The Literary Corner: Renegade Writer’s Guild
Published 9:19 am Thursday, April 7, 2022
By Stephanie Williams Dean
Lately, God’s been winking at me. You might ask how that happens – referred to as getting a God wink. We go about our days, deciding when to get up, what to eat, how we spend our day, choosing which turn to take on the road, deciphering what to do next, or where to focus our next efforts. How many choices do you think we have on any given day? I’m sure it’s many. We might not even recognize them as choices – but they are. And then we get a little help in our decision-making process – because God gives us a clue, nod, or wink.
Simply put, He lets us know we’re on the right track. God makes it clear – with a Godly wink. Now, this gift can come in many ways. But what’s most important is getting prepared to receive it and how we interpret it. But how do we know what to do with a God wink – when we don’t even recognize it as such? Many discount the wink as a coincidence or merely good luck. But not hardly.
People are on the move every day. They rush around, don’t slow down, never stop to smell the roses, and speed through life – then wonder why they need those anxiety pills. Slow down, folks. Don’t let life run away with you – while you miss your best gifts – the God winks meant for you. One has to get to a quiet, calm place in your life where you realize that God’s speaking to you – maybe not verbally – but through little nudges from the Holy Spirit within or a full-fledged, unmistakable wink. He’s saying, “I’m right here with you on this one!”
Recently, I saw these beautifully decorated, small, resurrection cross cookies on the internet. I vowed right then to hunt for a cross cookie cutter. A few days later, a friend and I headed up to Mt Airy for a day trip. On our final stop at an antique store, I mentioned to her that I wanted to find a cross cookie cutter. A few minutes later, she came up to me with her hand balled in a fist. She held her arm out to me and uncurled her fingers. An old, tin, cross cookie cutter was right in the middle of her palm! You could have knocked me over with a feather! God Wink! It hadn’t been 5 minutes since those very words left my mouth.
Now I’ve done a lot of antique shopping in my lifetime. You might think it’s a coincidence, but I’ve NEVER run across a cookie cutter in the form of a cross. God wanted that cross for me. And He saw to it that I got one. Why? Because he wanted me to bake those cross cookies and share them.
And along with the cookies – He wanted me to share the Gospel. The Gospel’s the story of the greatest gift we’ve ever received – our salvation through the resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ. And He wanted me to share this message with you readers, too. God gives us everything we need on this earth. And He gives us the peace and blessed assurance that there’s a life awaiting us after this one. And that cross – that’s what it represents to each and every one of us.
So slow down, be still, be present in the moment, smell the spring flowers, and recognize God’s winks in your own life – then wait and discern what it means. Now is the time.
By Linda H. Barnette
When asked what advice she would give to young people, Supreme Court nominee Brown said,” I would tell them to persevere.”
Although my dad would not have used that particular word, that sentence reminded me of something he said when I was a freshman at Catawba College in 1959.
My parents had one major goal for me, and that was for me to go to college, an opportunity they did not have. They both worked hard for years to save money for that purpose. They also gave me other opportunities, such as music lessons, among others. To help out, I worked at the dime store uptown on Saturdays and during summer vacations and saved my money for school.
In September of 1959, they took me to Zartman Hall on the Catawba campus for what was to be the beginning of a new adventure. Things were strict in those days, especially the rules about leaving campus. Freshmen were not allowed to go home for the first 6 weeks of school, and I remember being very homesick and overwhelmed by my new lifestyle.
When I was finally able to come home for a weekend, it was wonderful—until Sunday afternoon when the time came to go back. I was distraught and did not want to go back. However, thanks to some wise advice from Daddy, I did. He told me if I chose not to go back to Catawba that he felt sure I could get my old job at the dime store back!!!.
All of these years later I still remember those words and how wise he was to tell me what he did. He was telling me to persevere and give college a chance. I have always been happy that I did!!
By: E. Bishop
There are so many days throughout the year set aside for celebrating or commemorating various things. Some are fun days like April Fool’s Day and Halloween; some you had rather forget but can’t like “Tax Day,” and some outrank others in their importance such as Christmas and Easter, but some are bound to be overlooked. A couple of easily excluded days in April might include the National Kiss of Hope Day (April 30), National Volunteer Week (April 17-23), and National Hope Day (April 6). Maybe this will be a reminder.
Hope, like a gleaming taper’s light,
Adorns and cheers the way;
And still, as darker grows the night,
Emits a brighter ray.
by Oliver Goldsmith
Hope is known to be something to help us get through our darkest days. There’s always a chance that something better is going to come our way, God willing. It is in our nature to keep hoping against all odds. As Alexander Pope (Essay of Man) states “Hope springs eternal.”
April was designated as the National Month of Hope and the US Day of Hope is held on the first Wednesday in April each year. It is celebrated in conjunction with the National Child Abuse Prevention Month and started as a campaign by a non-profit group called Mothers in Crisis to raise national awareness of child abuse and neglect. The goal is to encourage others to “think hope” and “make hope connections” in order to help families live drug-free lives, thereby decreasing abuse.
There are many reasons and ways to observe this occasion. You would be helping our future generation of children and giving them hope for a brighter tomorrow. Think of the local charities that help children, domestic violence agencies, homeless shelters (donate or volunteer), raise awareness, and use social media (hashtag#NationalDayofHope) to let your friends know you are participating. A Davie County Resource Guide is published by the Pearls of Empowerment. Some of the agencies listed include Dragonfly House Children’s Advocacy Center, Hope Homes, Family Promise, Smart Start, Just Hope, Inc., Davie Center for Violence Prevention and House of Hope. Go online and see which agency is right for you to offer help.
Hope for a better day matters now more than ever not only for our children but for everyone. After the pandemic and its aftermath, the economic and political issues on the home front and now the crisis in Ukraine would make anyone think that the world is coming to an end soon. But, let us all be more optimistic than that. Let’s look for the light at the end of the tunnel.
And, don’t forget, the last Saturday in April is National Kiss of Hope Day. A simple kiss or a few words of encouragement is all that’s needed sometimes to lift up the spirits of someone whether they are family, friends or complete strangers. Every now and then, take time to listen to the great Beatles song “Imagine” where the last verse is
“You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one.”
RWG Literary Corner
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