Thursday, June 19, 2008

A Slice of Heaven on Earth

Tuesday morning I left my home bright and early to trek north to Wisconsin to the setting of the story I am working on -- working title "Above All Else." I have set my story in this particular spot because the publisher I'm targeting had suggested the locale for one of their stories in the line they are releasing over the next couple years.

Little Hope, Wisconsin is no more than four corners three miles south of Waupaca. Starting out, I knew that the only thing of significance there was the Red Mill, an old grist mill that was built and put in operation in the 1850s. I knew that a family had purchased the property back in the late 60s and had refurbished the mill, and had added a covered bridge and a very small chapel. But I wasn't prepared for what I actually experienced upon arriving there -- the presence of God in such a remarkable way.

Everything about this precious spot glorifies God. God the Creator, God the Protector, God the Peace-giver, God the Shepherd. I wanted to stay there and go no further. Set next to the Crystal River, with birds singing in the pines overhead and trails to follow, you feel so close to God and so far from the busyness of life.

It was hard to tell the owner, Don, goodbye and be on my way, but I had other places to visit and see. And see I did. I'm ready to return to my WIP with renewed vigor. I could never have done the place justice without seeing it for myself.

My opening scene has the heroine recalling how her uncle calls Little Hope a slice of heaven on earth and she wonders how could a place with only a river, an old mill, and nothing but trees and meadows be that. She'll learn by the end of my story that it is just that because He is there. Of course, I know He is everywhere because He has promised to be with us until the ends of the earth. But I think He has a very special presence in places that are designed to give all glory to Him. And the Red Mill in Little Hope, WI is such a place.

It was a very special couple of days.


Deborah said...

you won a book over on my blog!! i sent you an email...did you get it?

Carole said...

I'm inspired just by reading your description of Little Hope, Pam. Similar places also have that effect on me. I look forward to your completed book.