Today, it is my pleasure to introduce the author of our non-fiction, companion devotional, The Old Fashioned Way: Reclaiming the Lost Art of Romance.
Ladies and gentlemen, the one and only Ginger Kolbaba…
When I was in the fourth grade, my teacher, Miss Raymond, asked the class about the future and what would happen if we ran out of energy, oil, and electricity. She was looking for us to be creative about other ways that we could survive.
I knew the answer and I was thrilled to share it. “We could go back to the way things were in the 1800s. With horses and buggies and stuff.” I thought it was clearly brilliant; Miss Raymond did not.
Looking back these many moons later, I am no longer thrilled with the prospect of returning to the days when we had no air conditioning, cars, or DVRs that can record endless episodes of Downton Abbey. While I may not want to travel around on horseback, there are a few ways that I do still agree with my younger self who saw value in the way things used to be. I yearn for the days of good old fashioned relationships. When front porches were used to sit out and greet neighbors passing by. When a handshake meant the same as a contract signed, witnessed, and notarized. When saying “I do” meant “until I die.”
So when the Tyndale editors and Rik Swartzwelder asked me to write the nonfiction counterpart to the movie Old Fashioned, I jumped at the opportunity. In writing 40 days’ worth of reflections on different “old fashioned” values, such as chivalry and kindness and honor, I was able to share vulnerably what those issues mean to me—someone who has yearned to do things right, but who has too often missed the mark, and who is grateful for redemption and second (and fifth and twenty-seventh) chances. I wanted to fill the pages with grace, encouragement, and hope—and even a bit of challenge.
Obviously the “good old days” weren’t always so good. Neither have we arrived at the pinnacle of knowledge in our society today. But I do think we can harness what was good about yesteryear’s and today’s mores and use them to become the kind of people who overflow with the beauty of Jesus in all our relationships.
That’s what I think about when I think of being old fashioned: I want to be a person who is respectful, who genuinely listens, who takes time to laugh and cry with others, who honors others, who forgives, and who focuses on the other person without having to check text and email messages every few minutes. Someone who lets a yes be yes and a no, no. Someone who lives by the Golden Rule: “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you” (Matthew 7:12). Those are pretty good traits to have whether you’re riding a Mustang with a tail or one that has a Ford emblem on its front grill.
I love the fact that a book about reconsidering old fashioned virtues is releasing first in a digital format on September 1 and then in print on January 1. That’s what being old fashioned is all about—combining the best of both worlds. I’m blessed (another old fashioned word!) to be part of the Old Fashioned movement. I hope you’ll check out the book and let me know your thoughts at http://www.gingerkolbaba.com/.
– Ginger Kolbaba