Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Way That God Made Me - Meyer

For a variety of reasons, I have struggled all my life with a poor self image. In more recent years, I have come to accept my teeth, and hair, and body size and shape. Most days, I can think and feel beyond the flaws, and interact confidently with people around me. Most days, I feel “comfortable in my own skin.”

Not yesterday…

Yesterday, I wished that God would give me darker skin and jet black hair, if even for just a few hours.

I was at the Norway House Cree Nation 2008 Staff Conference. Out of about 200 people attending the conference, there were maybe one, or perhaps two, white people; the rest were First Nations.

I was invited to have a book table there.

The books that I was selling were written about, and for, First Nations people. The setting of the series is Rabbit Lake, a fictional First Nations community but also includes a tourist camp nearby. The main character in one of my books is Colin Hill, who is Ojibway, although there are many cultural backgrounds represented throughout the series. The stories touch on issues that are common to many cultures (drug and alcohol addiction, and child sexual abuse) but also refer to specific First Nations issues such as Indian Residential School.

The reason why I write in this setting, with these characters, and about these issues, could also quite fairly be described as “the way God made me.” The family that He placed me into, the setting where I grew up, and the issues I encountered as a child, all combined to produce in me this internal story that clamors to be told. I write the things I feel passionate about. I write the things that I can’t not write about.

Sometimes, it’s awkward being a Caucasian of uncertain ancestry writing books for, and about, First Nations people.

But I’ve stopped (almost!) trying to figure out why God made me the way I am. He did it. I trust Him. ‘Nuf said.

Dorene Meyer, author of Deep Waters

“Set in the fictional Ojibway community of Rabbit Lake, Deep Waters will transport you into Canada’s far north for a compelling story of enduring love and sustaining faith.”


Linda Wegner said...

What a great piece, Dorene. Oh, how I identify!

Just for interest, lately I've had the privilege of doing some contract work with local First Nation people and am blessed to have the opportunity to get to know our neighbours better.

Dorene Meyer said...


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