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I came very late to reading. And I was led there by someone with whom I have been fascinated all my life: Louisa May Alcott.
I discovered Louisa through a children’s biography given to me by my aunt after we had visited Orchard House, a museum home dedicated to the Alcott family, and the home where Louisa wrote her classic, Little Women.
Sometimes we meet authors
our hearts to the core.
- Louisa and I shared interests in common (As a child I enjoyed writing and putting on plays just as Louisa did with her friends).
- We shared personality traits (she and I both struggled with bad tempers and depressive episodes, and we had a hard time fitting in–she was an out-and-out tomboy and I was one at heart).
- We shared dreams, desires and ambitions (we both wanted to create something splendid and share it with the world).
Companion on the journey
As a child, Louisa May Alcott became a role model I could look up to.
As a adult, I found her to be a fellow traveler in the difficult, confusing and often painful world of artistry (she as a writer, me as a singer and songwriter).
And as an older woman, I found Louisa to be my grief counselor after losing my mother to a long illness.
Who is your companion?
You may perhaps know of an author who speaks to you in the same deeply personal way. You know the joy of reading that author’s work and learning of that author’s life.
A new work on Louisa May Alcott
I was fortunate to be asked to compile a special devotional featuring the works of my favorite author, pairing together favorite passages from Little Women and other lesser known stories to familiar passages from the Bible with the idea of stimulating thought, prayer and meditation.
That book is called Louisa May Alcott: Illuminated by The Message.
Each passage focuses on a theme; I would like to share a one such passage with you, taken from Little Women:
Love Banishes Fear
They would have been still more amazed if they had seen what Beth did afterward. If you will believe me, she went and knocked at the study door, before she gave herself time to think; and when a gruff voice called out, “Come in!” she did go in, right up to Mr. Laurence, who looked quite taken aback, and held out her hand, saying, with only a small quaver in her voice, “I came to thank you, sir, for–.” But she didn’t finish, for he looked so friendly that she forgot her speech and, only remembering that he had lost the little girl he loved, she put both arms round his neck, and kissed him.
If the roof of the house had suddenly flown off, the old gentleman wouldn’t have been more astonished; but he liked it; oh, dear, yes! he liked it amazingly! and was so touched and pleased by that confiding little kiss, that all his crustiness vanished; and he just set her on his knee, and laid his wrinkled cheek against her rosy one, feeling as if he had got his own little granddaughter back again. Beth ceased to fear him from that moment, and sat there talking to him as cosily as if she had known him all her life; for love casts out fear, and gratitude can conquer pride.
LITTLE WOMEN, CHAPTER 6, BETH FINDS THE PALACE BEAUTIFUL
God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day — our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life — fear of death, fear of judgment — is one not yet fully formed in love. We, though, are going to love — love and be loved. First we were loved, now we love. He loved us first.
1 JOHN 4:17-19
Literary Portals to Prayer
Louisa May Alcott: Illuminated by The Message is part of a series called Literary Portals to Prayer and includes other classic authors: Herman Melville, William Shakespeare, Elizabeth Gaskill, Hans Christian Andersen and Charles Dickens, with more being added in the future.
Each volume comes in two sizes–the regular size which easily fits inside a purse, and the large print edition. They are published by ACTA Publications.
They are all on sale this week for half price. Visit the ACTA website and when placing your order, use the code “GimmePortals.”
If you enjoy classic literature plus the idea of finding spiritual nuggets in the writings, you will love this series.
Come along with your favorite author and take the plunge!
When you read Louisa May Alcott: Illuminated by The Message, could you please do me the favor of writing a short review on Amazon? It helps so much to get the word out to other interested readers. Here is where you can leave your review (you do not have to had bought the book from Amazon). And thank you so much!
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Read my other blog, Louisa May Alcott is My Passion