So, if you haven’t heard, I’m kind of a big deal now. I mean, something I wrote is in a book. A real, published, bound, ink on the pages, book. I’m shocked the emails for autographs haven’t poured in yet…what’s wrong with you, faithful blog readers of mine?
Okay, if you’re not laughing or better yet, rolling your eyes, my bad, sorry. Obviously, I’m kidding.
This week I got to take the first look at a book that some of my writing was published in. It’s a neat story and I want to share with you how it all came about and what God has taught me through this “little adventure.” That cool?
At the beginning of this year, I felt God prompt my heart to start writing and share with others some of my journey as I grow with God. A blog seemed the most ideal way to do this, so I asked my husband to help me make it happen (he’s the techie in our home), he created Madhattin mom, and I got busy typing. With no theme, no goals, and no vision, I decided to only write when/if something was on my heart through my quiet time or if God showed me a valuable lesson elsewhere.
One afternoon I stumbled upon a site that was looking for younger women to submit guest posts into their blog that targeted high school/college aged kids. That same day I had written a post and felt a nudge to send it to the website publisher. I heard nothing for several weeks and completely forgot about it. Then, one random morning, I awoke to a surprise email in my inbox that they loved the piece and were posting it to their site that very day! I was thrilled and prayed that it would resonate deeply with some of the readers. To my amazement several comments followed from young ladies who were touched by the post. My heart was overwhelmed with the surge of a new passion, and perhaps, a new purpose in writing.
Several weeks later, another opportunity popped up “randomly” from a publisher that was seeking small devotional like stories for a compilation publishing opportunity. Again, I felt that familiar nudge, so I began to think and pray about what I could write to send in to the publishing agent. I selected two previously unpublished pieces and waited several weeks. Nothing happened. I continued to blog sporadically and was amazed to see God take things I wrote and open doors for them to be published on various Christian sites. I praised God that the readership of these sites enlarged my platform and ability to share with others in a meaningful way.
One afternoon this summer the email came from the editor, she loved the writings and informed me they would be included in the book, Big Dreams From Small Spaces. I was shocked, honored, and well— excited! Contracts came from the publishing house the following week. They even titled me as an “author.” Whoa. This was huge! I’ve never had dreams or aspirations to write for a living or anything like that, but honestly, the knowledge that someone liked my writing style enough to put it in a book was quite the ego boost.
This past week, several months after being notified the book had gone to the printers, I got to lay eyes on the published book for the first time. God so quickly deflated my temporarily pumped up ego, that it’s actually quite comical. You see, there’s a little essential truth that sometimes in moments of sweet success I forget: It’s not about me. The wonderful thing about God is any time I do have temporary amnesia– He’s fairly quick to remind me that He is the author of the story, and that my story (and your story for that matter) center around Him.
As I eagerly flipped through the book, it hit me like a stack of bricks.
Here’s the thing about this cute little book, it was planned way before I ever stepped into the scene, created a blog, or felt a Holy nudge. The publishing house had already planned all the vital details: decided how many pages there would be, what the design would look like, what types of stories they were seeking, and what types of writers they wanted involved. The book was going to be written, printed and distributed, with me, or without me. The book didn’t hinge on my participation, or on my talent, or really anything I could bring to the table. I was simply invited to join in the writing process, but in doing so, I would have to align my writing style, length, and format, with the previously planned content the publishers had scripted.
Do you see it? Isn’t it similar with God?
God doesn’t need you. He certainly doesn’t need me. God’s already got an awesome plan scripted and is fully capable of accomplishing it without our participation. He is the grand publisher in this story, but He’s not only that– He’s also the main character. This story is about God. His glory. His name. His renown. He is a big big God, and we are tiny, small, fleeting characters in a grand story where all glory, praise and honor belong to Him and Him alone.
Isn’t it crazy that God says to each of us, “Join me! I’m writing this amazing story and would love for you to participate. These few pages right here— are set aside for you, individually. I want to write on these pages with you and fill them with joy, adventure, liveliness, peace. Our story together is personal, intimate, and unlike anyones else’s….”
I believe God wants to write a story with your life. I know He is writing one with mine right now. It’s a grand, epic story, and like me— your part is only a small few pages. But those pages are important. Very important. And they are beautiful. Trust Him my friend, align your life with His plan, and let the story of you bring great glory to God!