SILENT RESOLVE AND THE GOD WHO LET ME DOWN (a 9/11 story)

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Life for Susan Van Volkenburgh was good. She was often told that God had placed a golden star upon her life. Then tragedy struck. On September 11, 2001 at 9:37 a.m., American Airlines Flight 77 plummeted into the Pentagon, taking the lives of 184 innocent people. One of them was Susan’s father, Stanley R. Hall. At that moment, everything changed for Susan. Everything she knew, everything she ever believed in, came crashing down. Her life began to unravel.

How could she face God in light of all that had happened? How could she ever trust Him again? Wasn’t God supposed to protect His own? Nothing made sense anymore.

This ten-year journey through the desert, through a land where God was silent, was a time of trial and of spiritual awakening. Could faith endure in the face of so great a loss, so large a betrayal?

Transcending the events of September 11, this spiritual odyssey moves through the mire of grief and loss, to question the very motives and promises of God. As Susan asks the tough questions, can the silent resolve of her own father speak to her from beyond the veil? Is there a place for faith when God has let you down?

Susan Van Volkenburgh’s debut book was chosen as a finalist in the 2011 Women of Faith writing contest. Her honest and revealing narrative portrays the anguish suffered when tragedy strikes, leaving the remnants of a life changed. With lyrical inflection, Susan takes the audience through the pain of grief and loss to a place of resolution.

Book Information:

Title: Silent Resolve and the God Who Let Me Down

Author: Susan Van Volkenburgh

Format: Perfect Bound

ISBN: 9781449743383

Publication Date: 5/17/2012

Pages: 137

Price: $13.95

Size: 6” x 9”

Available from: WestBow Press

To order: WestBow Press, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles

What’s In Your Lint Trap?

So, I was blowing my hair dry the other day, when I realized that I was not experiencing the full power that my hair dryer should be providing. Then it struck me, “Look at the lint trap.” I flipped my hair dryer over and saw that indeed, the lint trap was full of that white fuzzy stuff that appears out of nowhere. I ran my fingers over the webbed wire mesh that covers the inner workings of the hair dryer, pulling firmly until I removed as much lint as I could. Satisfied with the job well done, I resumed blowing my hair dry. Wow! What power! I was able to quickly finish the task, amazed at the power that emanated from my ordinary hair dryer. I had no idea that all this time I had access to so much power, if only I would have removed the lint sooner.

Then the thought crossed my mind, how much our lives are like this hair dryer. Here we have a great source of power and yet we do not utilize it. How many times in life we struggle without success because we just do not have the strength and fortitude to finish. We struggle under the weight of adversity, unable to carry the burden, for we are weak and do not know how to proceed.

Here we are as Christians, a favored people, promised to be empowered with the full strength of the Holy Spirit, yet we are unable to utilize that power. Why is that? Could it be that our lint trap is full? That the power of God’s Spirit is obstructed in our lives by the lint we carry with us? What is in your life that clogs your power? Is it busyness? Worry? Past trauma? Unforgiveness? Laziness? Striving for success? No matter what it is, if it is obstructing the air flow of your spiritual life, it needs to be removed so that the Spirit can imbue you with power on high. We have access to an unlimited source of power, a power that in its full force can create worlds out of nothingness, can conquer the destructive powers of sin and death. So look to your lint trap. Clean out what clogs your life and access the full power that is promised to you, the power of the Lord Most High. See what can be accomplished, what trials can be overcome, when your lint trap is unobstructed.

“Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.” ~ Luke 24:49

~ Susan

The Piddle Theory ~

So much to do, so little time…a common complaint among us all. I have always struggled to balance everything in my life, often with disappointment. Much of what I desired to accomplish had been put off until I had enough time to throw myself into it, which really means I accomplished nothing. That is, until I came up with this idea….

I call it my Piddle Theory.

Piddle (adj.) – very small. ex:  A piddle of time

Time

healingdream

In this harried world, it is hard to slow down, to change our mindset from the fast and furious to the slow and steady. But that is exactly what I did.

“Slow and steady wins the race.”

The Tortoise and the Hare – Aesop

The Tortoise and the Hare

To proceed with consistency and patience, though progress may be slow, will eventually produce more benefit than the hasty rush and careless furry to just get something done.

                Good things take time.

J. R. R. Tolkien spent fifteen years writing the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. As a professor at Oxford, he complained that his life often interfered with his writing. He did not have enough time to throw himself into the writing.

Tolkien

What if he had waited until he had time? We never would have been blessed with this great and inspired epic.

The Lord of the Rings

The Piddle Theory – to spend brief moments in time working toward a long term goal

Here are some examples of what I have accomplished utilizing the Piddle Theory.

Map of Middle Earth

Spending twenty to thirty minutes a day for six or seven months, I painted this mural of Middle Earth upon my office wall. If I had waited until I had enough time to work solidly on this project, it never would have been accomplished.

Trilogy of Kings: the Anointed One

Every morning for four years, I have spent one hour writing this novel. I have over 400 pages so far. Though I wish I had more time each day to work on it, I would never have had the opportunity to write if I had waited for the time.

Whatever it is that you are hoping to achieve, if you are waiting until you have time, you will never fulfill your goals. Do not wait to accomplish your ambitions or to experience your life. There will never be enough time to do everything you desire. Simply start doing, in small increments of time, and see what you can accomplish.

~ Susan