Today I'm excited to promote a new book - Letters to Me, a collaboration of 19 contributors talking to their younger selves. As varied as their authors, the letters include advice as well as cheerleading, tips for noticing what's important and warnings to let things go. They deal with a broken heart, an unexpected pregnancy, disillusionment, losing a job, and the struggle for a positive self-image, to name a few. But there's no blaming here, just encouragement. As Brian McLaren says, "It's important to be a friend to yourself."

Many of the conversations invite introspection, bringing insight about some of the deeper issues which will drive decisions, noting where they've come from and how to move beyond them. I appreciated Christopher Smith's self-critique on impatience while promoting the work of shalom, and Margot Starbuck's gentle dismantling of traits that were helpful while she was shuttled from family to family, but that were stifling her soul as she grew.

Edited by Dan Schmidt (who, besides being a great writer just happens to be my husband), Letters to Me will certainly be of value to younger adults who are just starting out,  as they have the opportunity to listen in on these grace-filled conversations. But as a middle-ager, I found the book compelling as well. In hearing others speak with hindsight about their lives, I felt confirmed in my own choices, even those which may have seemed like they took me off-course. As Lyla Lindquist says at the end of her essay "As much as my life so far has looked like a crazy bunch of detours and switchbacks with no real aim in mind, where I am right now turns out to be the very place I want to be."

I'm convinced that Letters to Me has at least one story that will move you, and probably more. Whether it's for Christmas, a birthday or a graduation, this collection of letters will make a great gift. So click on the cover above to head to the Amazon site. (Kindle version also available.) Scroll down to read some of the other reviews posted there. And then grab yourself a copy or ten.
Marge Dickinson
1/8/2013 01:59:41 pm

Hi Sue, Love your blog, as well as Dan's and Aletheia's. I would like to start a blog myself, maybe with, but I notice yours do not seem tied to a larger organization. Any tips on how to get started? Thanks, Marge

1/10/2013 04:01:12 pm

Hi Marge,
Dan uses wordpress and I use weebly. If you pay for your own domain name, then the sponsoring site does not show up on your blog. But I have other friends who use blogspot and are very happy with it. Feel free to email if you have any other questions.


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