Tuesday, April 12, 2011

WAKE-UP CALL--By Elaine Stock

Today my guest blogger is Elaine Stock, whose Brooklyn accent is a delight to my ear. Elaine and I first met at the 2008 ACFW conference in Minneapolis. Thanks Elaine for being my guest today.

WAKE-UP CALL--By Elaine Stock

I write fiction. More specifically, I write fiction woven tightly with God’s love for all of us. Presently, though my newly acquired agents are about to market what I hope will be my debut novel. I’m also hoping my stories will reach the mainstream reader because I like to think of my stories as showing God’s love in the darkest of worlds, one that, sadly, everyone to some degree, can relate to.

And baby, is it ever getting darker and darker out there!

Presently, without the benefit of becoming an overnight literary sensation that brings in more cash than Nora Roberts and John Grisham combined (a girl can still dream, can’t she?), I work five days, and often forty plus hours per week as a customer rep in the food industry.

To say that 1) I meet all types of folks from saints to ├╝ber . . . uh, let’s say, interesting, to 2) and am constantly learning and re-learning things about life, and myself, is an understatement.

Then, there was the woman in the grocery store the other day that practically yelled at me because I apologized for mistakenly turning into an aisle that I didn’t mean to. I uttered a little prayer for her as I drove home later. We all need God’s mercy, grace, and love.

What is really troubling me about this troubling world is our ignorance of a wake-up call. Who truly knows when the Second Coming will happen; it is not for us to know. We must live each day to the fullest, trying at the very least (because we are all humans and all constantly fail, myself included) to love one another as God loves us.

I’m watching the media’s telling of the horrific earthquake/tsunami that turned the world upside down for Japan; a year ago it was Haiti. What those poor people have had to go through is heart wrenching.

Now with Japan’s pending nuclear disaster (or, has it already occurred and the government is failing to tell all?), other countries are beginning to take stock of what disaster-filled potential sits in their own backyard, ready to destroy.

And what was this little news release the other day about the two Koreas thinking about putting aside their venom for each other and to unite to protect their people against the probability of volcano eruptions? And on an everyday-more common level, the number of shouting matches taking place under the family-roof over the truly trivial?

I’m a human being. I fall way short of perfection. Daily I make mistakes; snap into thoughts and decisions I later regret. Maybe that’s why I believe in God. Maybe that’s why I’m trying to heed His commandment of DO NOT BE AFRAID because not only does He know of the wonderful joys ahead for His daughters and sons, but He gives us daily wake-up calls to keep on trying to turn on His light in the darkness.

Guest Author Bio:
Born and raised in Brooklyn, and then enjoying the more rural areas of upstate New York, Elaine Stock never expected that a college major in psychology and sociology would walk her through the see-saw industries of food service and the weight-loss business; co-ownership with her husband in piano restoration; and ten years in community leadership. All great fodder for creating fiction. With her first short story published on Christian Fiction Online Magazine, she is represented by Reclaim Management.

16 comments:

kellyannriley said...

Hi! Thanks for that reminder that although we've been having a lot of "wake-up calls" lately that we do not need to be afraid. And as writers we can send a message of hope and love through our stories. I'm looking forward to reading your books someday soon. Have a great day!

Kelly

Mary Beth Frezon said...

great to read you online, Elaine - when will you have your own blog? ;-)

It's true we have to keep ourselves strong in the face of all the events in the world. I try to do this by showing compassion to folks I meet each day. Sometimes it's easier than others but everyone needs a hand sometimes.

Diana Lesire Brandmeyer said...

It is difficult no to live in fear, but as Christians we know that fear is not of God. So we don't have to be afraid. Easier said than done. I enjoyed your post, Elaine.
Diana

Elaine Stock said...

Kelly--thanks for visiting Christine's blog. I always say that the only way I'm able to get out of bed in the morning and face the day is that I know I have one mighty hand to hold onto!

Elaine

Caroline Clemmons said...

Elaine, I have just begun reading a few inspirational romances, thanks to Marta Perry. Not that I know her, but I found her books and love them. I'll look forward to seeing your books in print.

I don't think the tsunami and other tragedies are wake up calls any more than tragedies in past eras were. But I agree with you that we don't have to be afraid because we know God is waatching over us, Christ is walking with us, and the Holy Spirit dwells within us. All we have to do each day is our best. Sometimes that's not very good for me, but God is not judging me for my shortcomings because Christ has already paid the price for them.

See you on the wild writers!

Elaine Stock said...

Caroline, so nice to "see" you (your pic). And thanks for dropping by. And you're right--there have been far too many wake up calls since the days of Adam & Eve.

I'm glad you're enjoying inspirational romances!

Elaine

Sara Goff said...

Thanks, Elaine. I will look at life's setbacks, whether big or small, as "wake-up calls" from now on. Aside from all the challenges and triumphs God is preparing us for in this life, He is ultimately preparing us for eternal life in Heaven.

Roberta C.M. DeCaprio/www.robertadecaprio.com said...

I am a fellow writer and published author, as well as a personal friend of Elaine Stock's. She is a joy to know, she writes page-turning novels, and she truly walks with God. I wish her the best in all her endeavors.

Roberta C.M. DeCaprio
www.robertadecaprio.com

Rebeca Seitz said...

Nice post, Elaine. And we're thrilled to have you at Reclaim!

Rebeca Seitz

Christine Lindsay said...

Thanks again Elaine for being my guest this week and sharing your thoughts. I've been a fan of yours while I've read some of your work. I look forward to the day when I will hold your debut novel in my hands, and many more after that. Hugs to you. Hope to see you at the ACFW conference this year.

Elaine Stock said...

Mary Beth--so nice to see you on Christine's blog. Hmmm. Me have my own blog, huh? You better run now. I have your number!

Imagine if *everyone* showered compassion on others like you do? You have a loving heart. And you also work retail--you brave woman.

Elaine

Elaine Stock said...

Diana, so nice to see you! It's a fascinating life we live: on one hand we possibly have a lot to fear, but on the other hand we have nothing to fear because of our Lord and Savior. Blind trust sure isn't easy, though. Thankfully we're given daily wake-up calls/opportunities to reach out to the Very Best and maybe help spread a little love & serenity around.

Am I really sounding like a '60s child? LOL.

Elaine

Elaine Stock said...

Sara, so nice of you to visit :) You know, when there's turmoil (and who hasn't had their fair share?) in one's life, you kind of get trapped in the everyday pain & anguish & just want to surface from the murk. Just breathe a little air.

There's a wonderful novel I read years ago, THERE MUST BE A PONY by James Kirkwood, Jr. (who also authored the Broadway hit A CHORUS LINE). In the briefest of synopsis, there's one scene where twin brothers are reacting to the pile of horse manure their psychiatrist dad (who was performing a study on them) piled in the middle of their bedroom. The 1st twin just moaned & groaned. The 2nd boy presented a huge smile, dumbfounding Dad. When he asks his 2nd son what's up, the boy said he was excited because he knew that somewhere under all that manure there had to be a pony!

That's me. Sometimes I groan & moan. Sometimes I try to be patient & wait to find my pony. When I look at my own ups and downs of just this past year, in hindsight, I'm really coming to realize & accept that it's *all* part of the life lessons that God wants me to learn. I admit, a lot of times I cry out "But why me, Lord?" I don't have answers, but I know He knows what he's doing.

Elaine

Elaine Stock said...

Roberta--howdy! Thanks for the visit. You're so sweet. If you're looking for an excellent new voice in Christian historical fiction, check out Christine Lindsay's soon-to-be-released novel. She tells all about it on this blog.

Elaine

Elaine Stock said...

Rebeca--wow! Thanks for the visit. Thanks for believing in me!

Elaine

Elaine Stock said...

Christine, thanks so much for having me on your blog and posting my 2-cents. This is an exciting time in your life, having your first novel soon out, and I'm thrilled that you're making time for little ol' me. Ever since you mentioned the other day that you're considering ACFW again this year I didn't stops smiling.

Elaine