Thursday, March 21, 2013

Lessons Learned

I learned a valuable lesson…the hard way. Well, if we learned our lessons the easy way, we’d soon forget the lesson plan, right? I made the mistake of telling the Lord I’m ready to go to a higher level as a writer. The next day, my bosses tripled my workload, sending my fatigue level six feet under.

Lesson learned: Don’t tell God when you’re ready for the next step. He’ll let you know when He’s ready for you to take that next step.
Maybe it’s a test to see how devoted I am to writing. That makes sense. If I can still hammer out a chapter here, or a page there, or even scribble an idea down on scrap paper while trying to keep up with the demands of six attorneys, three investigators, a conscientious supervisor, household chores, a husband, and two cats, then am I dedicated to this calling?
I almost missed the Florida Christian Writers Conference in Lake Yale earlier this month. Between financial challenges and my busy workload, I thought I’d have to pass. But the Lord paved the way for me to attend. Imagine the joy of taking classes with best-selling suspense thriller author Steven James ( The Pawn, The Rook, The Queen are only a few of his novels,  and Dan Walsh, (, who wrote Deepest Waters, The Unfinished Gift, and The Homecoming, among others). And the thrill of pitching my work-in-progress novel (The One) to an editor who showed so much enthusiasm, she suggested an idea for the sequel (which will be The Two).

I shared room with a delightful young woman from the east coast whose amazing story may make her the next Lisa Beamer.

And our Tampa Chapter took most of the awards at the Conference Banquet! I’m proud to be part of this outstanding group.

The conference was a cornucopia of valuable information. But the best lesson I learned was from author/speaker Rachel Hauck ( She related a dream in which Jesus came to her carrying a large burlap bag filled with books. He offered them to her, saying, “These are the stories I wanted someone to write, but they never got around to it.”

When tempted to drift away from the task of writing, I remind myself, “Don’t be one of those writers who never got around to writing one of His stories.”
Instead of telling the Lord I’m ready, I’ll ask Him, “Lord, have You prepared me for the next step of Your calling?”

Many thanks to Eva Marie Everson and Mark Hancock for this amazing conference!

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