No, I’m not talking about the physical calendar, but my spiritual one. (And the photo above is certainly not summer. I just couldn’t resist sharing this family photo from a chilly hike up a mountain near Boulder, Colorado! We were all there to welcome my son’s new dog into the family and to visit him in his new surroundings. Any day spent with the people in this photo brings me great joy. I don’t take for granted the love this family shares and how being together is laughter-filled and drama-free.)
But, back to summer!
In my last blog I talked about my book In Season. Well, a few years ago, I was resting through a delicious and lengthy winter season where God was cutting back so much of the activity surrounding my life and letting me settle into some new graces he was sowing in my heart. Then, I came through a short spring season of watching God renew some of his promise in my heart and giving me a peek at where we might be going next. Now, it seems I’ve arrived in the full-on drama of summer where increased activity and the pressure of the enemy’s ploys, help what’s going on inside us to mature the harvest. Here’s where the grapes grow softer and sweeter. So, it’s a crazy time and I’m hoping it doesn’t last long. I would love to get through harvest and find my way back to winter’s rest. It’s my favorite season. But the timing really isn’t up to me, is it? And I do trust the one whose hand it’s in.
So, let me give you some updates for those of you interested in what’s going on around here:
This week I head back to Dallas. This time it isn’t for wider conversations about the journey, but for three of us to see about writing a book together that will speak into the anger and vitriol of our national dialog and open doors for people to find language that helps bring healing, instead of that which causes hurt. Also, as a result of my TEDx talk a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been asked to advise a university out there about some of their policies that are causing great conflict. So, back I go for a brief trip.
Then Sara and I will be headed to upstate NY. After that I’ll be speaking at a Christian high school in Orange County and having an evening for folks in the area to get together. After that I’ll be on the east Coast, in Virginia, for early June.
In addition, I’m currently in conversations about future travel to West Virginia, the Kiev, Ukraine, British Columbia, and a return to North Carolina, but as you know I don’t schedule these things too far out because I learned years ago that a hardened schedule makes it difficult to catch the wind of the Spirit when something more propitious crosses my path that can’t be delayed. You can see all my scheduled travel on my Travel Page. If you’d like to be notified when I’m coming to your area you can sign up on our email list and include your address.
For those who don’t get enough audio of me, (and that’s hard to believe), I’ve been a guest on the following podcasts recently:
The Vince Coakley Show has begun a semi-weekly series on Beyond Sundays as part of their Faith-Focus Fridays. When available, I’ll be on for ten minutes at 11:05 Eastern Daylight Time, 8:05 Pacific on Friday mornings. You can listen in live by punching the “Listen” button on their website. You can listen to the first one on their podcast. Faith focus Friday starts at 32:55.
Fearless Questions with Jeff Blackburn, invited me on to talk about Beyond Sundays as well. This is how they set it up: “When nearly half of Americans who consider themselves Christians only operate outside of the institutional church…it’s worth talking about why. Wayne Jacobsen returns to help us navigate this phenomenon.”
Confronting Normal with Cindy and Renae where they had a lot of questions of teaching children to live loved if they aren’t part of a Sunday school class. Here’s a quote they featured on their website: “I think a lot of (parenting) is being sensitive to what God is doing and aware that you’ve got a little child here who is hopefully learning to find Jesus as a real presence in the universe and not just the end of a theological construct.”
We Didn’t Talk About It. This site just posted an audio version of the story I told for the Ventura County Storytellers Project last March. It’s about the earliest days of Sara’s and my relationship. You can see the video version here.
The TEDx talk. I know many of you are waiting for the video of my TEDx talk at Abilene Christian University last month, entitled “Differences Do Not Make Us Enemies.” It will still be another four-to-six weeks until those videos go up. I’m sorry it is taking so long, but I will let you know on this blog when it does. (If you’re not subscribed to this blog, you can do so in the box at the top right of this page.)
I’ve got three projects I’m involved with now. One is drawn from my days working with BridgeBuilders called The Language of Healing, which I talked about above in my return to Dallas.
I’ve also begun work on a new novel that I’ve been carrying in my heart since before The Shack. It is a bit of a supernatural story of transformation, but in a very different context. And this one will take a while, but I am loving every moment I get to work on it.
Finally, I’m still helping my friend on Lucien’s Crossing, a novel about two boys, one a plantation owner’s son, and the other a slave, and their relationship as children, through adolescence, the War, and into adulthood. I am so excited about my friend’s work on this book. It is one of my favorite reads ever and I can’t wait to share it with all of you some day.