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Number of Pages: 180
Vendor: InterVarsity Press
Publication Date: 2008
|Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)|
Availability: In Stock
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"With a storyteller's charm and a Bible teacher's grit, L. L. Barkat weaves memoir, humor and spiritual insight together into a satisfying read. She challenges us to open our eyes anew to the amazing graces God lavishes upon us every day, in ordinary and surprising ways."
"L.L. Barkat tells a painful story of abuse and loss. But it is not her story but God's story that takes center stage in this remarkable book. The beautiful and intelligent writing will pull you in, but the deep and uncommon insights will keep you reading. Here is a book full of the wisdom which can only come when real life meets God's grace through God's Word. It is a book meant to be read slowly."
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Located in: USA
Submitted: February 11, 2008
Tell us a little about yourself. I live in an urban area, but I was born and bred in the shadows of the countryside. Deep inside, I long for a life near fields and creeks. I think this longing quietly runs through Stone Crossings, even though it's not the focus of the book.
What was your motivation behind this project? One morning, somewhere between a leg lift and a pushup, Stone Crossings entered my mind in fledgling form. I realized I wanted to write this book as a love letter of sorts, to my broken family, to other broken families, to people who struggle to understand how to grow in their life of faith despite all the stuff that distracts or weighs them down. It would ultimately be a book on spiritual formation, but not the here-are-five-formulas type. Instead, Stone Crossings would follow my faith journey from its inception in a troubled childhood to its maturity in my adulthood, entwine it with Gods stories and weave everything together with images of stones. In this way, it would invite others to taste and recognize the graces in their own faith journeys, encouraging them in their own spiritual formation.
What do you hope folks will gain from this project? We face hard things in lifethe wounds of our dysfunctional pasts, failures in our present relationships, doubts that we are growing into the spiritual people we want to be. In the face of these things, we often hide. But grace calls us into the open. Where have you been, where are you now, where do you want to be? And there, in the light, we can be freed. I hope that Stone Crossings will be a call of grace for others, ultimately bringing growth and freedom.
How were you personally impacted by working on this project? Stone Crossings has been a healer and a teacher. Through it, love found me and offered me a long-needed respite from the burdens of a dysfunctional life. By dysfunctional I partly mean that my mom has been married three times, my dad five, and as a result I have eighteen siblingsreal, steps, halves, etc.! Let me tell you a quick story to express the healing Ive experienced through writing about all this with a pen of grace. One Sunday morning, when Id nearly completed Stone Crossings, I was standing in church. We were singing It Is Well with My Soul. Theres this line that goes, My sin, not in part but the whole, has been nailed to the cross and I bear it no more. My throat closed. My eyes filled up. This image came into my mind, of me stooping before Jesus with a big rock on my back, the burden of years of sinfamily sin, my sin. And Jesus taking that rock and lifting my chin, urging me to stand and bear grace in exchange. A light burden. I believe it was the experience of writing Stone Crossings that was the catalyst for this vision. A vision of me as a grace-bearer. Its not that Ive completely changed as a result, but this vision of me as a grace-bearer feels like a turning point.
Who are your influences, sources of inspiration or favorite authors / artists? Can I say that God is my favorite author? It's true. The Bible is an amazing book, full of adventure, beauty, joys and sorrows. Second to that I've been impressed by the depth of writers like Thomas Merton and Wendell Berry. And I'm inspired by the unique and powerful voices of authors like Walter Wangerin and Annie Dillard.
Anything else you'd like readers / listeners to know: Once, somebody asked me which chapters of Stone Crossings impacted me the most. I had to say that all the chapters impacted me strongly and uniquely. When Id sit down to write, Id always pray first, Tell me what you want to say to me and the world. And I was always overwhelmed by the ensuing tender communications of truth and grace. But two chapters in particular made me weep during the writing processSugar Face, which is frank about my early hatred for and disillusionment with my father, and Olive Press, which poignantly retells the story of Gethsemane as if Jesus were facing a verdict of stoning under sharia law. The Olive Press chapter reminds me that as much as Ive been hurt by the brokenness of my family, Ive also hurt others and Jesus through my own angers. As such, Im overwhelmed that Jesus response to me is not retaliation, but pure love.
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