River Jordan: The Power of Story
Thus spake River Jordan at the Calvin Festival in mid-April. I had wandered into her talk titled "Truth Finds a Way," acting on an impulse. And that spontaneous decision turned into one of the highlights of my time there.
River (yes, she did change her name to "River," which her mother now calls her) writes both fiction (Saints in Limbo, Miracle of Mercy Land) and non-fiction, but she is probably best known for her memoir, Praying for Strangers. In it she tells that at a time when both her sons were being deployed, one to Iraq and one to Afghanistan, she happened to make a New Year's resolution to pray for a stranger every day for a year. She didn't even plan to tell these strangers what she was doing for them. And she planned to stop after 365 days. But sometimes she did tell them, and amazing conversations happened. After a year she felt compelled to continue what she then felt had become a "spiritual discipline"... until she did it for another year, and another, and now it's simply part of who she has become.
When River started writing as a young girl, she thought people had a limited number of words they could speak. Consequently, she was rather quiet. Only in the third grade did she discover she had an unlimited word count. By three years later, she had been discovered as a writer.
During those formative years her friends would go play while she would craft stories—a process she describes as "controlled schizophrenia." Killing one of her characters, she says, was like losing anyone who had ever been close to her.
She points to literary author Kevin Brockmeir as an influence, and she describes the first three pages of Leif Enger's book, Peace Like a River, as some of the best prose ever.
When she asked our audience a question... I don't even remember what it was...the sight of many hands flying up surprised her. She exclaimed, "Beautiful! Like dolphins jumping." That right there explained a lot. The woman must think in simile and metaphor.
Raised in the rural south, River says she grew up "where truth grew out in stories." The first line of her first novel is, "I was in Memphis the night I had the dream." She loves the Chick-fil-A Youtube video because of its reminder that everyone has a story:
"Be inspired by your very life," she said. "You do not have to tell everyone your stuff. But tell the truth. Tap into the truth of your life." She encourages writers to tell "what's important to you and it'll be important to other people.... All of us have been hurt.... I am a blessed mess. Don't wait till you are perfect."
- Octavia CarterHello I'm New Here!!
- Octavia CarterHello I'm New Here!!
- Octavia Carter just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost May Jesus Christ Be The Ultimate Treasure We Always Seek by Debbie Harris..
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost Father Who Can We Graciously And Humbly Walk Beside Today Just To Love by Debbie Harris.
- Bryce Johnson just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Bill Reichart published the blogpost 13 Resources For Ministry Leaders Who Struggle with Porn.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Expert Reveals Biggest Concern About Youngsters And Social Media.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Half (54%) Of US Teens Think Life Would Be Better Without Social Media.
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost Roy Lichtenstein's Most Popular Painting is Displayed.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost After Confronting Campus Bully, HS Football Player Gets Suspended.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Conservative Student Is Victim Of ‘Racist Rape Apologist’ Attack Fliers.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Yik Yak app Putting Teens Behind Bars, Police Warn.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Hearing That Things Can Change Helps Teens Dodge Depression.
- Andrew Shivers just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost GIVEAWAY: Win a Framed “The Fault in Our Stars” FULL SIZE Movie Poster [Winner Chosen].
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost ‘Boxtrolls:’ Incredible Animation, Charmless Story.
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost Video of the Day: Dad Lip-Syncs Daughter's Tantrum.
- Michael Ernest published the blogpost SOTW: ‘Chasing After The Wind’ by Alan Powell (Free Friday Download).
- Matt Perman published the blogpost The Drive Video: If You Want Engagement, Self-Direction is Better.
- LuAnn Braley published the blogpost BOOK REVIEW/INTERVIEW: The Unexpected Earl by Philippa Jane Keyworth.
- Shane Blackshear published the blogpost Seminary Dropout 55: Gary Black Jr. – Co-author of The Divine Conspiracy Continued.
- Lori Fogleman published the blogpost ‘Believe Me': Alum’s thought-provoking film now in theaters.
- Michael Ramsey published the blogpost Stress Kills!!! Here's 3 Ways To Do Something About It.
- Larry Carter published the blogpost How The New Fall TV Season Reminds Me Of The Gospel.
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Suffering Paradigm (Seminar Videos).
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Personal Responsibility Paradigm (Seminar Videos).
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost 20 Approaches to Battling Depression-Anxiety as Suffering.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘Hellion’ is A Wild, Family-Driven Ride Worth Taking.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2′ is Cool, Uncommitted.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost “Kidnapped for Christ” Review: The Terror of Teens.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Pieces Together a Winning Team.
- Ashley Howland published the blogpost Talking about cancer on WFAA’s ‘Two Chairs’ series.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Get Excited: New ‘Believe Me’ Trailer Validates Everything We Thought.
- solomon david published the blogpost Micromax Canvas Nitro Launched for Rs 12,990 in India.
- solomon david published the blogpost 20 Mobile (iOS, Android) App & Web Prototyping Tools – Part2.