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Christian writer shares experiences with nature and God

By Staff | May 2, 2018

CAROL SHETLER/The Luminary Models at a spring fashion show include (front to back): Carol McName, Eleanor Breasette, Joy Barto, Carol McMurray, Betty Schroyer, Julie Griffith, Laurie Galante, Maggie Ensey, Chichi Whaley and Lois Velkoff. The event occurred during a meeting of the Christian Women's Club of Williamsport on April 26. Fashions were supplied by the Dress Barn at Lycoming Mall.

MONTOURSVILLE – In Towanda, a man was teaching his granddaughter how to fly a kite. Along the hilltop, the eight-year-old’s natural blonde curls bounced as the two scampered back and forth. Until that time, the little girl’s parents, Ginny and Ray Merritt of Clyde, NY, were self-described hippies, who professed simple living and were out of step with their counterparts.

Ginny, now an author of books containing Christian values geared to pre-teens, told of her life during a meeting of the Christian Women’s Club of Williamsport. The group gathers monthly at the Community Baptist Church on Route 87, north of Montoursville.

“On a Christmas when in the third grade, I learned the true meaning of the holiday. Then I went off to college, met my husband and stopped being churched,” Merritt said.

The writer shared that she had cut ties with cultural values, became critical, unhappy and not nice to be around. Intsead of looking for a church, they spent their time with granola, goats and gardens.

“We liked our bare feet touching the warm soil and our backs to the sun,” she said. The couple planned a bike trip across the county. “I made a patchwork skirt, and with my long natural curly hair, ‘harem-scarem’ was the nickname some gave me,” Merritt said. When the first trip failed, a second via vehicle wasn’t successful either. “We never got out of the state,” she said.

CAROL SHETLER/The Luminary Ginny Merritt (left) a writer of books for pre-teens holds a copy of "The Window in the Wall." (At right) Audrey Wertman, Muncy, won a jar of candy with her guess close to the number of sweets in the container. The monthly gathering, held at the Community Baptist Church of Montoursville, is hosted by the Christian Women's Club of Williamsport.?

It was 18 years later when the aforesaid experience with a kite spoke to her heart. “Taking her cues from us, our daughter didn’t like animals on leases or being caged or contained in any way. So, when mealtime came, instead of returning the kite to a dark closet, she wanted to let go of the string and set the kite free,” said the mother.

The wise grandfather agreed that sounded like a good idea, but went on to cite the consequences of letting go. He said the kite would fly for a little while, but soon would be torn when entangled in the treetops. Kites were designed to fly with someone holding the string.

The writer likened the kite to our lives in that we reach our highest potential under God’s control. “When we choose Him, our lives will have peace, joy, freedom, and people will like being around us. That June, on a hilltop in Towanda, we gave up our rebellion and found true peace,” Merritt said.?

Since then, Merritt has used her English degree to author Christian fiction. “The Window in the Wall” is one of several stories based on Biblical accounts, this one on the city of Jericho. The writer imagined Tahlia was a niece of Rehab who hid spies on her rooftop under a pile of flax. Merritt knew that flax was used to make linen woven into cloth. So, she went to a heritage village in Cooperstown to see the process, even growing flax in her garden.?

Merritt enjoys writing and is grateful for the support of family and friends. She also enjoys traveling and speaking to groups such as the one in Montoursville, a part of Stonecroft Ministeries.?