I apologize for starting my post with a cliché, but I can’t help myself. God doesn’t call the equipped. He equips the called. When God asked me to write a book, I was terrified and embarrassed to tell anyone. I’m a librarian, and I know that it takes more than a gift to become an accomplished writer. It takes years of hard work.
One morning, after months of stalling, I committed to writing the story God gave me. That same day I opened my email, and it included an invitation to attend a Christian Writers’ conference at East Texas Baptist University in Marshall, Texas. It was the first and only invitation I had ever received to attend a writers’ conference. I listed all the reasons I couldn’t attend, but my husband insisted I go.
I met author Judy Christie at the Texas conference, who connected me with my editor, Jamie Chavez. Judy also encouraged me to find a writers group. Thanks to Google, I found Middle Tennessee Christian Writers where I met published author Kaye Dacus and other writers. It was through Kaye I found American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW).
Last week I attended the ACFW conference with a long list of needs. The first prayer request was for a mentor. God blessed me with three. I travelled to St. Louis with three amazing writers: Krista Phillips, Liz Johnson and Carol Award winner, Patrick Carr.
An overwhelming task I face is to build a web following. God supplied me with a critique partner who also has expertise in this area. Crystal Brothers is a talented blogger with over 10,000 followers. Check out her blog at www.servingjoyfullly.com. Crystal didn’t hesitate to offer her talents to help me grow my platform.
I prayed over the conference program and asked my Bible study group to do the same. God gave me every appointment for which I asked, and the results are that two major publishers asked me to send my manuscript, and three top agents ask me to send a proposal.
A few months ago, an agent asked me what known author might endorse my book. My writing friends write in different genres. I wondered, How am I supposed to get a big name author to endorse my book? I asked God to arrange a meeting, and he did. At the awards banquet, which was attended by over 500 authors, the seat to my right was filled by our keynote speaker, Lauraine Snelling. Ms. Snelling has published over 70 books. I held my breath. I couldn’t believe I was going to spend the next two hours sitting with her. At the end of the banquet, she asked me to send her secretary a copy of my manuscript. If she likes it, she’ll endorse it. I know that’s a big “if” but I serve a big God.
May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal encouragement and good hope by grace, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good work and word. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17.
I am on an amazing journey, and I am thankful to God that he hears my prayers. I pray that everything I say or do may glorify Him. I often wonder why he chose me. And I’m reminded of Gideon. “He was the least of his tribe.” I am the least, but God is the greatest.
#ACFW #LauraineSnelling #Patrickcarr #KristaPhillips #Lizjohnson #servingjoyfully