The picture inside the picture

How to Draw a Picture (Part 9)
(Excerpt from Duma Key by Stephen King)

Look for the picture inside the picture. It’s not always easy to see, but it’s always there. And if you miss it, you can miss the world.

This is the ninth installment of my adventure into serious writing. It’s still not something that I’m completely comfortable with. As a matter of fact, I could never imagine it was anything I would even consider. But to quote one of my favorite lines from the book this series is based upon,

“God always punishes us for the things we can’t imagine.”

And while the biblical implications of that statement are at odds with what I believe to be the Truth, still – it makes me pause.

When I started this silly little blog in April of 2008, it never dawned on me that I would be so inspired by so many talented, amazing people. Among those near the top of that list would be Jeanne Damoff.

I described Jeanne a couple of weeks ago in the following tweet: “Follow @jeannedamoff. She’s like me, only classy.”

Okay, so maybe she’s not so much like me. She holds degrees in social work, sociology, English, and secondary education. Wife to George, mother to Jacob, Grace and Luke. From her bio: “Jeanne is a published writer, a professional choreographer, a musician, and a speaker. She loves to laugh and gives points to anyone who makes her laugh out loud. These points are very valuable. Everyone should strive to earn them, starting now.” (Apparently, I have earned a few points along the road, because she has graciously agreed to guest post for me very soon.) As impressed as I was with her writing thus far, I was completely unprepared for the book she sent me.

When I read the quote from Duma Key that inspires these posts, I knew I had to share a bit of her story. So many of us often miss the picture inside the picture, but if we look for it, there is astounding beauty to be found. Jacob Damoff is a shining example of such beauty. Again, here’s Jeanne in her own words:

In May 1996, the world ended. We traded “Happily Ever After” for brokenness and sorrow. My book, Parting the Waters: Finding Beauty in Brokenness , tells the story of Jacob’s drowning accident and our family’s subsequent journey through a valley of lost dreams and into a deeper understanding of God’s sovereignty. As our eyes adjusted to the shadows, the beauty of God’s plan came into focus. A pebble is dropped into a pond. Ripples are set in motion. Ever widening, they accomplish eternal purposes visible to those who choose to see.

I literally have a stack of books four feet high that are waiting patiently to be read. But once I picked up Jeanne’s book, I could not put it down. If you’ve ever struggled to understand why bad things happen to good people and can’t seem to find the silver lining in the clouds of life, I would highly recommend this book.

And you know I know a good book when I read one, right?

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