My Writing history.

Back in 2012, I finished and self-published my first novel: “Montesquie, New World Island.” It traces the move of the family to a new Volcanic Island in the Pacific Ocean to escape the intrusions of the federal government. That same year, I published the sequel.

My next adventure in fiction writing was “Considering the Ant. Memoirs of Samuel Guardyall,” published in 2017. It’s about a man, who after his wife died in a car wreck, he gets the news that his grandfather left him a log cabin. He works at adjusting to the hardships of life without any modern conveniences.

These three novels were quickly self-published without any edits of my grammatical errors. I was too excited to spend months or a year correcting those English misdeeds. I wanted to hold these books in my hand and be able to give them away to friends and relatives, so the errors were also throughout.

My next adventure in the publishing industry in 2017 was a book named “Rummagings.” It’s a compilation of my online blog posts from 2005-2007.

Then in 2018, I put together a short history of, “School Bus Then and Now.” That was a give away to my friends and associates of the Broken Arrow School bus transportation system. I was retiring after ten plus years of transporting kids to and from schools. I did that to keep busy after my full-retirement from a twelve year career position with the City of Tulsa as a golf course greens keeper.

Now, “Just a Matter of Time, Until the End of Time,” is on the market. Over four-months sometime in the future, this Christian family of four deals with persecution and the continual oversight of the government. I finished the original draft over a year ago, but this time I wanted to do it right. It was edited, corrected, and professionally edited again, sentence by sentence.

That, my folks, is the history of my putting thoughts and ideas in black and white.

Just a Matter of Time –– Until the End of Time

From the first Chapter.

Janice Amwestson carefully steps between the rows of vegetables in her backyard garden alongside the greenhouse. She looks over the roof of the greenhouse, her ears tuned for a whirling noise. She directs her gaze over the house, into the blanket of treetops, as the rising sun illuminates the scattered white fluffy clouds. “Another beautiful day.” Her husband, Robert, hollers out the back door, “Honey, I’m leaving. I may be a bit later at the office. I’m taking the bike. Got that meeting tomorrow evening.”
“Be careful,” Janice replies as the screen door squeaks.
Janice has a wicker basket over her left forearm that holds a few of the selectively chosen first ripened tomatoes, an immature head of iceberg lettuce, and a few cucumbers. She methodically bites into a tomato concentrating on the taste. Looking at the other half, she wonders at the complexity of the intricate design. “How magnificent this is.”

That’s the title and sub-title of my new novel soon to be released. Yippee, I scream in delight. Finally, after penning the original draft for about a year, then another year of changes, edits, corrections, and more edits to this finality.

Dark Cloud

The last two days have been numb, a dark cloud hanging over me. Couldn’t get away from the TV. College Football? Who won? The Cubs, yeah, they lost another. Movies. Huh? The chair was comforting, nice and soft, within easy reach of the coffee cup and snacks. Sunday Professional football. Who won? Who cares? When will I hear from that publisher? Been working on that novel for two years. If yes, then what? Requirements from them to publicize the book. Yuck, not my cup of java. Finally, had enough and got out of the house. Saw a good friend and shared burden. A smile and the dark cloud started moving away. Back to the chair and more movies. Finally, prepping to crawl into bed when a remembrance of a hymn broke across the numbness.

“When I in awesome wonder, 
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made; 
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder, 
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, 
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, 
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!” 

Yes, all is well with my soul.

Is Christianity a religion?

I’m beginning to dislike the word ‘religion.’  Whenever I see the word ‘religion’ in an article, I think of all those religions of the world; Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, etc., as a choice one makes to accept, to believe in, and to follow those ways and means. Is choosing a religion the same as the choice of a Chrysler over a Buick, a Ford, Chevy or Volkswagen? A cup of coffee in the morning instead of hot tea or milk. What basis do we use when choosing which to follow? Do we have to accept one or the other? Or, nothing. Atheism is considered a religious belief.

So let’s start by looking at how Webster defines ‘religion.’

“Religion is:

  • a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices
  • a body of beliefs and practices regarding the supernatural and the worship of one or more deities.
  • the service and worship of God or the supernatural
  • commitment or devotion to religious faith or observance.

We don’t and can’t see the law of gravity, but we see its effects when a coin falls out of our pocket. We don’t see, taste, smell, feel or hear the air we breathe, yet it’s there. We don’t see the waves of sound moving from the lips of another to our ears, yet it happens, and we don’t feel it either. We don’t see the aroma of a rose bud reaching our nose. These sensations are invisible, but yet, they are just as real as these fingers of mine pushing on the keyboard. Are these sensations we don’t see just a system of religious attitudes?

Jesus was a real physical human being in a body like ours: two legs, two arms, eyes, ears, a nose as part of the head with hair, two lips, all together connected by a neck to the shoulders, chest, hips connected by bones, arteries, muscles to the knees and the same to the ankles and toes. He breathed, ate bread, and smelled the roses just like we do.  His seed was planted inside a woman’s egg to make a human, which grew as you did within your mother’s womb. He was born and given that first breath of air. After some thirty years of physically moving here and there upon this planet, He was whipped and hung on a cross, where He gasped and exhaled that last breath of air. His life-less physical body was wrapped as the custom was then, laid to rest and secured in a tomb.

But then that unseen dimension, the spiritual element intervened, and the spiritual Jesus entered that same dead body. The stone rolled away, and He walked and talked again on this physical earth. There are eye-witnesses to it. We have their testimony. We can read about it, just like we read about Thomas Edison and the invention of a light bulb. It’s historical. It was real. His life changed the world and people like us for the last 2000 years.

 

Christianity is more real than a system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A new One.

The newest novel is finished, but not yet published. Yee Gads, to get something published nowadays is like walking , thumbing one’s way through ten-feet high bales of hay.  But anyway, it’s still one day at a time, one key punch after another and then the end comes with a big shout followed by a deep breath of relaxation. Yes, the title is: “Just a Matter of Time.” Subtitled: “Until the end of Time.”

We all rise to a world of technology advancing faster than a Nascar Corvette. Where will it take us five, ten, twenty years down the road, or even just two years. How will this technology of iPhones doing more than a desk-top computer of three years ago affect our communications, our social network (which used to be just extended families), and our daily work lives.  Huh? Think about it. That’s what Just a Matter of Time delves into. The daily lives of a family of four over three months.

Election Noise

“Make some noise, let’s hear it.” The electronic sign bellowed out to the 50,000 fans watching the ball game.

That is my summary of the election yesterday. Noise.

We still have the rule of law. We still have Two houses of Congress. In two years we’ll vote again.

There are two kinds of noise; natural and manufactured.

It’s the loud, consistent rumbling on the airwaves that gets our attention. It’s the thunder that causes us to look out the window. It’s noise, it’s the alarm clock that wakes us from slumber. The loud arguments between relatives disturb the kiddies. The media and what we hear on the tube, see on videos, hear from the media, from Hollywood, from Washington, and locally is manufactured noise that has the effect of dividing us.

Then there is the natural noise of nature. Thunder and lightning, volcanoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, the roar of a lion or bear, the woofs of a rabid dog, the hissing of a snake. We run to take cover. We huddle together. We reach out for a solid safe hand to hold onto. It’s the natural noise that draws us together.

The Psalmist wrote, “Be still and know that I am God.”

Independence.

July the 2nd

During this tumultuous time of 242 years ago fighting off the English since 1773, the colonies wanted badly to gain independence one way or another. The southern colonies desired to keep slavery as their right while the north fought against it. The two sides eventually came together agreeing to declare their right to govern themselves as one united nation.

Thomas Jefferson was quietly composing the declaration of Independence to send to the British crown. Even though he was a slave holder as was Washington, he wrote: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (back in those days the term ‘all men’ included all of humanity regardless of sex, race or nationality) are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable (impossible to take away or give up) rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Let us not ever forget it, or as Ben Franklin has been quoted saying, “We must hang together or surely we will hang separately.”

 

July the 3rd.

It was yesterday 242 years ago that the colonies agreed to declare their independence, and not until 6 days later when the official declaration was read to the people of Philadelphia. No instant news in those days as news traveled slowly by horseback and sailing ships across the Atlantic delivering the news to England on August 20th: “The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America.”

A couple days before the end of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, George Mason stood up – a delegate from Virginia, genius, brilliant – and he said, ‘If Congress shall turn oppressive, the only way to reform what’s taking place is through violence. We must give the people the power to address a tyrannical Congress,

Article V of the Constitution provides a means where the states have the right to propose Amendments when ratified by 3/4th of the States, it would be valid to all Intent and Purposes.

It was not until 1938 when Congress declared the 4th of July as a federal holiday to be enjoyed by all. Our customs of celebration has changed over the years, from an earlier custom of building towering pyramids, assembled from barrels and casks and setting it on fire. Currently, we hold BBQ’s, picnics along a lakeside, a campfire, family gatherings in the backyards with sparklers and our own purchased legal fireworks, and then to view the local fireworks displays. We will perhaps record the Macy’s celebration in NYC to watch later.  This Year Hallmark is broadcasting a White House celebration as the President, and First Lady will commemorate the day by welcoming military families for an afternoon picnic on the south lawn and later viewing the fireworks display put on by the National Park Service.

Happy Independence.

 

July the 4th.

The last paragraph of that declaration.

“We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”

Cicero was murdered in 43 B.C. What might he have said that enlightened the Declaration of 1776?  “There is a true law, a right reason, conformable to nature, universal, unchangeable, eternal, whose commands urge us to duty, and whose prohibitions restrain us from evil,”

“It is not one thing at Rome and another at Athens; one thing today and another tomorrow; but in all times and nations this universal law must forever reign, eternal and imperishable,” Cicero said. “God himself is its author, its promulgator, its enforcer.”

What did Hamilton think of this argument?  “The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for, among old parchments, or musty records,” Hamilton wrote in 1775. “They are written, as with a sun beam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.”

Then there was Jefferson: “God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious People. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” — John Adams.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Concord Hymn”

R.W. Emerson

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.

He penned these few lines about the famous Battles of Lexington and Concord, the first official engagement between Britain and the Colonies in Americas beginning on April 19, 1775, which lasted eight and a half years. The American Revolution finally ended on September 3, 1783, with America and the King of England signing the Treaty of Paris.

This document was signed by 56 Americans wanting to be free and independent, many of whom gave their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor.

“When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

Tonight, when you see and hear the fireworks exploding, think of the shot heard around the world.