Friday, August 20, 2010

The Passing of the Torch

(As of July of 2010 I have become the weekly inspirational columnist for 5 newspapers in central Ohio. The following article is my first column, giving homage to my dear friend and fellow writer, Faye Landrum. I hope to blog my columns a week or so after they are published. Enjoy!)

The Passing of the Torch

It is with both a heavy heart and a twinge of excitement that I write this first column. The usual author, Faye Landrum, has been a dear friend for almost 15 years. If you’ve been following her musings you know of her love for the Lord, and how she lives to serve Him. However, all things must pass, and Faye is now passing the writing torch on to me.

When I first met Faye at a monthly writer’s meeting she shared that she was approaching 70 years of age. I was immediately impressed because not only did she not look 70, but she did not act it. Most of us, as we age, become increasingly drawn to our comfort zone and are less excited about stepping out of our box. We hesitate to try new things and we don’t like to push ourselves; instead we look for the easy way out. But when Faye was faced with a challenge she would most often choose to embrace it, wanting to know the best and quickest way to deal with it so she could get on with life. And over the years, as I came to know, admire, and respect her, I witnessed almost every new decision being bathed in prayer.

Not only was Faye my dear friend, but she was also my mentor. The dictionary defines “mentor” as, 1) a wise and trusted counselor or teacher, and 2) an influential senior sponsor or supporter. Faye was both, and more. She was my spiritual mentor; I was her Timothy and she was my Paul (New Testament scriptures). And she was my writing mentor, too, regularly encouraging me to keep at my gift of writing; reminding me that there were a lot of hurting people in this world who needed to hear that God loves them and is there for them. Her dedication to the craft would remind me to only submit my best work, because “after all, we are writing for the Lord”.

Yes, I knew early on that I was sitting at the feet of a wise servant of the Lord. And seeking wisdom myself, I took advantage of every opportunity to learn from her. We traveled many states together, attending writer’s conferences and book signings. I regularly witnessed her humble demeanor in action, especially when strangers would tearfully share their grief over the recent loss of a loved one. Oftentimes Faye would freely give away copies of her “Moments of Comfort” book, or her “Final Mile” book, reminding the recipient to keep trusting the Lord and that He would get them through.
And if one of our many adventures should result in having to take a detour due to a wrong turn, she would usually laugh and remind me that, “getting lost by yourself is a nightmare; but getting lost with a friend is a journey!”

Now it is time for yet another journey, and sadly it is one that Faye and I must each travel alone. I am deeply honored to be filling her shoes in the “passing of the pen” as a columnist for the Post, although they are certainly big shoes to fill. I hope you don’t mind that I dedicated my first column to her; and yes, I promise to only submit my best work. After all, I am writing for the Lord.

Well done, good and faithful servant… the pleasure has been all mine.

1 comment:

Terra said...

I saw you on Facebook since we have mutual friends there, and came over to say hi. You are off to a grand start with your column and this tribute to your mentor.

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