Inspiration from the Novelist Who Posed with Typewriters
February 6, 2012
In a Wikipedia entry under ‘Frances Parkinson Keyes biography’ is found a finely preserved picture of the late Mrs. Keyes sitting at a typewriter. There is no paper in the typewriter and there is no paper to be seen anywhere in the room. Obviously the picture is posed, and because Keyes was the author of over fifty books no one would think twice about the lack of paper in the photo.
Over forty years ago I befriended Mrs. Keyes’ personal secretary who invited me to the author’s restored home in the French Quarter of New Orleans only a few years before Mrs. Keyes died. The house was once the residence of General Pierre Toutant Gustave Beauregard who was also an inventor and a writer as well as a prominent general in the army of the Confederate States of America.
Marge Lilibridge was slightly older than me, but it was impossible not to be intrigued with the facets of the personal tour she gave me of the recently restored mansion on Chartres Street just across the street from the famed Ursuline Convent. In the rear slave quarters, she showed me stacks of black and white composition books and allowed me to peruse through them. They were the handwritten manuscripts that Mrs. Keyes used to pencil almost every one of her books, with nearly perfect penmanship. She did not use a typewriter.
It seemed unimaginable to me that she could sit and write enough to fill even one composition book, but here were stacks of them lined up against the wall. I also could not imagine that one day sitting amidst several published and unpublished manuscripts of my own that I would be sending articles to the entire world almost on a weekly basis from an electronic gadget called a computer. It is something I could not see and it is a vision I surely would have rejected, never coddled.
Keyes was born in Charlottesville, Virginia as were my mother’s parents, but there were no other connections or parallels between us except for one. Something, or in my case, someone, had driven us both to write down what we thought our readers, if not the entire world should read and ponder for themselves.
I always just wrote when I felt like it, and never entertained any notions about being a writer. Almost by accident something I wrote was picked up in 1979 by Guideposts Magazine and later by Catholic Digest. Other magazines and publications ran some of the short pieces I wrote, but it always came as a surprise when I got published because, I didn’t care whether they took my material, or used it to light the fireplace.
Years later I had a book or two published and began blogging on the internet, but just to answer some remark that seemed to beg me to answer. Today blogs are tapering down just a bit, but who will miss the endless, aimless and feckless ranting of those who seem to get some strange relief from spewing out what is on the top of their heads. Don’t worry, I also know, that some of the most well written and highly intelligent remarks on any subject can be found interspersed throughout the great sea of internet rambling we call the blogs. I am a little too old to be endlessly fussing around the breakers of that vast ocean looking for a fish.
We have all seen blogs, videos and internet radio rise and almost fall, but solid, informative and well written articles don’t seem to have budged a single bit. They are the deep currents, the tide or the persistent breaking waves near the shore. They are the way most of us ingest, digest and assimilate the actual events of the day in that hopefully quiet place we call our brains where we analyze, categorize, hate or sympathize with what we read.
Each writer seems to have strong reasons to write or a pathology that is all their own and I long ago gave up trying to figure out what that may be. I am sure of my own reason for writing but it took several years to be sure of that. My writing is to convey a message that I’m sure I have derived from inspiration. If you understand that you need no further explanation; if you do not, I have no explanation you could possibly comprehend.
After being led to the Lord by a neighbor who just happens to share Mrs. Keyes maiden name of Frances Wheeler (coincidence I presume) I began to receive dreams and dream visions sometimes every single night of the week. As the years rolled by it became apparent that there were two separate kinds of dreams I was seeing.
The daily kinds of visions were often about nothing in particular. They were events that, had do with, me or those around me, and although sometimes the events seemed almost impossible, they all happened just as I saw them. It took me several years to learn that the one hundred percent accuracy rate of fulfillment with the minor visions were preparation for the larger visions having to do with this nation or the world at large. God was clearly teaching me that regardless of the content of the vision, the size or length of the vision or its details it could be trusted.
The greatest vision of them all was a picture of Christ’s return to the earth at a time when practically everyone on the planet had pretty much given up faith in God, and religion was also under direct attack and outlawed in many places. Other messages just as clear had to do with America’s economy collapsing and a fairly long period of hard times for the nation.
I have striven endlessly but never more than now as we face an election period where almost every candidate is running on the ‘fix the economy’ platform, to warn that America is not just a big business to be yanked out of a hole or a big trading center like Wall Street, where fortunes are won and lost only by those with amazing financial and business acumen. We are a nation of people whose various places in life are not simply defined by our net worth and our security. Our relationship to God is exponentially more important than our economy, but few are getting the message.
I have no doubt, that if we decide to elect a man who has all the business savvy in the world; my vision will not be thwarted or vacated. Oddly I know that all wisdom gained from hindsight is cheap and I can see that by the time anyone realizes that I was right it will be far too late to make much of a difference. My only consolation in all of this is that God also indicated to me that some, albeit not many, will decide to redeem what is left of their lives and call upon the name of the Lord.
These visions are like writing to me; I would prefer to be doing something else. I have always dreamed of becoming a gold miner or an artist and there was a time I just wanted to be a humble teacher to help kids prepare for their future. Some people tell me that I have already found the gold in the gospel and have been granted the art with which to sculpt and paint it for others to behold. They tell me to write to explain what I have seen to prepare others for what is coming because they are all children who don’t have a clue about what is ahead. In my best moments I know they are right.
Under the guiding hand of God I always take courage and re-apply myself to the work regardless of the indifference or the resistance. The only remaining sorrow is the picture that I see emerging just by studying the reactions to my work garnered from my own website and what I can see of my articles on other websites.
My site is approaching a quarter of a million reads, but the articles read on other sites have been read many times more. It seems safe to say that about ten million people have read my articles worldwide, but mostly readers are from the states.
It is the statistics that tell me the most and that is where I am left in a state of amazement about what Americans think is important. I wrote a piece about UFOs once that got about 20,000 reads in a matter of days while my latest article about the scourge of abortion in the U.S. took one site about three days to get more than ten people to read it.
I have concluded that this happens for two reasons. The first is that we are happily diverted by anything that does not require any personal assessment of our own behavior or would make us feel culpable for anything at all. The determination that truth is purely subjective and relative has been ingrained into this entire generation and now only tech pursuits, celebrity fluff and personal gain are worthy of anyone’s full attention.
The second reason is far more spiritual and will hardly be accepted by the crowd. The Bible clearly says that one of the chief works of God’s Holy Spirit throughout time will be cranked up near the end of time as we know it. In theological circles we call that the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. It is best defined in the following verse in which Jesus tells his followers that when he goes away another will come from God to help them and to provoke others who have not yet believed, to see that their chosen path is wrong.
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” (Jn 16: 7, 8)
Why won’t Americans look hard at the abortion issue? Is it because it’s the law of the land, is it because scientists who make swelling authoritative statements about everything from earth to the distant stars have indicated that they don’t know exactly when life begins in a woman’s womb? Or is it because we are really the champions of women’s rights and we want them to have the chance to succeed as well as our sons, as President Obama recently exclaimed to the world?
Let’s come down from this lofty and exalted place where popular illusion is creating the delusion that is currently in profusion. In simpler terms let’s cut the baloney, because the Spirit of God is always pressing the human spirit to make us see that the slaughter of unborn humans is a crime of the highest kind, a crime against all humanity. That is what we call conviction and that is why some articles are gobbled up like candy and others are avoided like the plague. There is no statistical anomaly at play in the equation, it is a human equation, and it will have its final product.
The disciple that hung so close to Christ got the nickname of ‘John the Beloved’ because he was so loving and dedicated to Jesus. It is from this amazing disciple that we learn that conviction unheeded leads to condemnation. Oddly, the result, or the product of the equation is also based on how much someone or something is loved. Look at it if you dare.
“And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.” (Jn 3: 19, 20)
Michael Bresciani is the publisher of American Prophet.org since 2005. The website features the articles and reports of Rev Bresciani along with some of America’s best writers and journalists, news and reviews that have earned the site the title of "The Website for Insight." Millions have read his timely reports and articles in online journals and print publications across the nation and the globe. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook!
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