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Excerpt: "When I was a kid, a free-flowing river meandered its way through my backyard. My family loved rivers. We always lived near one. Growing up in dark, drippy, soulful Oregon winters, I’d watch the death of January conquer, year after year, the once free-flowing and wild Willamette River. By mid-month, during the muffled silence of cold, a deep, bone-chilling freeze would halt every living thing upon the face of our backyard. The Willamette fell victim with the rest. The river looked dead—frozen dead.

But the frozen river wasn’t really dead. My old man would tell me that underneath that cold, dark, seemingly dead surface was a wild, powerful, primal flow that untrained eyes couldn’t imagine. You had to believe it was alive. Rushing waves lurked underneath the stillness of death, as powerful as ever. Dad knew it was there, below the surface. I believed it was there too."


Originally published as the introduction and chapter one of A Glorious Dark: Finding Hope in the Tension between Belief and Experience, by A.J. Swoboda, Baker Books, 2014.

Used by permission.

ISBN-13: 978-0801016967

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