Friday, November 17, 2006
Armed with my new photos, I created a RomanceWiki www.romancewiki.com profile, sent my wonderful agent, Wes, a copy with a short bio which he will use to add me to his site, and will be sending one to the publisher for the book cover! It's hard to believe that my writing dreams are coming true. I just hope and pray people love the books!
Monday, September 18, 2006
A big "thanks" to Infuze again! Either they like my work or it's pretty easy to get published there (I'm going with, "they like my work")! It's a wonderful e-zine, a great mix of the known and unknown with a wide variety of creative work, opinions, and reviews. Check out my new poem that they published on http://www.infuzemag.com/creative/poetry - scroll down to Desert Rose. Thanks so much for any comments!
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Last week I signed the contract! A three book deal with Broadman and Holman, for three historical, inspirational, romance novels . . . it was a beautiful thing.
It came by Priority Mail. I ripped open the red, white and blue envelope, slid out all that lovely cream and brown marbled paper with the big B&H watermark in the middle. I found (read God provided) an amazing agent who helped me navigate the legaleze and an incredible editor who met us more than half-way, making the changes look like Christmas tinsel and trimmings on a present. My husband took a photo of me signing it . . . such a long time in coming, so many times he has encouraged me and told me, "years from now, you'll back on all of this [waiting] and laugh. It's going to happen." Well, I'm not laughing yet, but the hard years of waiting are already fading a bit. Like holding a newly birthed baby, the months of getting huge, uncomfortable, and psycho (I really struggled with being pregnant!) are fading in the face of what's sitting in my hands. It'll be even better when I'm holding the actual book!
All this brings to my mind the others that have waited. My sister, waiting for her "life" to begin and now, this fall going to Regent University for her beloved psychology degree. My husband, as he waited for years for me to grow up and realize I loved him as much as he loved me (he was sixteen when he knew - so give me a small break). And then there are so many examples God has given us in His word, people always waiting for the "appointed time."
Genesis 18:14 "Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son." (Italics mine).
Sarah and Abraham waited such a long time for their promise. But I love that phrase . . . "the time of life." It makes me think that if a dream or desire comes before its chosen time, would it be the time of death? Would be too much? Not enough? Could it destroy us? Only God knows.
And He does. He really does know when the culmination, the fulfilling prophesy, the time, is exactly right.
All I know, is that I feel like I've been pregnant for ten years and if I don't birth something soon, it's gonna blow! But I've learned patience and hard-won, gut-deep, persistent faith. He wouldn't let me stop believing.
So if you're struggling with wanting something, something that you can't give up on, know I feel your pain and there's a purpose in it. He wouldn't let us languish on the vine. He wants us to bear fruit and fruit . . . sweet, beautiful, succulant fruit, takes time.
I wrote this poem a year or so ago and it just seems fitting, showing how He has it all in the palm of His hand, that He's enjoying us as we come into His purpose.
Can You Imagine
Can you imagine how He made it
created from nothingness
the promises and possibilities of heaven
brought into being by a few spoken words
Can you see His hand as He threw out the stars
like seeds on wind
floating to their place with names of their own
the sun and the moon taking turns, like parents
leading and guiding and lighting our way
What of the great expanse
that perfect combination of breathable air
the puffy clouds that He knew would float
into shapes we could imagine
Then there were fish
in so many shapes and sizes and colors
some make us laugh out loud at their funny faces
others inspire a still silence
so huge, so sleek, so deadly
Fur and feathers, scales and skin
coverings for creatures
scurrying in their forest homes
roaming in hunter stealth among jungle grass
lurking bright-eyed from trees and holes and caves
There are no homeless here
sunning on rocks in the hot of the sun
sparkling backs on slow creeping legs
darting tongues from dragon-like faces
And then, while the hosts of heaven watch
see them gasp as He begins His masterpiece
a sculptor with the perfect mix of clay
He molds the delicate eyes
knowing the glory they will behold
He thoughtfully creates the tiny bones of the ear
knowing the music they will make
Can you imagine it?
so strong and sure in his beauty
intelligence rests on his brow
strength upholds his chest and mighty arms
adventure lures his thoughts
made to protect and guard
made to provide and father
made to delight His maker
We even surprise Him sometimes
picture His surprised delight in man
Now see the woman with me
how lovely in her graces
how her lithe strength is displayed in her garden dance
she dances for her man and her God
See Him implant within her secret places
the seeds of all mankind
See Him gift her with the power of the nations in her hand
how blessed He must have felt to see the handiwork of His creation.
Can you imagine the adventures He planned for us?
When Columbus first sailed and the earth became round in our minds
Sit back with Him on His throne or ride with chariotÂs wings
as He watches the play He has made
His heart wrenching with our tragedies
and soaring with our triumphs
but knowing, always knowing
and hoping that we will choose Him
Can you see His joy when we discover the hidden secrets of our world
when the mysteries of fire and light and heat are made known to us
when the infinite miracles of our bodies, just clay but so much more
are explored as the depths of the oceans or the black of space
Blank pages becoming the stories of our lives
Even now, can you see Him in the laboratory peeking over a shoulder
peering through a microscope on the verge of a discovery
His breath is held still
awaiting the moment when we rear back in sudden understanding
when we get a glimpse of what He knows
Can you see His smile when we studied the birds
took our first flight
see Him beside us in his chariot of fire booming with laughter
at the pure joy of it
Wasn't He center stage when moon dust coated our boots
and we had inched a little closer to Him in His heaven
Beloved, can you see Him smiling and triumphant
when we see the mysteries He made for us
planned since before time began to share with us
just waiting for us to notice
Then, in a moment and yet a lifetime
after we've looked and seen and experienced
can you see His thudding heart
when we look up and notice His Son
when our eyes are full of the blood-spilt glory of Him
the Great I AM
can you imagine His welling heart of love
when we open to Him and return it
He waits for it . . . He longs for it
He planned for it all along . . .
Friday, June 16, 2006
If you haven't discovered it yet, Infuze Magazine is a really great source for artists. Here's what they say about themselves, "Infuze Magazine is about creative people and what they create -- art and entertainment such as film, music, novels & short stories, poetry, artwork, some television shows, comic books, and even video games. We make no distinction between "Christian" and "non-Christian," materials, leaving such labels to the discretion of the reader. But we will only cover creative work that has some measure of moral redeeming value." Homepage is http://infuzemag.com Enjoy!
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
I have been listening to the audio book of “A History of God” by Karen Armstrong and am struck by the repetitive nature of man’s quest to become more than we are. It would seem that since the beginning, man has strived to attain godliness - power over our circumstances and fallen state by means only restricted by our imaginations. The thought that we need to believe in something greater than ourselves to transcend our own experience, a hope of a greater good, a belief in a place of eternity where there is no death, a connection with a powerful being that loves us, protects us and carries us through the pain and travails of life, seems universal and as deeply imbedded as our DNA.
But therein lies the trap. The first Biblical account of man trying to establish his own religion is found in the building of the Tower of Babel. “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth.” (Gen. 11:4) It then says that God came down to see the city and tower that they were making. I can just imagine Him coming down to look it over, impressed but saddened by their rebellion to come up with a religion that they made and controlled. It must have been a dangerous turning point in history, because God stepped in to stop them saying, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them.” Again, God knows so much more than we do. He could have sent an earthquake and caused the tower to tumble, He could have caused their bricks not to dry in the sun, giving them nothing to build with, but He did something far more dramatic, far more reaching into the future. He assured that they couldn’t communicate, confusing their language so they could no longer understand each other. This effectively put a stop to a whole race of unified people starting a religion – for a time. It was only the beginning of our (and Satan’s) efforts to place other gods before Him.
Man invented gods they could understand, relatable with every-day life – gods of fertility, gods of war, gods of health, gods of life after death, gods of nature, tribal gods and household gods. Imagine living your life trying to please all these gods, trying to gain their favor so that they could affect the circumstances of your situation. Imagine the sacrifices (possibly your own children), the fear, the emotional ups and downs depending on whether or not you were “doing it right” so that they might notice you and move something in some heavenly realm for your sake. Is anyone else thinking . . . slavery?
In listening to this CD, I have been struck by my own compulsion to manipulate my God, Jehovah. This last year has been a real test of faith and patience for me, waiting, waiting, waiting for what I hope and believe is my calling to come into being. I’ve had moments of peace and days of doubt, times of faith and times of hopeless, depressive thoughts. As I’ve lived these up and downs, I am horrified to realize that I behave no differently than these previous races. That I have changed God into a god. I’ve begged and fasted, prayed and sprawled face-down on my bedroom carpet in an effort to make Him who I wanted Him to be for me at the time. God help me, God fix this, God intervene on my behalf (in the way I think He should), God take away this trial, God pacify me with some scrap of encouragement. As usual, my thinking is upside down and based on my emotions at the time. Instead, I should be praying, Your will be done, thank-you for never leaving me or forsaking me, Lord I will trust You, I will keep my eyes on You, I will follow You.
Our God, the one true God, is nothing like the false gods of past and present generations. He can’t be manipulated and controlled because He has something that none of those other gods have. Our God is Love. He is love. He . . . is . . . love. The essence of love, the look of love, the feel of love, the sovereignty of love, the majesty of love, the glory of love, an incomprehensible Being of love. His love is beyond anything our imaginations could ever fathom or craft or reach. His love is worthy of our trust. And, for reasons I don’t know, He decided to create us . . . to create me. He is my Creator. I don’t have to manipulate this God of love to move heaven and earth on my behalf. He already has. I just have to believe in it. And if those people in the past could bow down and worship a golden calf, something I know doesn’t have any power because it was created lower than man, then why do I struggle to believe in an all knowing, all powerful, all loving maker of me.
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Copyright 2006 Elena Feliciano
Yeah! It's finally Spring! Here's a fun poem I wrote for Spring.
Ode to the Spring Shoe
Fun and flirty, pattern curvy
Ballerina sweet, flat feet
Beaded toes or tiny sweet bows
Home – slippers – cozy treat
Leather and suede, sashay raid
Swishing skirts, major flirts
Wedges in florals and mints and corals
Sassy sandals – painted toe feat
Girly and twirly, clunky and chunky
Python, croc, real and moc
Metal and stone, from black to bone
Young and old, ensemble complete
Church classic, Easter time basket
Cotton candy, Barbie-doll fancy
Textures unfurl on a good little girl
Mothers and daughters, head to toe treat
Sling-backs and strappy, energy sappy
The pump, the grind, the 5 o’clock mind
Pointy or round, that click-clacking sound
Bold and cold, power feet
Toes peeping out, round walk-about
Vampy high-flying, cute low-sighing
Heads turning, instep burning
The one hour moment, disco dancy beat
Thong sexy, racy – colors gone crazy
Credit card maxing, Rodeo Drive trancing
Stiletto, heart racing, long-leg chasing
A night to turn up the heat.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
“First this: God created the Heavens and Earth – all you see, all you don’t see,” (Genesis 1:1, The Message Bible, Eugene H. Peterson, italics mine). When I think of the creation week, I automatically think of the obvious – light/dark, sun/moon, animals/man, but God created a whole system of life, a system that often works in the invisible. As time has marched on we’ve discovered some of God’s invisible world: germs, bacteria, molecules and atoms, electromagnetic waves, light, wind . . . We’ve all felt and seen the power of this invisible force. Wind can be harnessed for our good but can also bring wreckage and havoc. Wind can be terrifying.
My mom fell today. This was the third fall in a year and they’ve all brought difficulties that she hasn’t had to suffer before. The first fall was from a ladder at work, causing neck, back and foot pain. The second was a small, tripping fall in a restaurant that wrenched the same foot, making her work in retail excruciating. She’s gone the rounds of doctors and physical therapy, did her exercises and taken her meds, okay, taken some of her meds. Who wants to be doped up all of the time? But today she fell in the parking lot on the way to work. Three days into spring and we get a big snowstorm. Great. I can picture her getting out of her car, clinging to it for as long as possible and then taking a few tentative steps onto the ice. She prayed, she always prays, but bam, she falls on her back hitting her right side, her knee swells up in two places, her whole body quickly grows stiff and painful. “I’m a little stoved up,” she tells me on the phone. “Did you go home and rest?” I demand. “No, no, they needed me.” She still works her shift.
I’m mad about this. Where is her protection? I don’t know a better woman, a better Christian. I can’t blame it on some weakness, except the obvious weakness of growing older; I can’t blame it on some besetting sin. She depends on God for everything in her life. I can blame it on the devil, and I do, but that doesn’t seem to be helping much.
As I’m praying for her today, praying for a miracle again, I start to think about gravity, about the unseen that God has created, and I wonder, “God, couldn’t you lighten the gravity in her small space in the universe for little while? Just enough so that when she walks she feels like she’s floating. You know, take away the external pressure bearing down on her so her body can heal?” Seems a little crazy, but that got me thinking about miracles.
Maybe that’s what miracles are. Maybe miracles are moments when God suspends His natural laws to right some wrong, correct a misstep, bridge a gap between the seen and the unseen. Jesus controlled the wind to safeguard his disciples and prove He was the Son of God. Doesn’t that prove that He’s not opposed to superseding His own natural laws if He wants to? Maybe, just maybe there are new ways to pray for miracles, ways we can barely get our minds around.
The Bible says His grace is sufficient, but what does that mean, really? What does grace look like? What does it feel like? People say all the time that God will give you grace, trust in God’s grace or pray for grace. Which brings to my mind a gritting of the teeth and waiting it out. The Webster’s dictionary says that grace is, “divine love and protection given to man by God.” That sounds good, doesn’t it? But I like some of the other definitions too, “good will, favor . . . a temporary exemption, as from paying a debt, a reprieve.” I like that one. How about, “seemingly effortless beauty, ease, and charm of movement, form, or proportion.” Wow, that sounds a lot like life without gravity.
So Lord, I pray for grace for my mother. Won’t you give her a reprieve . . . a temporary exemption from the laws of gravity? Won’t you put effortless beauty and ease back into her steps? Won’t you proportion her body to be in perfect alignment? Like the twelve she is a disciple, one of Your chosen daughters, so I humbly ask that you protect her from gravity. Lord, won’t You keep her from falling down?
Sunday, February 19, 2006
Welcome to my blog!
As a writer, I'm sure my blog will have lots of prose, poetry and fiction on it, but I hope to introduce lots of topics about the Christian faith and life in general. I'd love to hear your stories too! Especially from other p.k.'s but all are welcome. Thanks for visiting!