I share this article by Ellie Gustafson with permission from Linda Wood Rondeau.

IN ROUGHLY TWO MONTHS, I’LL TURN 85. I NO LONGER NEED A TELESCOPE TO SEE WHAT’S AHEAD, THOUGH REVERSING THE SCOPE MIGHT PULL THE PAST INTO FOCUS.

Occasionally, something stirs an old memory. Candy, for instance. Because I knew the word well, my sister would spell it out. “Can Eleanor have some C-A-N-D-Y?” I caught onto that pretty fast and started asking for A-O-7-8.

One of my early jobs was raking leaves in the fall. Glorious fun! First, you leap into the piles; then comes the delight of burning them in the driveway.

IN OUR GROCERY STORE, A CERTAIN SONG KEEPS POPPING UP, AND MEMORIES OF SKATING COME ROLLING BACK.

BUT I HAD TO GROW UP AND FACE THE REAL WORLD—WORK, EDUCATION, FINDING A MATE.

God managed that very nicely, and sooner than we expected, I turned up pregnant. I clearly remember sitting on the bed, staring reality in the face: I had a baby in me, and it was going to have to come out. It did—16 days late, after 5 days in labor. We actually had two children and a miscarriage before the time we had “scheduled” our first child.

After Fuller Seminary in California, we were called to West Congregational Church in Haverhill MA. The parsonage was old but far grander than any place we’d previously lived. Our first Big Event was a Christmas Open House. A fantastic success, and our parishioners loved it.

During the next ten years, Jim got his PhD and shifted to teaching philosophy at the local community college. Leaving the parsonage meant building a house—with our own hands. I served as both carpenter and quality control: “That’s NOT plumb; take it out; do it again.” With all those do-overs, we actually built the house twice.

I began honing my talent for writing. My first published article—“I Saw a Thing Today”—came from a chance encounter with several weasels along a stone wall on our tree farm in Vermont. Story, however, was my great love, and I moved on to fiction. Six novels have given me a wild ride.

Appalachian Spring and its research trip to West Virginia.
Wild Harvest, borrowing from our own tree-farm experiences.
Middle Night, a book almost nobody liked but perhaps the most creative of my novels.
The Stones: A Novel of the Life of King David that “required” a trip to Israel.
Dynamo, the story that grew out of my great love for horses.
An Unpresentable Glory—which
See! Buy! Read! I’m told it is page-turning good.

WHAT HAVE I LEARNED IN NEARLY 85 YEARS?

That I’m not as smart as I once thought.
That God is gracious beyond belief.
That my ongoing task is to lay down the telescope and magnify the One who formed me according to his glorious, loving design.

Ellie—

Born in a NJ county that had more cows than people.
Went to Wheaton College IL.
Married a multi-tasker; 3 kids, 8 grands, with a great-grand on the way.
Tried on the cloak of writing; found it fit well.
God first touched me through story, and he still speaks through story. I love Him passionately.

An Unpresentable Glory:

Who is this half-dead man who shows up in Linda’s award-winning garden—too weak to tend to his own personal needs? She takes him into her house and cares for him an entire week and only later learns who he really is. An investigative reporter uncovers the secret week, and both Linda and her guest become a spectacle in the eyes of the world.

THE BOTTOM LINE: God can cover our messes with his glory—if we submit to and trust him wholeheartedly.

An Unpresentable Glory https://tinyurl.com/y9lpft6a

Dynamo  http://tinyurl.com/otdxwad

The Stones  http://tinyurl.com/nf5o63d

Email: egus@me.com

Website:  www.eleanorgustafson.com/

Blog www.eleanorgustafson.com/  HOME, scroll down

Amazon Page: www.amazon.com/author/eleanorgustafson

Twitter: @EgusEllie

Facebook: Ellie Gustafson. https://www.facebook.com/ellie.gustafson.

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