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crazy praises

Tragedy of Losing a Child to Cancer Inspires Talented Bush Poet

FAITH NEWS SERVICE – Emerging Australian author Christine J Bourne, delivers the Christian message in true Aussie style in her new book, Crazy Praises.

Chris’s writing has also been inspired by her youngest daughter, who tragically passed away from cancer. That life-changing experience brought her closer to God and also helped inspire her ambition to write.

A traditional bush poet, Chris is a natural storyteller, bringing to life stories of people, places and profound and personal experiences with God in a way that is authentic and relatable. The poems are humourous, thoughtful, joyful and intriguing. Emotions are stirred and God’s promises are revealed.

Bush poetry has a meter and rhyme that draws in the reader/ listener and the message about God is delivered straight to the heart. It’s an unusual style in Christian publishing, but it really works.

Chris has been writing this way from early childhood and it’s not only a gift from God, but a gift she shared with her father, who was a talented bush poet, writer and entertainer.

Her family were outdoor showmen, following the agricultural country show circuit through most of the east coast of Australia. She travelled in the truck with her father and they’d tell stories or recite poetry as the miles flew by. He’d make up a line, she’d come up with the next, no matter how absurd, and they’d laugh at their creative collaboration. Her mother would take Chris and her sister to church every Sunday in whatever town they were in.

The years spent travelling developed in her a deep love and appreciation of God’s works. She is moved by the beauty of wild landscapes and of His beautiful creatures. Through her faith, she came to see how God works in the diverse lives of people she knew.

Chris says that she loves writing this way and is grateful for this beautiful gift of being able to speak to the hearts and minds of people about how great God is.

The inspiration for her first book began in 2018 at a church service in Maleny, Queensland.  The Pastor at Church on the Rise posed the question: why do fast days go so slow? She wrote a poem of the same name, the same day and it led to her first book Ice Cream is Good but Jesus is Better, a volume of poetry that posed the question If what you’re doing isn’t working, why not try God instead?

Another book, Who is Your Goliath? followed a year later. This book explains how God works in our lives. She also draws inspiration from everyday life from the Bible and from the “Word for Today” published by Vision Christian Media, both essential reading for her, on a daily basis.

Crazy Praises is Chris’s third book of contemporary Christian poetry and she says that the inspiration for Crazy Praises came from reflecting on the many times that God has moved in her life and how grateful she is for His help. Like her previous books, Crazy Praises is a collection of real-life stories or observations about life that are clever, powerful, personal and encouraging, reassuring the reader of the ways God loves us and helps us. The poems “The Last Wish”, “The Feather on the Floor” and “Last Thursday” all have a personal connection.

They speak of a dying man’s last wish, unexplained messages from beyond the grave and a church community helping to repair a flood damaged property. Other poems come from things that have happened, people that she knows and how great our God is and how worthy of praise is He.

Crazy Praises poses difficult questions, then answers through the storylines of a poem and finishes off with powerful prayers. It’s joyful reading for those who believe and thought-provoking for those who don’t know God. All three books are published by Ark House.

Chris has a Diploma in Christian Counselling, is mad about horses and lives on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland with husband Peter, who has been a horse breaker and trainer for over 40 years. He calls himself a horse “listener’ and says he tries to help them find their peace. Between them they have 14 horses and 2 dogs, Joy and Archie.  

There is no doubt in Chris’ mind that Joy was a gift from God as Joy came into her life a month after Chris’ youngest daughter passed away from cancer. God’s ways are wonderful and often He uses animals to help us heal. Chris is on the Chaplaincy Committee at the Maleny High School, served as a volunteer with Joy as a therapy dog at the Aged Care facility at Maleny and is a member of two church congregations – St Margaret’s Anglican at Woombye and Church on the Rise, Maleny.

Chris has written five books including her father’s Memoir The Last Mile – Tales of a Travelling Showman and is currently writing two more books of Christian poetry. You can find more about Chris on the website ChristineJBourneauthor.com or her Facebook page ChristineJBourneauthor.