"Broken Ground of the Soul" by Linda Compton, Book Review
From the depths of our darkest hour, if we are to heal, we must swim against the stream of bitterness, sorrow and of disappointment and open our hearts to healing. This novel, by Linda Compton, gives real life meaning to the process of forgiveness, of learning to move past the sadness and tragedy that enters into every life at one time or another.
Within these seventy-two pages of life-learned wisdom the author shares the experiences of loss and recovery from its devastation in a way that uplifts the soul. Pertinent even to the non-believer, the scriptures are useful to illustrate the everlasting power of our Creator and portray the ancient wisdom of those from the distant past who, like us, have experienced pain and suffering.
It has been said, "There are no Atheists in a hospital." When we encounter a tragedy, such as the loss of a loved one or learn of a friend who has an incurable disease, we often turn to our spiritual roots. This small epistle teaches us how to reconnect with our faith in a Supreme Being and to realize who is completely in charge, despite our dire circumstances.
Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards."— Kierkegaard
Ms. Compton speaks of social responsibility, of taking charge of our actions and for the consequences of them. She quotes Kierkegaard as she explains the principles that operate in the course of our lives. The principle of hindsight as twenty-twenty vision is clear in her words.
The author explains C.S. Lewis's views on the Psalms as a principle fallacy in our thoughts on judgement. She explains the difference in the way the Old Testament writers, specifically the Psalmists, viewed their feelings about God's judgement, which reveals an important distinction about vengeance. She identifies that the New Testament Christianity's version of judgement is a concept of punishment for our own wrong doings. The difference is that the ancient Jews see judgement as welcome retribution where the perpetrators will be held accountable for their actions.
Linda Compton describes her own experience with a tragic loss in such a way that it uplifts, rather than brings others down. She talks of the years she wasted embroiled in hatred and of the loss of her own joy in the wake of the spiteful actions of a remorseless criminal.
No one can truly understand the pain of another human as they experience the loss of a loved one. We want to relate and share our compassion but only those directly affected can truly know the depth of darkness and despair at that moment. The author explains that time does not heal as we are often told. She says, "But time does not heal; time passes, and it is love that heals."
She speaks of the path back to the land of the living; a journey to a place where one regains their sense of peace, of compassion and forgiveness. It is a long but rewarding path with long-term benefits. She explains the simple choices one must make on the road to recovery.
The author is eloquent in her application of ancient scripture, the Psalms, to explain the connection we all have to our Deity, to the Supreme Being, who answers our prayers in His own way and in His own time, to our best interests.
Be merciful to me O God...in the shadow of thy wings I will take refuge..."— Psalm 57: 1
She speaks of the healing properties realized in the study of nature, for example, the life cycle of the egg and the struggle of the unborn chick in entering the world. We are the egg, encapsulated in a hard outer core that we must peck at with determination in order to escape and be released into newness of life.
The author reminds her readers of the dichotomy of life in general: the bitter and the sweet, cold and hot; darkness and light; good and evil; how without the light, the darkness prevails and after the bitter, the sweetness is savored.
Cardinal in Spring
She brings to mind examples of the great philosophers like Jim Rohn who explained eloquently in his presentations that "We must all suffer from one of two pains; the pain of discipline or the pain of regret," and that it is our decision of which side we will choose. She quotes Carl Jung who testifies, "I am not what happened to me. I am what I choose to become."
She speaks of God as the great purifier of souls, who puts us through the fire of tribulation to test our metal and thereby we are "inextricably altered."
The time tested and proven techniques for self-enrichment are well established, yet, Linda brings a new level of understanding to their simplicity and value.
Linda writes about the regenerative effect one can experience when studying nature. She explains that it is only God in his infinite wisdom, who "brought into being whole galaxies; who made day and night; who filled living beings with breath" who can heal our broken hearts.
She knows firsthand that the healing may take years, that as long as we choose to dwell in darkness that the light is forsaken. She talks about the regenerative process and the renewal of our happiness as one that we choose, not one that is our destiny. We can choose to remain on the dark side or choose light.
Linda Compton shares with the reader many valuable lessons in overcoming adversity and reminds us that if we are alive, we will experience the shared failures of betrayal, hardship, critical illness and ultimately death. Through her words, we can understand that these inevitable outcomes are all part of life, the bigger picture being, that we are spirits residing in a temporal form. We are destined to overcome these challenges and setbacks and if we are lucky, to learn from the experience and grow.
This is a book that will uplift and put our thoughts into perspective, told by someone who speaks from the world of experience. Her story is woven within the pages and enables the reader to relate, feel compassion, and experience a renewal of spirit through mutual understanding.
Broken Ground of the Soul - The Healing Power of the Psalms is available on Amazon. Its author, Linda Compton, maintains an active presence on Facebook where her photos of nature and words of wisdom and positive encouragement are highly valued. She is an ordained clergy whose humanitarian efforts are recognized through a variety of foundations and awards of merit.
© 2017 Peg Cole