dropping Cal's reins to the ground, thus "ground hitching" his mount. He leaped from the saddle and helped Kay to dismount . . .

Kneeling on the sand, Ken prayed earnestly: "Dear Lord, we are in Thy hands, and Thou knowest what trouble Kay is in. We don't know how much danger we will face before this is over, but we are trusting in Thee to see us through. Touch Kay's heart and make her a born-again Christian. She needs Thee, and her father and Dirk need Thee in this hour of trouble. Save them all. Help us to find out who's stealing the cattle. For Jesus' sake. Amen."

Rising from their knees, Kay and Ken stood for a moment, listening silently to the near-by rumble of cattle . . ."

Notice that in those days, even when outside in public, it was natural and expected for people to pray on their knees rather than standing up.

By page 17, Kay and Ken have become separated while running away from the rustlers and Ken is wondering what to do next . . .

. . . Something must have happened to Kay. He felt that it would be useless for him to ride back and search for her. This would only bring him into the line of the guard's fire.

A verse from the Psalms warmed his heart with its message of comfort: Because thou hast made the Lord ... Even the most High, thy habitation; there shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

Notice that a Christian teen in those days was expected to know Scripture well, and to have key verses of Scripture memorized and/or a pocket New Testament with him. (And this has been confirmed to Bear by reading other Christian youth books from this period.) This was normal, not exceptional.

Page 18

As he prayed for help, a voice out of the skies seemed to say: Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him.

Page 20 - Kay and Ken are back together again and on the run . . .

The burst of a machine gun filled the desert night; its withering fire began to kick up the stones beyond the fleeing riders.

"God must help us, Kay!" Ken shouted as they raced across the uneven desert.

"Pray, Ken; pray as you've never prayed in your life. Our lives depend upon it."

Again notice that this is Kay reminding Ken to pray, while she is yet still unsaved. That's how common dependency on prayer was in America, back in those days. Moral people considered it normal to pray, even if they weren't regular church go-ers. In fact, in Bear's family, even back in the early 60's, though she never saw her mother set foot in a Christian church, and her mother made sure she understood that it was very wrong to consider Jesus anything more than a "good teacher", Bear was taught to pray every night before bed, "Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take . . . "

(For another example of this, Bear recommends watching some of the older, original black and white Godzilla movies. For example, in one of them, when Godzilla was coming towards a town, that town's response was to go to mass prayer, even though it wasn't a "Christian" movie, per se.)

Page 21 - Ken and Kay fleeing on horseback from the band of rustlers . . .

In the distance he could hear a line of cow ponies pounding the Painted Desert in pursuit. He thought of a New Testament verse which he had read many times: Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.

"Kay, I believe that God will protect us," Ken said. In his heart he felt the rustlers' bullets would not find their target.

Page 27 - Later, while the two are hiding in the darkness in a valley (the time when even most Christian youth fiction books nowadays toss in the expected romance), Ken leads Kay not to romance, but to the Lord . . .

Then Ken said, seriously, "Kay, before we go, let's ask God to direct us on this dangerous ride. Remember-- tomorrow the big roundup begins. Before two weeks there'll be two hundred thousand beeves on their way to the markets. Believe me, I don't want to miss that fun!"

"I would like that," Kay answered. "I wish you could see to read some verses from your Bible." She knew that Ken always carried a New Testament in his pocket.

"It is too dark for that," the boy replied, "but I can quote some from memory."

"Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted?" he began. "Ye are the light of the world."

"What does that mean, Ken?" Kay interrupted.

"Christians are the light which God has set in the world to show men the way to Christ. If sinners are to be led to Christ they will have to see the light of Jesus shining through Christians."

"Ken, I wish you would teach me how to be a Christian. I want to be Christ's light. Will you show me how?"

For an hour, despite the nearness of dawn and the thirty miles between them and the Bar-H, Ken talked with his friend about Christ's invitation to all men to come unto Him. "The way of salvation is plain, Kay" he said. "The Bible says, Whosoever shall call upon the Lord shall be saved."

"To be saved, then, means that I will belong to Jesus?" asked Kay.

"Yes, you are a sinner, and when you ask to be forgiven, you are born again and Jesus saves you. Let's pray now. Remember -- you must confess your sins and forsake your sins and believe that Jesus saves you right now."

Page 29 - By early morning light, not only are the two still innocent (and unsullied by major sexual temptations at 14 years old), but Kay is now a born-again Christian . . .

"How do you like it?" asked Kay, as they stood together looking at the scene before them. "Isn't it beautiful in the early morning light?"

"Yes it is, Kay." He turned toward her and put his hand on her shoulder. What a wholesome, likeable girl she was! "Let's always be friends," Ken said.

"Yes, Ken," Kay answered. "But listen, cowboy, right now we have a thirty-mile ride ahead of us." With a gay laugh she threw herself into the saddle and raced away at breakneck speed.

One more example of how Christians were expected to pray in those days and how easily they depended on prayer appears on page 47. Ken and Kay have arrived back at the ranch only to find things have gotten worse. Now Ken's little sister was missing, kidnapped, and being held for ransom by the rustlers . . .

"Ken, you talk to God for us," said the old rancher, as he dropped to his knees. "We are doing everything that is humanly possible to find Sandra, but we need God's help or our efforts will fail."

Ken knelt beside his uncle. The others followed his example.

"Dear Heavenly Father," he prayed, "we are gathered at the Bar-H. We love our little sister and want her to come back to us. Don't let any harm or danger come to her. Protect her from those evil men and bring her back to the ranch safe and sound. Thy promise is that if we ask anything according to Thy will it shall be done, and if we ask in faith, believing, it shall come to pass."

"We are asking now for Sandra's return and we believe that Thou wilt help us right now. Help us find the rustlers and break up this terrible black market. For Jesus' sake. Amen."

Note that it was credible for a teen to pray and preach the Lord with a solid understanding of the basic principles of salvation and also to be able to apply Scriptural verses concerning prayer while appealing to God. This wasn't eliminated from books as too "preachy" or "pollyanna" or with the thought that the teen was too knowlegable of Scriptural truths to be believable.

At the end of the book things come to expected resolution . . . The rustlers are captured, the cattle are returned, and the ranch is saved. Ken is rewarded for his part in the matter by an Army pilot being sent out to teach him how to fly a plane (a one-time treat for someone at the age of 14 -- an unusual privilege as reward), which has always been a dream for him.

Page 68, the final page of our story - Ken and Kay are out on the airfield together at sunset, the book's last opportunity for expected romance . . .

His mind was full of wonderful visions for the future -- visions of the good that, with God's help, he might do. His heart was overflowing; surely these words of the Psalmist were his experience, too: The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.

Kay and Ken walked down the airfield runway where Ken's glider gleamed in the sun. The lad stroked a long, silvery wing, and said, "Some day, Kay, you and I will fly together."

Kay smiled and said, "I don't know whether I'd feel safe . . ."

"Kay, wherever duty calls, God is there, and we are always safe, for the Bible says, Underneath are the everlasting arms."

And so ends the book.

Again, take note that the other nine books in this series (selling at $1.00 each which is probably equivalent to about $15 apiece nowadays), had sold over 190,000 copies. And the population of the United States and output of the book publishing industry in general were both much smaller in those days. Also note that, in 1945, the date of this book's publication, World War II had been raging for many years and the economy was totally geared towards the war effort, with food and gas rationing likely still in force, even.

In other words, an amazing number of kids were happily reading about Ken and Kay, their heroes.

Another series advertised on the back cover of this same book is the "Patty Lou" series, which is obviously the clone series for girls, with titles like Patty Lou of the Golden West; Patty Lou -- the Flying Nurse; and Patty Lou Home on the Range.

These were all top Christian youth books of the day, and highly popular.

It certainly gives one pause for thought . . .

And pause for prayer . . .

Even, perhaps, pause for prayer on one's knees . . .

Drop by Spiritual Sundays as well, to find links to the whole selection of this week's entries by Christian writers, and/or to add a link of your own and join in the fun! We all welcome comments and discussion! (NOTE: A small percentage of Spiritual Sundays' entries may sometimes be by writers of other religions or of the New Age -- Discernment is advised.)
Bear's news and free multi-media Christian resources: Bear's Writing Den

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday Fiction: Zappy and I -- Part 3

: FINALLY! Bear's back for Friday Fiction, after more than a month of computer problems. And she's thanking the Lord much that things are up and running again -- all systems go!

Under the circumstances, it seems very appropriate to be featuring more adventures with that first Internet Computer of so many years ago... good 'ol Zapclunk.

So, onwards to our concluding episode of Zappy and I.

This final episode picks up just after Clicky, the keyboard, has succeeded in conning our heroine into trying yet another useless procedure to fix the computer's scanner and get it up and running... (Dealing with a rebellious, talking computer that has come to life, while trying to keep focus on a basic Christian walk in the midst, is turning out to be harder than one might expect...)

(NOTE: For those who missed the first episodes, Part 1 is available HERE, and Part 2 is available HERE).

Zappy and I -- Part 3

That night, I was back at my all-too-familiar post in the hall...

The keys clattered, giggling, "Man, did she fall, or what? Thinking I was helping her. Department store's Electronics Section!" It trailed off into helpless laughter.

"Yeah," whirred the disk. "Good job, Clicky! Like we don't know she listens at the door every night. Give me a break!"

I groaned quietly. They were on to me.

The monitor's voice trembled a bit, the glow of its screen dim. "Did you see her attack me? In cold blood, too. An inch to the left, and she would have gotten me right in the eye!"

"It serves you right, Greenie!" The disk whirred louder. "Now you got a taste of what it's like, huh? You won't be so quick to laugh next time she tries a reformatting, I'll bet."

"But I was doing my job! If she wanted to kill someone, why not go for Scan-boy, or Mr. Inky, over there? That's what I wanna know!"

Then a tiny voice I hadn't heard before piped up, high and squeaky. I had to turn my head and hold my breath to hear...

"Well, why don't you just tell her to turn on the other USB port in the BIOS menu? Then she wouldn't be so upset. Greenie's right. If you guys would just do your jobs--"

"Shh!" hissed one of the speakers, static crackling angrily. "Don't you know she's probably listening?"

"Whatever." The little voice got louder. "The BIOS. Check the BIOS! You have to turn on the other USB port. It's still turned--"

There was a sudden THUNK, and one last squeak. Then silence.

I charged into the living room and flipped the light switch. There on the floor was the mouse, flipped over on its back, still rocking like an overturned turtle in its shell.

I tenderly picked it up, glaring at Zapclunk's blinking red light. "You didn't have to hurt the poor little guy. BIOS, huh? We'll just see about that."

I gave the metal case a slight kick, even though I was sure they advised against that sort of thing in all the books, and stomped out of the room.

By the next morning though, I had grown suspicious of Squeaky mouse. I couldn't believe the manufacturer would actually sell me a new computer with parts of it turned off. What was the point of having two USB ports if they weren't even turned on? Who'd ever heard of having to tell a computer to turn on one of its ports before? This was probably just another setup. Squeaky had been acting and was in cohoots with all the others. I wasn't going to fall for that twice -- the old "sympathetic component" routine.

But as I went about preparing my breakfast, trying not to think about it, the word "BIOS" kept repeating in my mind... "BIOS", "BIOS", "BIOS"...

The stove's burner splattered and spit as oatmeal boiled over. I made a fast grab for the lid, pulling it off the pot, shaking my head. No, I wouldn't...

"BIOS", "BIOS", "BIOS"...came the mechanical whisper.

I leaned around the corner of the kitchen door and stared hard at Zapclunk.

But the red light was dark, and I remembered I'd unplugged him last night, after putting Squeaky back on his pad.

This was where it ended then. I was losing it. It had to happen, sooner or later, I suppose.

Grimly, I jerked the oatmeal pot off the stove, tossing a wet washrag over the spill... "BIOS"...

Turning off the burner, I stomped into the spare room and began rummaging through the drawer, looking for the manufacturer's manual. Ten minutes later I was scanning its pages, searching for all mention of the word "BIOS".

I don't know how I ended up on the floor... but minutes later I came to my senses, sitting there on the carpet, the manual still open in my lap. I read the page again (likely for the sixth time, at least).

It was true. It told me that the USB port might actually need to be turned on in the BIOS menu, instructing me how to do so.

The tiny little twerp was right.

Oatmeal forgotten, I followed the instructions step by step. It only took a few minutes. Then I held my breath as I hooked the scanner into the port, carefully checking its icon.

Yes... so far, so good. The icon was where it should be.

I sent up a quick prayer, once again centering a photo on Scan-boy's glass, and clicked the button, signaling Zapclunk to load the picture.

I couldn't believe it.

The scanner light was actually coming on.

Yes... The light was moving across the photo now. I stared at Greenie's screen in wonder as the picture of my dog and me slowly began appearing there, bit by bit.

Then with a yell I leaped up, throwing my hands high in victory. "It WORKS! IT WORKS! You were soooo right, Squeaky Mouse! It actually works!"

I know it was stupid...uncool... even downright lame.

I know I shouldn't have done it.

But it just occurred to me, as I was dancing around the room in joy, that "Squeaky" was not a very good name for a mouse that had saved the day. "Saved the day... Saved the day..." I thought.

"I should call you 'Mighty,' not 'Squeaky Mouse'." And the old cartoon intro popped into mind as I joyously burst into song about a flying mouse.

I think that's what did it.

Because it was then, just as the last sliver my dog's tail was appearing on the screen, fully loaded, and I was right in the middle of the second verse...

It was then Scan-boy froze, the picture disappeared, and Zapclunk crashed again.

Later, the landlord asked me quite a few questions about the whole thing... Wanted to know why he heard me yelling about mice clear over at his house (which is halfway down the block). Was worried that they had overrun the house... offered to pick me up some traps at the store.

Thankfully, by then, I had become quite calm again. I told him not to worry about a thing -- that I would take care of the mouse, all right. Told him trapping was too good for it.

He didn't know what I was talking about, of course. And I didn't fill him in.

As I said, he wouldn't understand.

That's when I reassessed strategy. Obviously, hiding in the hallway again wouldn't work. They knew I was listening. It had just been another setup, after all.

Stupid mouse!

So late that afternoon, I made a big show of starting up the Anti-Virus program, setting it to do a full system scan. Then, while Zapclunk was distracted, scanning for bugs, I looked at my watch in shock.

"Oh my! I forgot those overdue library books. And the library will be closing any minute. Silly me!" Grabbing a couple of random books off the shelf (I ended up with an old college algebra textbook and my classical music piano book), I tore out of the house.

I even leaped into the car and backed it out of the driveway, for added effect.

But when I got to the end of the block, I pulled over under the shade of a neighbor's maple tree, and quickly made my way back. Sneaking through the yard, I was careful not to step on any of the pine cones that lay hidden in the grass, not wanting their crackling to give me away. Finally, I reached the wall nearest the computer and flattened my back against it underneath the open window, hoping my elderly neighbor wouldn't call the police on me. (Her vision wasn't all it should be).

Sure enough, they were having a party in there. The printer was laughing so hard, in fact, it could hardly get the words out. "Mighty... Mighty... Oh, that's so good..."

There was a hurt sounding squeak, and then the voice so tiny. "Well, it should have worked. She must need a power USB hub. Mr. Disk's processor is so small -- I bet the USB ports are weak too -- bet they don't even have the power to run Mr. heavy-drain Scan-boy, over there."

Zapclunk's main fan grated, "Maybe Scan-boy does pull a lot of power, but you'll never have a chance to tell the tale. One squeak from you -- even one -- and--"

"Yeah," cut in Greenie, glowing so brightly the curtains actually turned slightly green, "Remember what happened last time. And we were going easy on you, shrimp. You landed on a nice soft rug that time..."

Sneaking away from the house, still feeling somewhat criminal, I headed over to the landlord's place to ask him what a powered USB hub was.

He explained, matter-of-factly, that sometimes the USB ports don't get enough power from the main computer to run some components, like scanners, that use a lot of power. So, in that case, you could buy a "hub" that has many USB ports on it. One end of the hub plugs into your USB port, and the other end plugs into the wall, pulling power directly from the wall to run the whole thing. Then you can plug scanners and other heavy duty USB equipment into the hub instead of the computer, and get power directly from the wall for them.

Suspiciously, I wanted to know why it didn't mention this in the manuals. And why hadn't he ever mentioned this to me before? (Not that I thought he and Zapclunk were conspiring together or anything, but still...)

He shrugged, saying lots of computers didn't need the power hub, and he hadn't known I was trying to run a scanner. So he hadn't thought of it.

To me, he seemed pretty casual about the whole business, considering I'd been driven to near nervous breakdown. But then, I'd never told him about that...

Anyway, I had a brand new USB hub plugged in and ready to test within a day.

There was no dancing this time.

I was calm and cool, my movements methodical, as I hooked the hub into the computer and plugged it in.

I watched quietly as the scanner copied the same photo of my dog and me, this time displaying it fully upon the screen.

The computer worked silently and efficiently, doing its job.

It felt eerie.

Zappy never spoke again.

Oh yeah... I call him "Zappy" now.

God changed Jacob's name to "Israel" after their struggle. I figured Zappy deserved as much. After all, we work together now, Zappy and I. True partners in spreading the Gospel for the Lord's Kingdom and glory.

Sometimes though, as I wake up late at night, I find myself listening, thinking I hear something. But it always turns out to be just a branch scraping against the window in the wind, or the sound of a distant car engine.

One night, rolling over in the darkness just before dropping back off to sleep, I wondered, rather sadly, what Zappy would say now if...

A scripture popped into mind from Ecclesiastes (3:1,7), "To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven...a time to keep silence, and a time to speak."

I smiled as I fell asleep, finally at peace.

The End.


Bear would like to put in a few words here, just to set people's mind at ease. For the record, she has never actually attacked any of her computers with a pocket knife, or even kicked them, although she does feel that computers sometimes probably deserve such treatment, and admits to having had a few fantasies...

Zappy, although he turned out to be a great writing partner for years, was eventually retired some years ago, due to having such a slow processor speed that he was no longer able to handle Internet work. However, Bear is planning on pulling out his 20 GB hard drive for future use, before sending him on to a computer rest-home. So part of Zappy will live on...

But then, after this past month of dealing with more recent computer challenges, Bear suspects there's a bit of mischievous Zappy living in all computers anyway.

In fact, Bear thinks Zappy has many brothers and sisters...

And cousins and aunts and uncles...

And second cousins and third cousins and...

So don't be surprised if, when sound asleep and you least expect it...

You yourself wake up thinking you hear the sound of mechanical chuckles in the night.

Joanne over at An Open Book is hosting Fiction Friday this week. So be sure and drop over there as well, to find links to the whole selection of entries by Christian writers, and/or to add a link of your own and join in the fun! We all welcome comments and discussion!
Bear's news and free multi-media Christian resources: Bear's Writing Den

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

WFW: Grasshopper's Journey

"Now the Lord had said unto Abram,
Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred,
and from thy father's house,
unto a land that I will show thee:"
Genesis 12:1 (KJV)

Bear was in her Bearmobile, zipping down the highway at 60 mph when she first noticed the miniature hitchhiker desparately clinging to her windshield wiper. She watched as he adjusted his position slightly to get a better grip with his suction feet. The tiny feelers on his head were waving wildly in the wind.

Bear laughed. This little hopper was on more of a journey than he'd ever bargained for, back when he'd innocently climbed aboard at the Den's driveway.

She decided she couldn't pass up such a picture, and carefully reached into a pack for her cell phone camera, while keeping an eye on highway. By propping the camera up against the glass, and adjusting it little by little, (holding it at arm's length and trying to center the viewfinder by guesstimate) she was able to catch a few shots.

It seemed to her that the grasshopper was even hamming it up a bit, leaning against the glass sometimes, seeming to pose for the camera. But he might have just been yelling to Bear to stop taking pictures, and pull the car over somewhere so he could get off this crazy machine.

Forty miles later, Bear gave him his chance. In fact, she felt so sorry for the poor little guy that she pulled to the curb as soon as she got off the highway.

The grasshopper seemed to catch his breath a bit, looking around cautiously, still clinging tightly to the windshield wiper.

He couldn't seem to believe it was over.

Then, apparently deciding it was truly safe, he made what must have been at least a 15 foot leap, to solid concrete. A second long leap and he was out of sight, heading for a distant patch of grass.

As she pulled away from the curb, Bear wondered what his life would be like in his new town. She wondered what he felt like, being so unexpectedly transplanted from the cool grassy shade around the Den, to a new, strange town, so far away... in a grasshopper's eyes -- a world away.

She shook her head, still amazed the grasshopper had been able to hold on at highway speeds for so long. The little guy was certainly a trooper.

Sometimes it seemed to Bear that she too seemed to find herself unexpectedly hurtling along to an unknown destination in life, (being whisked up in the Lord's Providential Plan), feeling as vulnerable as a grasshopper precariously clinging to a windshield wiper at highway speeds in the hot July afternoon.

She decided she could learn much from her tiny hitchhiking friend about how to hang on at times like those... Until that final great leap for joy that comes at the end of every such journey... when faith finally becomes sight.

Internet Cafe Devotions is hosting Word Filled Wednesday, and this week's links are HERE . So be sure and drop over there as well, to find links to the whole selection of entries by Christian writers, and/or to add a link of your own and join in the fun! We all welcome comments and discussion!


Bear's news and free multi-media Christian resources: Bear's Writing Den