Christians in the World: Archived January 2015
Choose carefully the road less traveled
January 27, 2015
I was headed to a meeting with my writing group and decided to take a short-cut. You know, new year-new road kind of thing. Shake up the routine. Thirty minutes later, when I didn’t know if I should turn right or left at the cross-road, I knew I was lost. It took another 30 minutes of wandering before I decided to turn to the expert. I set the GPS. Eventually I arrived, frazzled and very late.
Why is it that we struggle so long on our own before asking for help? My granddaughter
has holes on her math paper from erasing before she asks for help. I remember knitting a baby blanket for a friend. The longer I worked on the blanket the more narrow it became. My dear mother-in-law offered to help, but no, I wanted to do it on my own.
My husband NEVER asks for help. The same can be said for our spiritual life. Why do we struggle on our spiritual walk when we have a road-map provided by the expert – God himself? The Bible provides all the answers we need as we move along on life’s road.
I have committed to reading the Bible through in 2015. I challenge you to do the same! Why struggle when we can follow the map?
Let me hear from you!
January 14, 2015
I would like to devote most of my blogs this year to sharing your stories of how Jesus has worked in your lives. How has He answered prayers, set you on the right path when you were headed the wrong way, comforted you when you needed strength?
Basically, how has He revealed Himself to you? Please email me your stories. (firstname.lastname@example.org) I will gladly change your name and identifying information if you want. I have MANY stories I can share, but I want to start with one that has great meaning for me right now.
I sometimes wonder if I am actually doing what God wants me to do by focusing on writing. Writing takes hours and hours of time – time I could be using in other service-related ways. I pray. I wait. I don’t feel any Godly hugs. No tongues of fire settle over me.
God answered my prayers, but not how I expected.
Instead, He sent people to help me succeed. Back when I decided to write a book, I had no idea how to start. Do chapters have to be a specific length? How do you know how to stop and start sections? I wrote the book and it was awful. Into my life comes Michelle Buckman, author extraordinaire, with an invitation to attend a workshop she was hosting. Michelle became my mentor. I have learned to write literally “at her knee.” She has spent hundreds of hours helping me flesh out words in a meaningful way. And she also helped me get
agent! Praise God!!
Now, according to my new agent, I need to develop a web page, a blog, and an author site. I can work my way around WORD and I can even make power points presentations, but that is the limit to my computer skills. I tried making the blog. Frustration set in. I hated what I had created. I couldn’t figure out how to make posts go where I wanted them.
I cried. I stared at the computer. I cried some more. Then I thought of a friend from a writing group, a past newspaper editor. Would she help me? Dianne Owens created my website, blog and author site. I write the material and send it to her. She puts in where it needs to go. She created a marketing plan for me, and quite honestly, does most of the work. I love my website and I think under her coaching my blogs are becoming more meaningful.
Without a doubt I would have quit writing without these two women. Was it coincidence that God put them in my life just when I needed them? I don’t think so. My question is answered. Yes, I am in God’s will. I will continue to write!
Thank you God for caring for the sparrows, and for me, slightly more than they.
A little hope is a dangerous thing
January 1, 2015
I read in my local newspaper an article written by syndicated columnist Ronnie McBrayer (www.ronniemcbrayer.me). In the article he stated that hope was a senseless word given the way we toss it around, like “I hope my team wins,” or “I hope it doesn’t rain.” For all of its ambiguity, the word is still worthy.
Mr. McBrayer gave examples of prisoners of war, those suffering domestic violence, soldiers returning from scenes of extensive violence. After the situations have ended, the ordinary people are found intact - wounded, but not defeated.
This made me think of my life and the hope that I cling to. I stare at the clouds right now and hope it doesn’t rain. I need to go to town later. I hope Deadly Decision reaches the people that need to read it, and I hope my work in progress expands my writing ability. I hope for a diagnosis for my breathing problem, and I hope for world peace.
My “hopes” may encourage me to continue writing, keep keeping those doctors’ appointments, and so on, but those are not the hopes I live for. My hope rests in the promise of Jesus, who told me that if I call on His name He will remember me. My hope includes His presence at my side when I am confronting scary tests. My hope tells me when my time here is done I will live with Him in a better place.
My hopes in Jesus are more than wishes. They are guarantees, filed away in the folder of my heart, close at hand when I need them.
We all have a list of wishes. Most are silly things, out of our control, like the weather. But my “wish” for you as the New Year begins is that your wish list will include the guarantees given by God Himself.
If you go out today, and it looks like rain where you are, I hope you have an umbrella.