Rejoice Always! (Excerpt from Champagne for the Soul)

Excerpt from Champagne for the Soul

A few years ago I began a ninety-day experiment in joy. I made up my mind that for the next ninety days I would be joyful in the Lord. Because this was an experiment, it allowed room for failure. If at times I wasn’t joyful, I wouldn’t despair or beat myself up. Rather I would gently, persistently return as best I could to my focus on joy.

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On Suffering

Excerpt from The Gospel According to Job

Once I met a man who, like Abraham, had moved his entire household halfway around the world on the strength of a vision from God.  When I asked him to tell me the story, he answered that there were three versions of that story, and which one did I want to hear?  First, there was the version of the story that he told to Christians.  Then there was the version he told to non-Christians.  Finally, there was the truth.

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Christopher Rainbow (Excerpt from The Furniture of Heaven)

Excerpt from The Furniture of Heaven

With Christopher Rainbow and me, right from the start it was one of those stormy romances: on again, off again, on again, off again. So when the news first came out about this new technique for merging two people into one, we simply made up our minds one night, he and I, to throw caution to the winds and give it a try. I guess it just seemed high time for us to take some kind of permanent, irreversible step, and so we thought–well, why not? Why not go all the way?

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Mamba (Excerpt from The Mystery of the Word)

Excerpt of a story from The Mystery of the Word (no longer in print, but still available from online bookstores)

It was a sunny day with a light breeze and the world could not have been more beautiful. I was picking wild flowers in the woods beside the airstrip in Chizela, a mission station in Zambia, when just as I reached for one last flower, a flame lily, all at once I felt something slam into the back of my leg. It was a real hit, like a gunshot, a powerful stinging blow that actually made me jump into the air. I spun around, caught just a glimpse of the familiar coffin-shaped head and those eyes like the tiniest black diamonds, and knew immediately I was as good as dead. There had been no warning whatsoever, yet instantly my astonishment gave way to an eerie sense of fatalism, as though everything leading up to this event had been meticulously and uncannily prepared. Is that, I wonder, what passes through everyone’s mind at the moment of death?

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