Diamond in the Rough  

23.12.08

I wanted to start this post with an excerpt from Eve's Daughters by Lynn Austin, but the copyright won't let me. I could write and ask permission, I suppose, but between the time, money, and hassle, I won't. While I can't use the actual quote though, I can give you a rough idea of what it said. A grandmother is talking to her granddaughter as she prepares to move into a retirement home. While they are packing, the granddaughter finds a piece of coal and is, naturally, somewhat confused. When she asks her grandmother about it, the grandmother replies that it isn't a piece of coal, it's a diamond-in-the-making, and that G-d will use pressure and stress to turn it into something beautiful.


Do you know what the diamond making process is?

First, plant matter dies, and if buried quickly enough it fossilizes. The layers of fossil get buried under the earth, and with the right amount of pressure and humidity, it turns into coal. If the pressure is high enough and maintained long enough, eventually the coal begins to turn into a diamond. I don't know how many years it takes, and I'm not sure how I would find out, but I do know it takes quite a long time. I'm willing to bet on a minimum of a hundred years, though it is just a guess. Think about that.


First, some kind of death is required. Then, after the plant is buried, it sits alone in the dark for years, with the weight of the world on its shoulders crushing the life out of it. And for no immediate purpose. It turns into coal! Why would anyone want to be coal? The characteristics of coal, as so eloquently put by Brandon, are 'dark, hard, lumpy, not much fun to play with, but fun to burn.'


Does that sound familiar? Don't give up, it's only a little longer until you're finished. You're already more than halfway through. After it becomes coal, yet more stress is applied. Yes, I know, you don't exactly need MORE stress and you're tired of sitting alone in the dark. Why not just dig yourself out? You can't do that, because if you do, you'll never be finished. If a piece of coal is taken out of the ground before the process is finished, it will always be just a piece of coal, fit for nothing except burning. But if you are patient and endure all the stress and pressure and trials, you will become a diamond.


Some interesting facts about diamonds, I learnt this when I was ten years old and I went on a school trip to the local Bluestone works where they cut up bluestone into paving stones. A diamond is the hardest mineral on earth. A blade made of diamonds can cut stone and not go blunt, in fact, the only thing that can cut diamond is diamond. The stuff is virtually indestructible.


A diamond goes through a long hard process. It dies, it is buried, it sits alone in the dark under intense, extreme pressure or many years, only to turn into coal.Then it undergoes even more dark lonely years, even greater pressure, but a miracle is happening!When it finally emerges, the diamond is a diamond. It is beautiful. It is valuable. It is indestructible.


Wouldn't you rather be a diamond than a lump of coal? Don't give up. Be patient. Life may seem dark or lonely now, but a miracle is taking place, and it's worth the wait.

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Storybook World, Pt 2  

2.12.08

Okay, Leo told me what I needed to know, and now I'll have a crack at Part Two. Thanks heaps, Leo :)

******

On the contrary, they, just like us, tend to forget their author. They forget that there is more going on than what they can see and hear, and just like us, they can't see the end of the story. They don't know why certain things have to happen, because it doesn't make sense till much later, and sometimes the characters themselves never find out why things happened. Sometimes the whys can only be seen from outside the story.

And that's hard to deal with. It's hard wondering why G-d lets things happen. In our limited sense of justice, bad things shouldn't happen to good people. Bad things for bad people, good things for good people. You take out what you put in. It sounds fair, and is in fact a Biblical perspective. Except that we forget that this life is not all there is. Sometimes, bad things will happen to good people. And most of the time we never find out why.

Our struggles are real. Our fears and pain are real. Don't get me wrong on that, but we do need to understand that there is more going on than we can see. There is a story being written, and you are the main character. It's very rare that you will come across a good story that doesn't have some pain, some turmoil in its pages. I have never seen such a book.

In your life, there will be hard times, there will be difficult decisions, there will be pain and loss. But there will also be love and redemption and joy beyond any of our imaginations. Everybody knows that the hero always wins, and light always beats darkness, and I believe that's ultimately true of our lives. Never give up, never give in. Never lose your faith in the author who loves you and who knows your whole story better than you do. Never stop loving, never stop hoping, and never break the Circle.

And remember, there is more than you can see.

Love you all.

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Storybook World, Pt 1  

1.12.08

I've been working on this for a week and it's still not finished. I'm waiting on some scholarly help and some fresh inspiration to finish it off ;)

Storybook World

So I had an interesting conversation with my brother the other night, involving Dekker of course, but this time it was interesting enough to warrant a post about it. I happened to say that I'd like to live in a storybook world. Not so much because life would be better there, but there's just this inbuilt desire in me to go talk to Anne Shirley or Thomas Hunter. Just because.

And then my brain just went *whoosh* and into hyper mode and now I'm writing a lesson from it.

So. I know Brandon still disagrees with me on this, we haven't got it all hammered out yet, but here's how I'm seeing things right now. We are characters in a story, and G-d is our author. Some of the characters know him, some know about him, and others either don't have a clue or refuse to believe in him. But it doesn't really matter, whether a character believes in it's author or not, every story does have an author.

In the Thrillogy, for example, Thomas died. Not once, but five times. It pretty much looked like the end. I mean, you can't really get more ended than 'dead' can you? And yet.. the author had it all planned out, all under his control. Nothing happened unless the author said it could, and when he said it could happen, it happened for a reason.

In the book The Novelist by Angela Hunt, the main character, Casey, is a writer. As part of a writing course she's teaching, she agrees to write something different from her usual genre as an example to her students. As any of you who are writers know happens, the world of her novel takes on a life of it's own. In this world, the characters are aware of Casey, but they do not understand her, they can't see her or comprehend her. They know she exists and they know her rules, but only because she gave them that knowledge. The characters in Casey's world are real, they love, they hope, they cry, they bleed, and they make decisions for themselves. And they can die. Their fears are real, their struggles are genuine. Just because they live in a storybook world with an author who loves them directing the plot doesn't mean their lives are easy.

To be continued...

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