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The Season of Orange - persimmons, pumpkins, citrus and crisp autumn leaves


Welcome to those who have recently joined my newsletter and welcome to the beginning of winter in New Zealand.


The weather I've been dreading has arrived in full gale force. Perched on a hill overlooking the ocean, rain rattles the windows and wind whips autumn leaves from the trees. The mandarins cling to their bouncing branches, bright orange globes against a garden of green.


I can't complain - we have had six months of sunshine. The ground is thirsty for rain. And in this nook of New Zealand the weather, even in winter, remains mild.



In the kitchen I'm crunching my way through antioxidant packed persimmons and making lots of harissa spiced chickpea and pumpkin soup. It's certainly an orange time of year!


On the writing side, I was thrilled to be part of the Christina Dillon's Easter Giveaway. Congratulations to Nora and Bea who both won a free copy of The Silk Merchant of Sychar.


My third novel is coming along slowly! I can name all sorts of distractions - gardening, cooking, cleaning, praying, exercising, meetings, Diploma of Theology assignments, coffee with my husband but the real reason is lack of prioritising and self discipline.


I started off this story with one main protagonist, Demas - a diver for a boutique murex dye factory on Israel's Mediterranean coast. But within a few pages a woman of questionable morals turned up and insisted on being part of the story. So I have two characters to draw together in their quest for the truth.


I would love to be able to plot my novels the way I plan university assignments or write nutrition articles - nice and ordered. But no. I have to pray a lot and then open up the computer and start writing. Often one idea will come to me for the scene I'm about to write: it's raining or there's a camel dying in the desert or there's a woman wading into the waves in the dark.


Writing this way is exciting - meaning fun and scary! It also keeps God at the front of my mind. Unlike writing assignments or nutrition, I cannot write a novel in my own strength. I don't have ideas pouring into my mind. I don't have a need to write every day. I write because I know there is a story that God wants me to write and that he will help me to write it - even if it takes a while.


Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.

If you are is a similar situation - doing something that's out of your comfort zone, something that seems too huge, something that doesn't make logical sense and yet you feel God wants you to do it, keep persevering and keep praying. You never know what God has in store!

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