The Victoria Advocate, A Different Perspective
I’m currently sitting on a victory so new, I’m hoping it will last. For the last several days, I’ve been working on visa applications. In April, my husband and I are flying to Brazil for our son’s wedding ceremony. He and his bride were married in a civil ceremony last August because they’d been told by their immigration lawyer it could hasten the visa process for his now-wife. It didn’t. Shoulder shrug here. Since everything is upside down and sideways these days, we’re delighted to attend their actual Brazilian wedding. It’s different from anything we’ve ever done before.
Hence, the visas. The e-Visa process has been quite challenging for this American. One would suppose it’s a simple matter of filling out forms, but nooooo. Uploading the pictures was particularly complicated.
However, it was the address details that threatened to derail my last nerve. No matter what I did, the form didn’t want to recognize our current home address. And because it wouldn’t recognize it, it wouldn’t save the info or allow me to continue. Our daughter-in-law said she could help, but the logistics don’t work in our favor. Thank God for a son who loves to figure things out. During his weekly visit with the boys, I explained the problem. He messed with it and solved the issue. Need I say he thinks more internationally than I do?
The address problem boiled down to the simple fact that numbers aren’t the most important part of residence addresses for most South American countries. I had a hard time wrapping my literal brain around the idea that a one-word street name was enough. In another place, I couldn’t even finish a word, much less the entire address. So much for how I thought it needed to happen.
Visa issues aside, we started on a new puzzle and chatted about our week. We also helped my oldest grandson think of interesting ways for a monster to die. I came up with a plague of gnats and stepping stones, some of which would sink into quicksand until someone decided “primordial ooze” sounded scarier. Another adult came up with a flying electronic chip that would cause a deadly malfunction. Our youngest grandson was content to make up new words that tickled everyone’s funny bone. Surprisingly enough, nobody missed football. The boys had a new sense of accomplishment since their dad instituted an after-school work program, aside from their chores. Never underrate a strong work ethic.
On another front, I’m preparing for another book launch. Book 2 of my Valiant series, Lovin’ On Red, will release April 9th. Millions of books glut the market these days. That said, it takes a lot to get noticed. The key components of a book launch are people who read an ARC, an advanced reader copy of the book, write a review, and share pre-made graphics about the book on social media. Does all that sound too manufactured? It’s not. It’s a simple matter of friends helping an author boost book sales, a necessary part of the marketing process.
However, what matters most is the heart attitude. I worked hard on this series, and I don’t think it would please the Lord if I suddenly acquired a case of false humility and acted ashamed of what I do. We’re not supposed to hide our lights under a bushel. Neither are we to point at ourselves in a braggy, look-at-me manner. I love writing and story-telling, but it’s not my end goal. Those gifts are a vehicle for me to express God’s love so others may see His goodness too.
Only the things we do in love matter. Everything else misses the mark.