Herein You Shall Find..

I’ve always loved poetry. I love reading it and there have been times in my life when I loved writing it. As a young man, I regularly submitted poems to publishers and regularly went through the disappointment of the long forgotten ritual of receiving rejection slips. One such note described my work as an ‘an eclectic mix of style, form and subject’. I am not at all sure that it was intended as a compliment. As feedback goes, it was undoubtedly accurate and in view of the quality of the pieces, extraordinarily generous. 

On one occasion, I made a small handwritten booklet of my own poems, purely for my own use, which was called ‘Herein You Shall Find, the Meditations of a Fool’. At the time, I’m sure that I thought this was a rather avant garde sort of title, and doubtless entertained the fantasy that this would somehow lead to literary fame and fortune. It didn’t (or it certainly hasn’t yet) but the notes therein were certainly an eclectic mix of style, form and subject. 

As someone once said, ‘The past is a different country. They do things differently there.’ 1 In these times in which life is both simpler yet far, far more complex, the incredible opportunities offered by the internet and social media mean that one can step with relative ease around the editorial demands and constraints of the publishing house. You and I can scatter our rambling thoughts upon an unsuspecting public with relative ease. This blog is, in a sense, my own exercise of that privilege.

As I write this, there is a sense in which I wonder if that feedback from a ‘different country’ so many years ago has in some way come to define my entire life. I certainly make no apology for the fact that it adequately describes the content of The Cross Blog. I have been blogging at The Cross Blog and elsewhere for many years and much of the content, like my poetry, has certainly been rambling and readily forgettable. Whilst I am marginally more organised than I used to be, I still tend to blog as I think or feel led. Whilst there are exceptions, few of my posts are explicitly linked. I rarely follow an ongoing theme, except that almost everything I write is intended to be in some form an expression of my faith as a follower of Jesus. My purpose is always to encourage. Never to offend. 

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Thank you for visiting the Cross Blog.

Richard Jackson is the former Executive Director of Family Foundations Trust, a Christian charity in South East England. He is exploring what it might mean to live as a contemplative evangelical.

1 L.P.Hartley, ‘The Go Between’

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