Tag Archives: sorrow

Still looking for help.

Seeking Safety

By Janet Stobie

I’m still working on the “Pitch” for my new novel,  Seeking Safety.  For those of you who don’t know, “Pitch” is writer’s language for the words that go on the back cover of my book. These words need to catch the reader’s interest without giving away too much about the book. This pitch is a little long. I’ve incorporated the suggestions you have made from my last effort. Please consider making a comment. I need your help.  My questions for you my readers, and supporters are:

1. Does this pitch tweek your interest?

2. If you picked the book up in a bookstore, maybe because you liked the front cover, would reading this on the back cover push you toward buying the book?

Pitch for Seeking Safety by Janet Stobie  (sequel to Fireweed and also a stand alone novel).

Seventeen year-old Renée Grenville and her dad Steve are slowly rebuilding lives. Serena (Renée’s mom) was killed in a car crash two years ago. Now, Steve’s readiness for a new relationship threatens to topple Renée’s fragile security. While researching her mom’s past for a school project, Renée discovers a tiny book with faded writing. Serena’s great grandmother, a Barnardo child had kept a diary.

Renée and Steve’s lives are further complicated by the arrival of a refugee family in Catalpa Creek bringing joy and terror. Close friendships offer joy, sorrow and guilt to both Renée and her dad.

Seeking Safety is a coming of age novel, not just for Renée, but her Dad and the Catalpa Creek community.


Thought for the Day


 See, smile, feel God’s peace with you today.

Peace Be With You!

This morning, I am mourning the deferral of a very special interview I had scheduled with Raheel Raza as part of my research for my next book, One More Step even though there is no deadline for its completion.

As I write this, my imagination speaks. “See God smile and hear God’s words: ‘Peace be with you. Writing this book is your ministry, yes, but first and foremost I call you to live well each moment of today. Enjoy this unexpected freedom as my precious gift.”

Changes in our plans are sometimes difficult. Today, receive with peace whatever task is added or taken away.  Whether your moments bring joy, sorrow, or confusion, hear and receive Jesus’ words to his disciples: “Peace be with you.” Speak them to yourself and to others, often.


Easter Is Coming!!!!

Good Friday?
Good Friday?

Christians are talking about Easter. What does it mean? For some, Easter is just another long weekend. For youngsters, the Easter bunny comes. For Christians, Easter is a journey from the pain of Good Friday to the joy of Jesus’ resurrection. We call this week “Holy Week” – the last week of Jesus’ life as a human being walking this earth.

Jesus begins his week angry with the injustice that is happening everywhere. At the temple in Jerusalem, he flips over the tables of the money changers who are cheating the poor. He sets the frightened sacrificial animals free. His voice thunders out across the courtyard, “It is written, my house will be called a house of prayer, but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.” And that is only Monday.

By Thursday, he has set up a last meal with his friends. He knows what’s coming. He needs their companionship in his pain. He offers them his last bits of wisdom. “Remember me. Serve others. Trust in God.” And finally after all the torture, all the pain, comes the relief of death.

Many of us have walked this journey with a loved one. My mother suffered with a cancer so excruciating the strongest drugs brought no relief. Yes, death can bring release.

We have named the day of Jesus’ death “Good Friday” for two reasons. It brought Jesus release from his anguish, and it was the first step toward his transformation, his new life. For Jesus and for all of us, death is not the end, it is the beginning: the beginning of a new life. That’s the Easter story.

This coming week, think about your life, pick out the glimpses of new life – of Easter – that mark the guide posts in your journey through joy and sorrow. Watch and pray. Know that Easter is coming as surely as the sun will rise every morning.

“Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: ‘I have seen the Lord!”  (John 20:18)

How Can Scars Be Beautiful?

Let Yourself Feel.

The last few days I have been thinking about wounds. Kahlil Gibran says the “the deeper the well that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” While living a very emotionally flat life, certainly can shrink the depth of  your sorrow, it will also shrink the depth of your joy.

For many years, I tried hard not to feel deeply. If I kept busy enough, I could ignore the pains of living. If the pain did seep through, I would make excuses. I remember often feeling on the outside as a teenager. Because I was two years younger than my school peers, I used my age as my excuse for not being included in the “in-group”.  What I didn’t understand at the time, if I don’t let myself feel the pain, I wouldn’t be able to feel the joy deeply either. It’s not easy to feel sorrow, but I remind myself that my well for joy is deepening.

Jesus also experienced the pain of grief. He wept when he heard about the death of his friend Lazarus. We hear his disappointment when he says, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. (Matthew 23:37) His rage resounded in the quiet temple when he tipped over the tables of the moneychangers and roared, “My house is a house of prayer but you have made it a den of thieves.”  Jesus didn’t hide from his emotions.

When we are wounded we will have scars. We can consider them ugly and try to hide them. Or we can learn from them, wear them as badges of honour that have taught us about life. We can wear our scars as the outward sign of a deep well within us, a well open to receive joy in all its abundance.