Today we want to share with each other our stories of when we have waited and seen God’s perfect and good gifts. I’ll go first by starting at the end of my story! Just a few short days ago, I signed my first book contract with Standard Publishing! Friends, this has been a LONG time coming; five years of book proposals and nineteen book rejections to be exact.
Eight years ago, I was on a long plane ride when I began to reflect on my life; just how good God had been and how blessed I was. It was during this trip that I really saw that so much of the good that was there had to do with making right choices young. I began to feel a pull to invest in the lives of young girls. The thought was somewhat scary; but what new work for the Lord isn’t scary when we start?
After I returned home, I began writing. It is such a good thing that the Lord doesn’t reveal to us HIS time table, isn’t it? I don’t know if I would have been so excited to get started if I had known it was going to be nine years before I had the book in my hands.
Shortly after I started writing this book, I was worshipping in church and as my eyes were shut a picture came into my mind. Surrounded by pizza and brownies, I was sitting with a group of girls on my patio, sharing with them my story of choosing to follow hard after Jesus as a teen. After church, I shared with Greg this picture I had seen. He said it sounded like God and I better do it!
Where was I to start? I invited over a couple of sisters of my son’s friends, a niece and a neighbor girl. The night was horrible! There were crazy interruptions; cell phone calls about neighborhood shootings and loved pets flying away. I really wanted to quit mid-way through, but instead tried to wrap it up as fast as I could. I just wanted it to get over with! As they all began to gather their things to go home I said to the Lord, “I did it. It turned out terrible; but at least I obeyed!” It was then that I noticed one of the girls lingered and as she helped me clean up she asked, “Would you be willing to mentor me?”. Her question ended in the beginning of a mentoring group that has lasted for eight years and now next year at this time, I will have my very own book for teens to be able to go through with them!
Part of the wait in this story, was not getting ahead of God. The whole time that I was waiting, He was working on the author – me. Honing my writing skills, teaching me how teens think and what they want to know, working on my priorities on why I wanted a published work. There were those who encouraged me to self-publish, but I never sensed God’s peace in that; I just heard, “Keep waiting”. There were others who said I should set it aside; it just wasn’t what I was suppose to be doing at this time.
Timing is everything with God; we can never forget that. The day that I was offered the contract, my son had just graduated from high school and I was surrounded by those who could celebrate with me. The timing could not have been more perfect!
Do any of you have a story of seeing God’s best as you waited? Are some of you waiting even now and need the encouragement of others to keep on waiting? Let’s share together today and encourage one another that God’s purposes and plans are in the waiting.