Thursday, March 26, 2009


One measure of an author's gift is his or her ability to articulate and maintain the story through a clear perspective or point of view. Through whose eyes is the story being told, and in what position is the reader placed? Simply put, is the story written to make the reader feel he is the main character, able to see from the main character's point of view, or from many characters' point of view? It makes a difference in the intimacy the reader feels between himself and the characters.

Art draws from life. In life, perspective matters deeply. And perspectives change. Last Thursday I was puttering around on Face book contributing some inane banter about something nonsensical or at best, unimportant. The next day, after receiving some tragic news from dear friends, my Face book wall seemed almost obscenely irrelevant. My heart was in first person mode with my friends. The world seemed at best to be in distant third mode or even more removed. At that moment, such notations as, "I took the 'What Kind of Cookie Are You?' test, and I'm Oatmeal Raisin!" seemed a ridiculous waste of our limited time here on earth. The day before? Well . . . I wasn't rushing out to determine what my cookiness was, but the quiz didn't sting or annoy.

There just are some points of view that matter more, some moments that cause crystal clarity about the exquisiteness of life and its purpose. At such times we feel the world should halt for a moment and note that life has altered monumentally for someone, but the grass still needs mowing, the socks need matching, meals need to be prepared, eaten and cleared, and life moves on. It's how it is. It's how it must be, I suppose. The Lord seemingly knew that and gave us a permission slip to move on past grief or pain or sorrow or work. It's written in Ecclesiastes 3:1 and immortalized in Pete Seegers "Turn, Turn, Turn".

So I returned home to find my little two-month-old grandson sleeping in my family room. I never wanted . . . needed to hold a baby more than right then, to shift perspective back to life and joy and routine again.

I doubt I'll ask you what cookie you are today, or even tomorrow for that matter, but it is again a time to smile and seek joy, while always remembering and reaching out to those whose perspective will be one of sorrow for quite a while longer.


  1. I don't know what kind of news you received but I'm guessing the nature of it was grave. I, myself, always feel the need to return to life when being confronted with things like death or dying. Holding a little one would be a perfect way to do that. It's like such events trigger within you a need to connect with that which is VITAL. Plug yourself back in to that which reminds you of living and what is most precious in this world.

  2. Exactly, Heather. You said it so well. Thanks for adding those thoughts!