So I got word from Chip MacGregor my agent. We're waiting. He believes the economy has really slowed down the publishing industry, too. That does make sense. Jennifer works at Barnes and Noble and next week her hours are reduced rather than expanded. Chip has been in contact with the publishers and assured me, "people are reading your work."
So I continue to wait.
Quite appropo for the advent season I would say.
The endorsements I have received so far have really helped me during this time. They have helped create an anxious looking forward to seeing what is going to happen rather than a looking forward to see who is going to say no. I have a solid sense this is going to be published--I don't know if any of those looking at it now will be the one but I believe it is going to be published.
On the other hand, my hope is not without anxiety. I would like to have it published by any of the publishers looking at it now. I have attempted to pull off writing a rather provocative book but I have always hoped that it was not too provocative for mainstream Christians. Obviously some evangelicals would find it too unsettling. But I wanted to write something for those who see a fresh movement of God's Spirit occurring in the twenty-first century. Chip did express confidence, "I think it'll happen."
Extra close friendships between sexes open up deeper questions about sexuality and discipleship for Christians. Questions about intimacy, sexuality, and friendship deserve deeper reflection than pat answers from the past.
Although I may write about my other interests here, I try to give others a fresh peek into (as much as I can) my close friendships with the Jennifers because it is important (relatively speaking) for the world to see ongoing fidelity, freedom, and intimacy are possible within friendship and marriage. Questions of enabling, codependency, manipulation, jealousy, lust, adultery, beauty, delight, desire, goodness and fidelity are not once and for all settled just because Sheila wrote in 2006 here on this blog that she supports my friendships. Relational questions are addressed relationally--not with some static answers. I remember one blog reader saying how much they were inspired to think differently because of my transparency here about my closeness--closeness in marriage and friendship.
Intimacy is not a zero sum game nor it is static. The reality of the Trinity teaches us that. Intimacy is not a zero sum game between spouses and their cross-gender friends.
Freedom--authentic freedom, (that is, authentic inner and external movement, spontaneity, deliberation, expression, intentionality) within the relational context of fidelity--is an essential mark of peace, blessing, trust, and release in Christian love (Galatians 5). This is a great relational paradox within cross-gender friendship and marriage: freedom and fidelity. Is it possible for the hearts of men and women who are married to each other to welcome the presence of delight, love, goodness, beauty, and affection of another without compromising or undermining a passionate, healthy fidelity within marriage? Any possible static (or theoretical) answer to this question is utterly insufficient--especially when there is so much fear and doubt about intimacy.
So, this Christmas, while I am waiting word for this book, I have much to look forward to. Both Jennifers are a part of the Christmas conversation at the Brennan household with delight and freedom. Even though Jennifer Roach lives 2,000 miles away, Sheila is prodding me to get moving past my procrastination when it comes to shopping for gifts we have to send to Seattle ( sorry, Jen--but its not like you're the only one--I've yet to buy gifts for anyone yet)--"Do you think its time yet?" This weekend.
Meanwhile, I'm looking forward to connect with Jennifer Ould a couple of times before Christmas doing some fun things together and she'll be over Christmas day having dinner with us.