Monday, August 30, 2010

In the Beginning.

All this happened, more or less.

Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself.

You don't know about me, without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, but that ain't no matter.

My dear sir, Your letter only reached me a few days ago. I want to thank you for its great and kind confidence. I can hardly do more.

Mason City. To get there you follow Highway 58, going northeast out of the city, and it is a good highway and new.

You better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy.

In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters.

As you can see, far greater writers than I can ever hope to be have started far greater works of literature than this could ever hope to be, and yet I don't know how to begin. So let me start by saying:

Shalom. Welcome. I'm Gracie, and this is my blog, "A Common Grace."

Why "A Common Grace"? Here is a short list of reasons:

1) Being a 20-something is not that unusual. Everyone goes through it. It's "common." And I'm going to document a portion of my experience here because, let's face it, I feel like I'm journeying backwards into adulthood with my eyes closed. And I want you to be a part of it.

2) I'm also beginning an adventure at Yale Divinity School, pursuing a Master of Divinity, thus my leap of faith into adulthood will include an attempt to tease out the significance of the Protestant and Calvinistic notion of common grace (along with a myriad of other theological, sociological, political, historical, etc. etc. etc.) concepts. These struggles will, invariably, find their way onto this blog.

3) I'm a cradle Episcopalian and believe, as our cherished Book of Common Prayer indicates, that something can be learned from existing "in common." Like how common prayer requires not only community, but also that which is public, I believe the discovery of grac(i)e, will require community, and cannot only exist inside me but outside me as well. I'm taking the words of Parker Palmer (who is really just recycling an old Quaker adage) to heart: "Let your life speak." Aye, Aye- Cap'n. Let's see what I (we) hear.

4) If you recognized any of the quotes above, you have someone to thank. Whether it's an English teacher, a Sunday school teacher, a librarian, a parent, a grandmother or an uncle who writes you notes in calligraphy on parchment paper, someone showed you something very special. For each one of those works I referenced above, I gleaned a little bit of Truth and was irrevocably changed for the better. So what is also common about this blog, and my musings that lie therein, is also the communal influence of my teachers, be they friend, family member, or employed professional, whomever they are and may have been. I am for them, and they are for me. Always.

In closing, you must forgive me a few things: my spelling- it's atrocious. My grammar- it isn't always on par. My verbosity- given that this isn't something I'm turning in for a grade, I refuse to say in five words what I can say in fifteen. My romanticism and sentimentality- they are, invariably, a corrupting lens I refuse to take away. My proclivities- I love Tar Heel basketball. I love my family. I love my ideals. I also love that I tend towards a "Dodo" way of life in that I often forget my cell phone, lose my keys in the house, and get lost frequently. I'm more than happy to take the gentle ribbing that comes with this, but I don't intend to change and I will continue to, as they say, let my freak flag fly here on the web. Enjoy.

If you find any of these things distasteful, no one is forcing you to stare at the screen. Go read one of those books referenced above instead.

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