Speaking to me on the first day of the New Year, a decree was issued, “And you shall give birth to a book. You shall call it’s name DO YOU FEEL SAFE TODAY? It shall be a blessing to all who read, learn and know of love and the curse of living without love. It will display evil in its vibrant colors and encourage faith in healing.”
“Whatever you do, Julia, don’t say that God told you to write this book.”
But the truth is that’s what happened. Here is what I had to say: “Come on, I don’t want to write a book. I’m terrible with long projects and I don’t want to think or write that way.” Of course I argue and then realize it’s for nought. Writing poetry, painting and blogging, speaking the truth as I know it, is my passion. Listening to God in prayer and submission is also. Recently, his loving hand guided me from sickness to health. As a result, sometimes I’m more willing to honor his guidance and wisdom.
“Lord, can’t you go away and leave me alone, please, it is New Years Day after all. My children are here and we are having friends over.” I try one more time to get my way. But we all recognize the voice when it comes. And we know, it is not going away no matter how we plead, “Find someone else this time, somebody besides me.”
I was sitting in a bamboo chair, doing breath exercises outside on the deck, when I heard the proclamation. It was in the midst of a passive exhalation, when the voice came with the mandate for a book. Eventually, I stopped grumbling and looked into the sky, “Yes, Lord, I will do it. I will write this book for you, my children and myself.” Even as I was agreeing, hundreds of brown birds flew from east to west, roosting in the tree above my head. Suddenly, in unison, they fly away, their wings creating synchronous crosses lifting above as I pray. Proclaiming sweet love and support if I will embark on this endeavor, write a book about my work with traumatized children. My wrestling match with God over their stories. So let’s begin, for who am I to dismiss three hundred brown crosses waving the banner of truth overhead?