Notes from Jan

Painting A Way

April 8, 2016


Fell asleep laughing and hugging Jud’s pillow.

Garrison’s to blame.

After reading Buechner and thinking deeper thoughts than usual, I picked up Garrison Keillor’s Leaving Home and read,

“It has been a quiet week in Lake Wobegon.  It was warm and bright and the trees were in full color, magnificent, explosive, like permanent fireworks–reds and yellows, oranges, some so brilliant that Crayola never put them in crayons for fear the children would color outside the lines.”

Laughed out loud.

One holy laugh.

Had to thank God for Garrison and others gifted with words.


Sleep aids, sometimes.

Life enriching aids, mostly. Word artists, gifted at choosing words off a palette of possibilities,  paint with dabs of hope strokes of truth,  dashes of wit,  dots of wisdom,  splashes of perspective.

Words matter.   Much of my Bible reads like a diary with dates and notes in the margins. Written beside Psalm 63,  “Jud’s final chapel talk at Gordon. April 4, 2011. ” Three days earlier, MGH spoke,”You have three cancers.”   Now, it was Jud’s turn to speak.  He leaned on David’s words, then lived them each day  until his last.

“I lie awake thinking of you, meditating on you through the night.  I think how much you have helped me; I sing for joy in the shadow of your protecting wings.  I follow close behind you; your strong right hand holds me securely.” Psalm  63:6-8

When life pummels with words no one wants to hear, God uses a palette like no other and paints a way, dabbing hope, brushing  light into the corners where we cower, drawing us close, wrapping us with remembered words,” The Lord is my shepherd; I have everything I need.” (from Psalm 23)

God has a way with words.

What can I say?

Thank you.












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  • Reply Linda Moore April 8, 2016 at 11:09 am

    Dear Jan – you also have a way with words… And hugs… And encouragement… (I could go on-) thanks for speaking into my heart this morning!


  • Reply Margaret A. Hunt April 8, 2016 at 11:58 am

    You have a way with words that always touch me. I appreciate your thoughtfulness . Keep sharing.
    Love, Margaret

  • Reply Dale Lefever April 8, 2016 at 1:26 pm

    Thanks Jan,

    Without a creative God there would be no creative Jan.

    Blessings, Dale

  • Reply Jo Buccigrosso April 8, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    Indeed crafted by the Master and filtered through your poignant and amazing wordsmithing! So like you Mama, too:-)
    Thank you, Jan

  • Reply Harold Myra April 8, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    Jan, you are extraordinarily gifted with words! And in the same sense of those you quoted.

  • Reply Wendy Lane April 8, 2016 at 7:01 pm

    Whew, so good Jan.

    I recently heard a podcast of Paul Young who wrote The Shack. Steve heard him last year at a retreat with Tim Keller and John Piper and had told me I should listen. I hadn’t particularly loved the book, but I figured that was pretty good company to be speaking with, and I value my husbands opinion of course too! Paul’s testimony is powerful! Then I listened to his book on CD. He has a way with words. Extremely thought provoking, and, for me, encouraging. I’m in a very different place than I was when I initially read the book 🙂

    As others have commented here, you too have a really beautiful, powerful way with words dear Jan. Thank you for sharing them with us!! Love you!

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