By Nancy Flinchbaugh
Every morning for 20 years now, I wake early to write. I call it my spiritual practice. I hope something you read in my books will guide you on your path, scatter some seeds of faith, hope and love, challenge you to unfold your own deep calling to live an abundant life, and find solutions for the challenging times in which we live.
During the adventure of writing my first novel, Revelation in the Cave (2012), my husband and I journeyed to Greece and Turkey. I wanted to revisit the early church, the Roman City State of Ephesus, and the Greek Island of Patmos. I like to call that book a cross between the Da Vinci Code and the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, shedding new light on the book of Revelation. The book introduced the MAMs, the Magnificent and Marvelous Book Club, an eclectic group of ladies who go on an archaeological dig in Turkey, digging up scrolls from the first century.
The seeds were planted for my second novel, Revelation at the Labyrinth, when I studied contemplative leadership with the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation. I created the Living Vine Labyrinth with friends at First Baptist Church and fell more and more in love with God’s creation of our Earth. I began to hear the cry of the Earth and heard a call to speak up. Other inspiration came as I participated with the local “Circles,” building bridges out of poverty and as I journeyed with a good friend struggling with ovarian cancer.
Instead of going to distant lands, I explored new worlds within my own community. I discovered our wonderful spiritual community of Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous and Ala-non. I signed up to be a mentor in a new Christian recovery/re-entry house for women called Safe Harbor. I became a certified labyrinth facilitator with Veriditas.org, facilitating labyrinth experiences at my church, at the Cancer Center, at the prison, and at Peace Camp. The labyrinth, once a place of pilgrimage in the middle ages, led me on a pilgrim journey as well, as my new novel about the Earth unfolded.
I invite you to read my second novel, Revelation at the Labyrinth (eLectio Publishing: 2017), and join the Magnificent and Marvelous Book Club (the MAMs) on an adventure as they launch a re-entry organic farm for women in recovery. The ancient pilgrim path of the labyrinth leads them all through personal healing and redemption, while finding hope for the planet as they encounter the turmoil of domestic violence, addiction, cancer, and climate change. Thomaseena, a victim of domestic violence, is erroneously sentenced to prison for killing her husband in self-defense. When she is released from prison, Thomaseena moves into the MAMs’ re-entry organic farm and begins to reconnect with the earth, seeking healing, recovery, and a new life path. Meanwhile, MAM Molly Mabra journeys with breast cancer. This lively story of love and transformation will keep you reading and thinking about possible ways to creatively build a future together.
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