The Faces of the Divine in Doctor Who

Written in November-December 1996

When Doctor Who first aired in November of 1963, the character of the Doctor was very much different from what he later evolved into. He was irascible, gruff, imperious. When Barbara and Ian (two humans) bumbled into his TARDIS to spy on him, he kidnapped them and whisked them off to the past. I don't believe he ever apologized for doing it, and certainly the kidnapping set them all off on a series of adventures together. Pretty quickly they ceased to view themselves as his prisoners, but there's no doubt that the Doctor was in absolute control of everything and everybody in his TARDIS.

Now, I doubt Verity Lambert had God in mind when she put together this amazing character. What she wanted was something that could at one moment be familiar, even intimate, and in the next remote, powerful, mysterious. So she wasn't trying to depict God in the Doctor, but if you really stop to think about the Divine nature, you've got something that is at times familiar, intimate, comforting, and then at other times remote, powerful, mysterious--so non-human that the human heart fails in fear when it tries to consider this sovereign Being who created the soul with a mere breath and can extinguish it with the same.

It wasn't until I watched "An Unearthly Child" and "Caves of Fear" (the first Dr. Who adventure) that much of what I had read in C.S. Lewis and other writers really began to dawn on me. My view of God had always been quite anthropomorphic and rather egocentric. He was sort of just a bigger, better, immortal version of me, to my mind. But "Unearthly Child," combined with some tragedies in my life, planted the first seeds of the strangeness of God in my mind.

If--as with God--you start out with the premise that the original Doctor is good, then his actions are often quite enigmatic, especially when he never bothers to explain or justify some of the things that he does. And the fear in me, the viewer/participant, is born that he might hurt me and believe he ought to hurt me and needs to hurt me because it's the right thing to do-- even if I don't think it's good or the right thing to do.

Consider Barbara and Ian. They were narrow minded and pig headed. They secretly trailed Susan back to the TARDIS and sneaked inside, ready to call in the welfare services if they found her so-called grandfather to be the sort of person they did not approve of. So they were whisked off in the TARDIS, effectively prisoners of the Doctor until he should choose to bring them back home. Yet there is a rightness in what he did, even a mercy. Barbara and Ian somehow survived their adventures, even developed warm feelings for the Doctor, and they certainly were cured of their narrow mindedness. All the same, it seems a bit extreme, doesn't it?

So it is with God. I've got one agenda, and He's got another. I'm concerned about being kept safe when I commute weekends to my home in South Carolina. I want to stay employed as a contract technical writer. Every now and then I do checks on my motives for why I do the things I do. That's my agenda. Surely I must be as pig headed and narrow minded as Barbara and Ian. I just never think about it. And what about the sins in my life, heart, and conscience that I don't even know about? In God's agenda, there may have to be a lot of whisking me into danger, suffering, and troubles to break me out of my own mold. Does this frighten me? Yes, it certainly does.

Doctor Who, the earlier episodes, really brought this home to me. Oh, of course there are stories where he's silly, bumbling, downright ornery. I want to say again that I know that he was not created to represent God. There is merely a suggestion in the character of certain traits that we would equate with being divine or god-like.

One thing that amazes me about reader/viewer response to the Doctor is the complaints about his arrogance (thinking of first and third Doctors, here). I think that his temperament is consistent with somebody who is hundreds of years old. Of course he would view us as juvenile and would talk down to us at times. Or scold. And he would be unimpressed with our systematized structure of apportioning out greatness and fame. Surely after a few hundred years and the witnessing of countless wars, crimes, sacrifices, and achievements, a person such as he would be unimpressed with our conventions of defining social, even military, importance. I don't think his attitude is arrogant; I think it's justified. In applying this concrete example of attitude to the divine, I am shaken by how ignorant I must be of God's viewpoint. What could any of the things that I rate as important in this life possibly matter to God? Does it even occur to Him at all that a human being is president or a preacher--or a writer? Surely to God, Who sees every earthly convention, structure, contrivance pass away and be forgotten from the face of the very earth that spawned it, our achievements and discoveries just seem trivial: beneath consideration.

The things that matter to God would have to be things of consequence in His environment, not mine. So I'm left with things like love, self sacrifice, devotion, mercy, truth. And these, rightly enough, are things that the Doctor seems to value in his early depictions. The strongest image of the Doctor's love of eternal things would have to be his love for Jo, certainly one of his dearest companions, the only one he seemed to have grieved over losing (up to that point in the stories), and the one who had the least to offer him that was of any concrete use. She was not physically strong, not extraordinarily intelligent, not trained in science, not even all that sensible at times. But she whole heartedly loved him and twice gave up her life for him (though she was spared both times). The key to her relationship with him is that she increasingly devoted--not her abilities or her possessions--but her own self to him. Responsively, the Doctor increasingly moved from gruff or grudging acceptance of her to a devotion of his own. Instead of constantly telling her she cannot go with him (as he does in instances in "Terror of the Autons," "Claws of Axos," and "Colony in Space, " he starts to leave the decision up to her and eventually asks her to come along-even on dangerous journeys.

Sublimation and the Face of God in Dr. Who

I can't help it, and I did not even know it at first, but when I write about the Doctor, I am writing about my view of God. This is not to say that my DW stories should be read for Christian content; they are not doctrinal. They are certainly not doctrinally correct. No, they are simply honest about me--about what I was thinking about God when I wrote each of them. It has stunned me to go back and re-read earlier stories and realize what I was putting into them. It was an unconscious process.

My transfer of my own religious questions/experiences was first pointed out to me by a co-worker, and she introduced me to the term "sublimation," Freude's term for the use of the creative process as a means to transform [usually dark] events or circumstances into something meaningful/beautiful/coherent. Her explanation was that while some people take the bad things that happen to them and vent their frustrations, anger, unhappiness in destructive ways, others take these same events and transform bad or troubling things into expressive statements through the arts. Her admittedly amateur assessment of me was that I am very much a sublimator. I certainly agree with this. I have to translate nearly everything that happens to me into a story before I can safely store it in my memory and forget about it. If I don't translate it into a story, I'll dream about it in story form.

The next person who made me go back and re-evaluate my own fiction was one of my readers, but I forget which one. She pointed out to me that in both "Influx of the Array, " which started as a DW story, and "Every Dead Body I Meet," the Master was the most charming and interesting character.

I was troubled by this assessment, as it was correct, and I realized that at that time I was much more attracted to the Master than the Doctor.

I want to stay on this topic, but I have to offer some background information. I spent 1993 living with a family and home schooling their children. I can't blame them for everything that went wrong. I too blithely accepted them at face value and handed my life over to them--a thing I had no right to do since it is not my life to hand over. They were (and are) deeply troubled people, but I was thoroughly fooled by them. They definitely used some deception in their relationship with me, but I strongly believe that more hard-nosed common sense on my part would have saved me much grief from them.

It was a tough year, in which my most basic and fundamental tenets of my personal faith in God and in Jesus Christ were assaulted. These people, claiming to be Christians (indeed, the father was an elder at my own church) consistently charged me with misrepresenting their previous guarantees to me to care for me in return for my work with the children. They took apart my testimony of the conversion I had in Christ, and they took the position that I was still very troubled from my violent and unhappy childhood. I started to believe them. I'm sorry to say that I nearly denied my faith in Christ. I'm sorry to say this, and it shames me more deeply than any other sin in my life. Because, you see, Christ has saved me, and everything I said He did for me He really did. But I came to a point where I sincerely and deeply doubted it.

I was spared when the father was caught as an adulterer. He was removed from the eldership and a process of church discipline and restoration was started. But his character was revealed when it was discovered that he, was even then, lying to the elders. He was excommunicated. The family moved out of state, and I was free. Broke, sick, and alone. But free. By God's mercy, I was immediately hired by AT&T as a contractor.

I was unable to write fiction for a long time, and I found my own fan mail that I received from my existing books to be very troubling. After all, I had nearly denied Christ. I felt in no way capable of being some sort of role model to children. But I re-discovered Dr. Who, and there came a day when I decided it was better to write a Dr. Who story just to enjoy it myself than to not write at all. So I wrote "Influx of the Array." And I found-to my happiness-that I could write a coherent story again, a sign that I was recovering. Steve Leahy was the first person to write me congratulations on the story, and he will never know (unless he reads this) how much his offhand comments that the story was "not too bad," helped me.

Now when I look at "Influx," I see what I was saying about God. The Doctor (God) is good and has his set of people whom he loves: the Brig, Jo, Mike Yates, etc. But Diana (me) the person trapped in a strange house and suffering, he has no allegiance to. He is kind enough to her, but when she entreats him to take her away, to take her with him, he kindly but firmly refuses on the basis that she does not belong to him. So Diana teams up with the only other person who can take her away--the Master. I think I clearly saw this as self destructive and wrong, as depicted when the Master callously uses Diana as bait to try to kill the Doctor in an explosion. Yet Diana is so desperate that she still clings to the Master. This was my view of God in a time of great doubt. I can't deny that there is a lot of self justification in the story. If I am Diana, I am certainly presenting my case of going over to the "other side" as sympathetically as possible. In the story itself I never assigned blame to the Doctor for rejecting Diana's pleas. Instead I showed his rejection as simply inevitable. He could not take her with him because he had no legal right to do so. So I'm not sure if I was saying that God could not love me simply because I was too alien to Him, or if I was saying that he could not love me because He didn't want to. Neither assessment is correct, of course. God loved me all along through my difficulties and did answer my prayers and burst apart the structure of lies that this husband and wife had built. But at the time, all I saw was the suffering and unhappiness, my own doubt in God and my own guiltiness.

"Every Dead Body I Meet" brings a new person on the scene: Mags Hardbottle (me before I became a Christian). Like me before conversion, Mags smokes, fights, cusses, and is streetwise in a strategic but sort of innocent way. She's well versed at martial arts (I have studied MA all my life) and has a sort of cheery disrespect for the person of God (the Doctor) although in practice she tends to be on His side. Jo, disapproving of the casino, reliant on the Doctor in a strange and dangerous world, is also me--the Christian me: moral, respectful of God (the Doctor), reliant on him, powerless without him, and able to suffer a lot when she falls into the hands of evil people.

I'm not always sure of what I was sublimating in EDBIM. These stories are not a point by point allegeory of my life. I just recognized--in looking at them AFTER they were written--certain images that came directly from my spiritual struggles. I can see that Jo and Mags are both versions of me. And I see that the Master's rescue of Jo is that same thing that occurs in "Influx" between the Master and Diana, the juxtaposition of alliances. Again, while the Doctor (God) seems ineffective, the Master (perhaps Satan or perhaps any ungodly factor) effects the rescue of Jo from her torment and makes an alliance with her. The evil seems more effective and responsive than the Good.

Yet in "Every Dead Body I Meet," there is at least a resolution to this. The Doctor does show up, and we see that as soon as he is reunited to Jo, Mags is nearly forgotten by him. He accepts Jo, and so the reversed alliance ends. And yet--to my chagrin--Mags and the Master continue to be the more interesting set of characters.

To me, the most notable thing about EDBIM is the detail of Jo's suffering and her alone-ness. before she is rescued, her pain-induced vision of the Doctor is definitely my own longing for God when I thought He didn't love me and had not forgiven my sins or cleansed me from the violence and horror of things I had done to myself and to others before I became a Christian. These long nights of tormented dreams occurred in my life after I had begun to doubt God but before the lies that this husband and wife were living were made apparent. I felt as though I were their prisoner, for I had given everything up in reliance on their many promises to take care of me. My helplessness and longing are paralleled in the story:

Jo had an uncle once, who had died of cancer. He had talked about
unremitting pain. The doctors and nurses had talked
about unremitting pain. Now she herself understood it. She lay in a
timeless state, transfixed by the drill, unable to move,
unable to resist, unable to even scream after the first few minutes.

The oddest thing was to sleep during such pain and horror. But she
did sleep--short intervals that were frequent and filled
with dreams, until some particular stab of the pain woke her.


She had strange dreams--dreams that replayed the most vivid
of memories, so vivid that it stunned her to wake up from
them, stunned her to believe she was only dreaming. She saw
the Doctor and the Brigadier jousting each other with words
over coffee on a sunlit morning in the Brigadier's office, with the
sunlight pouring over them both through the long and
narrow window, turning the Doctor's sheaf of white hair into a sort
of halo. Mike Yates entered, saw her, instantly
brightened, and came over to say good morning.

She saw the chit of paper where they kept their tallies for chess
and checkers victories. It was hung crazily, taped
lopsidedly to a metal equipment locker in the Doctor's lab and work room.


The pain and the confused dream thrust her back to her own grim reality.
After another session of waking pain, she fell
back into the confused dreams. She dreamed she was in the
room where she was now imprisoned, and the door opened,
but instead of her two captors, it was the Doctor.

He leaned over her. "Oh, Jo, I'm so sorry," he said. "I'll help you.
It's all right." He ran his eyes along her, searching, until
he saw where her gown had been pulled back to reveal her left side.
"This is not difficult. Just a moment. It may hurt." He
lowered his head over her, and she felt afraid, wanted to protest,
but could not. She heard a sharp yelp of pain abruptly
cut off, and when he lifted his head, he was not the Doctor any
more, but the Master. He had a jet black rat in his teeth,
dead from a broken neck where he had bitten it. She took in her breath in fear.

I can't help but notice in this passage the Doctor's telltale halo, and also the idea of Jo missing and longing for a heavenly place-a place where it is morning, where there are smiles and a certain gentleness even under the bickering that goes on. I think I was definitely describing my own longing for the niche I once had felt so strongly a part of--Christian friends and loving kindness in Christian fellowship. The rest of the story though, is a confusion. The Doctor and the Master team up. The Master seduces Mags. What is going on? Again, I want to emphasize that none of the stories are a point by point allegory of my life, and I never consciously wrote them to express my current spiritual state. I think at some point the requirements of story kicked in, and I had to simply write the thing in order to finish it. I don't want to read too much into the stories, and it may be that everything that followed Episode Seven in EDBIM was merely what was necessary from a literary standpoint to end the story. I did wait for two months after episode Seven to write the rest of the story. I think this pause may have been an evidence that I had run out of what I was saying in the sublimation process.

Then, finally, I saw how to end the story so that I could set it up for "Four Jacks." The ideas for "Four Jacks" strongly appealed to me and I was eager to write it. But again, in retrospect, I find in it the images that show the state of my faith at the time as I continued to wrestle out the doubts and fears that haunted me.

Consciously, I designed it as a Dr. Who version of C.S. Lewis' That Hideous Strength, complete with some of the same ideas and characters from Belbury, but no disembodied talking heads hanging anywhere (as far as we could see). The Master is more clearly depicted as outwardly sauve and inviting and inwardly diabolical and cruel. I'm glad to see this, because it shows me that I was getting more clear on which side I was actually on and how the two sides are so radically different. But the Doctor (as God) fools Jo and has to do something very cruel to her in order to save her life. I think that in this aspect I was coming to terms with what happened to me in being allowed by God to enter into the devastating relationship with this husband and wife. But it troubles me that I depict Jo as having to forgive the Doctor. When people talk about having to forgive God, I think they are talking nonsense. He is righteous and good and does not need our forgiveness. I think it's haughty to even think in those terms.

All the same, the story was not consciously written to depict doctrinal correctness. Rather it can be used to see what I was actually thinking at the time-even the stuff I do not want to admit to. I think I had gotten to the point of saying that God has a right to do what He sees fit to do, and He's right and good to do it. But I think I was also saying that it hurts a lot, and there's something misleading about Him when He shows us His kindness and then strikes us with a blow that takes years to recover from. I don't think it's good or even accurate to think of God in these terms, but it's what I was thinking and wrestling through at the time. Certainly the Doctor's tenderness with Jo when he does what he does makes it clear to me that I at least had confidence in the motives and attitude of God.

Another point I see as probably a sublimated statement of faith is the death of Mags and the resurrection of Jo. Mags (the non-Christian me) comes back into the story when Jo is shot and unconscious. So essentially there are only Mags and the Doctor (God) onstage. Mags ventures out on her own and against the Doctor's wishes and gets killed. But I think it is instructive that it is the Doctor himself who vaproizes her body. In the storyline I was just thinking it would be better to have the Doctor do this to save her body from experimentation. But I think there is a sublimation side to it. Jo "dies" in blood, and Mags is active, and then Mags dies and Jo resurrects. The stream of events is overseen by the Doctor. I think I was indicating my willingness to forsake the old me, to recognize that she is dead, and to go on as the Christian, resurrected version of me.
Note: The stories, Every Dead Body I Meet and Four Jacks were rewritten as one single story called Book of Five Rings, which appears in Season Ten of my canon. I rewrote the ending regarding the death of Mags. She lives to come back another day, in Insiders.

Jon Pertwee died in May of 1996, and his death prompted me to pick up and finish a story I had started right after "Influx" but had never finished. "Hounds and Hares" is a story that I think has nothing to do with my view of God. It is almost purely what I claimed it to be--as far as I can see. I consciously depicted myself as Jennifer, right at the age I was when I first saw Dr. Who. Instinctively I made Sarah Jane Smith the companion. In retrospect, I think that I did this because I could not put additional companions into a story where Jo exists. Her relationship with the Doctor is so close that I couldn't squeeze another character in there. So I used Sarah instead.

The reason I feel certain that there's nothing unconsciously sublimated into the story is because I so consciously sublimated my own life into it. Bruce and Chucky really were my friends when I was that age, and they are both fairly true to form. I watched Dr. Who at that age, about a year or two before I converted to belief in the shed Blood of Christ for atonement as the sole means of salvation. So Jennifer is depicted as somewhat searching in her religious life, but more a moral reasoner than a person who has a relationship with God. She's pretty close to the way I was at that age. Yes we had bullies up the street, and yes I studied karate at the time. And I smoked.

Certain passages in the story depict my view of Dr. Who, of science fiction, and of writing, and it was almost obligatory to get a scene in there in which Jennifer is held in the arms of the Doctor. Every kid fan fiction writer in the world wanted to be safe in his arms, within the shelter of his cape, etc. Jennifer's lines about being different when she's down in the tunnels with the Doctor than she is in the world above serve as a commentary for many of us: how the creative world enables us to build a morality for the real world. Finally, in real life, my friend Chucky died. His death-and the resultant end of the three of us as a trio of friends-- is referenced when Jennifer and Bruce no longer have enough cards in the deck to make a group of "three three's," and they exclaim that the deck is ruined:

"Give me all your threes," Bruce said.

She sighed and handed him two threes. "The deck is shot," she said.
"There are cards missing. We lost some in the tunnels."

He looked ruefully at the two threes. "So we can't make a book out of
these," he said. "Not enough to make the threes complete, anyway."

"No, one is missing, and I'm sure it's gone forever." She shrugged
helplessly. "If one is lost, then the whole set
is ruined." "We'll just have to play something else," he said. "And why not?
Just because the threes aren't complete, we can still play something

She shrugged as an indication that she was too tired and dispirited
to argue.

"Poker," he announced.

"I wonder where Chucky is," she said

But all of this was conscious on my part. The goals of the story were to write a decent story that nonetheless was purely fanfiction in the way most of us wrote it when we started out. Any one of us could have been the main characters of either Jennifer or Bruce. It had the "real feel" of my own home town and my own life, yet it should have been translatable to anybody reading it. It covered the typical younger viewer's love and admiration for the Doctor, as well as some commentary on science fiction and creativity, as well as issues of right and wrong. The haunted house, the steam tunnels, the deserted hospital corridors were all the things that populate younger fiction. My greatest regret was that I could not squeeze a cemetary in there. Then it would have been perfect.

All the same, "Hounds and Hares" was very popular when I first posted it, one episode at a time, on alt.drwho.creative. I posted it twice consecutively, one episode each day, and on some days I received as many as ten e-mails about it. It remained popular after it went onto my web page. It was even suggested to me that a new series with Jennifer and Bruce might work out. But sadly, Jennifer and Bruce had to grow up and go their separate ways.

Even after the catharthis of "Hounds and Hares," the death of Jon Pertwee saddened me. I was aware that I was sublimating my grief when I wrote "Killer Bees," and by that time I was aware that the stories were serving as a method of expressing my continual struggle with faith in God. But I tried not to pay attention to it as I wrote. After all, the story is still the main thing. I enjoy creating my characters and don't like to sit and figure out who they really are or what they really mean. Clerk 42 was delightfully snide and rude--sort of the way we sometimes wish we could be if we were only brilliant and cold enough to get away with it. There is sometimes something awfully dumb in the way that Jo always asks questions, (rather than choosing to stop and think) and Clerk 42 was quite refreshing. He also gave me a chance to have Jo Grant slip her own halo a bit and call him a "pompous ass" while staying in character.

"Killer Bees" takes place after the Third Doctor's death. The first episode in its entirety is an exploration of how lonely Jo is. This made the episode drag a bit, and so I've twice gone in and cut it back. The enigmatic character in the train helps--a sort of marker to the reader hat there is more that is going on than first appears.

But Jo is essentially experiencing what I experienced at the the end of 1993-separation, grief, and loneliness. Not only have the important relationships in her life been severed by betrayal, she has lost that most important relationship-the Doctor (God). And Jo blames herself. She feels that she has deserted him, even as I felt and feared that I had denied and thus lost Christ.

There are two faces of God in "Killer Bees," the Doctor and the Clerk. The Doctor saves Jo in the first half, nurses her with great care, but then by default she is turned over to the care of the Clerk in the second half. After the kiss--which the Doctor does not comprehend as she comprehends it--the Doctor has very little to do with her directly. I think the storyline does reveal my view of a kind hearted God up to a certain point in my life, Who was replaced with a sterner, less sympathetic but still righteous version of Himself. And this less appealing version still performs the same roles, but it's a lot less comfortable for me. He must now be endured rather han enjoyed. Knowing Him has become a chore and a duty rather than a pleasure and the source of all wonder. It's better than thinking He doesn't exist, but it is still a sad--and naccurate--view of God.

My great encouragement about "Killer Bees" is that I keep changing it. I'll see one sentence or one paragraph and think, "You know, I ought to fix that right now." And next thing I know, I've rewritten six episodes. The result of this inability to let it lie has been the transformation of the Clerk. In the latest version, he is snide only until the last episode, and then we see a very loving side to him. He tells Jo that he has to sometimes hide his friendship, even from his friends. And in the last scene, he is very tender with her, expresses a longing for the closer friendship they once had, and comforts her regarding her own future. Again, I wrote this without thinking about what it was saying about my view of God. It just seemed to round out the ending better. But now in retrospect I think it is showing a more accurate view. I do see the stern face that let me "fall among thieves" and learn a hard lesson about the dangers of my own pride and self-confidence. But behind it is the loving kindness that was always there and that unerringly heard my prayers for deliverance from the enemies of my soul, and that did deliver me and provide for me.

The biggest change in my sublimation process came in "Blood Dimmed Tide," in which the Doctor does not represent God. It is clear to me that when I first wrote it, I was the Doctor in many of the scenes. Those chains and those fits of rage, grief, and confused religious belief are simply me as I was viewing myself in my doubt, guilt, and torment. There are a couple places where the Doctor could come to know God better but refuses, and I think this was my assessment of myself as well. I'm glad to see that I depict the rejection as a loss or flaw.

The face of God remains absent and enigmatic until the very end of the book. The first three quarters of it are purely about human struggle, human suffering, and human doubt. Similar to Hounds and Hares," I think there is less unconscious sublimation in "Blood-Dimmed Tide" because I came to it with some very definite ideas about what message I wanted to put into it. Apparently when I am aware of thematic structure and what I am sublimating (Hurricane Fran shows up all through the first half of the story), I do less of the unconscious stuff. Or perhaps it is harder for me to see.

There are godly people in my circle of friends who worry about all the time I spend writing Dr. Who stories. To them, the sight of a formerly award- winning Christian children's book writer dabbling in Dr. Who is a great loss. But somehow writing these stories helps me deal with this doubt. Somehow it helps me get over what happened. Somehow the sublimation process helps me process what happened and makes me more able to put it to rest. Maybe it makes me aware on other, literal levels of how I am viewing God and helps me address my errors or at least articulate them to people more well founded in the faith than I am. Certainly over the last few months I have done this.

If you are still reading this incredibly long article, perhaps you want to know where I am in my faith. Here's my answer. I think that I feared not believing in God more than I actually stopped believing in Him. There was one day when I went out to look at guns because I was convinced I was a stranger to grace and to God, but the Lord saw fit to make me miss the driveway of the gun store. I went up and down the road several times and could not find it. That was probably the worst moment, and that was before the husband and wife were so quickly overthrown (right before) and ultimately excommunicated.

My great challenge is to trust God. I think I believe that He is righteous, even good, but the eternal strangeness between man and God has made me very wary of Him. He'll do the right thing even if it hurts me, and I don't want Him to. I don't want to see myself for what I am any more. I don't want to be ripped with grief and remorse. To be perfectly honest, the price for being unselfish and loving is so very high that I dread having to pay it. Rebecca Anderson has offered me some wise and gentle counsel on this subject, and the godly, older people in my Bible study group also are ready to assist me. There really are godly and kind people in this world, and it is a delight and a comfort to be befriended by them. I think it must be the best comfort in the entire world to have the Christian friends that I have. So I try to be aware of the comforts that God offers to me every moment of every day. Mike's statement in "Killer Bees" is an echo of mine: "I confess what I did freely, I pray and ask God for forgiveness and guidance." It's a day-by-day thing--a regaining of ground from a hard fall. If you are a Christian, please pray for me. If you are not, stay tuned. As the Lord wills, I'll tell you more as time and space to add articles permits.

For info on sublimation and the creative process, check this URL:

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