If you have a moment today, pop over to my article titled ‘Embracing Who I Am’ published on the (In)Courage site.
Happy Monday sweet friends. For the next several days I’m re-posting some devotions for people to use who are attending the She Speaks conference later this week. My prayer is that these messages will resonate with each of us in some personal and relevant way.
If you are coming to She Speaks, I pray these devotions usher your heart into some tender moments of reflection before the conference.
If you aren’t coming to She Speaks, I hope you’ll still look for some nuggets of truth tucked within the next several day’s posts. I’m trusting Jesus to reveal to you whatever these nuggets may be and that they’ll be relevant to something you’re facing this week.
In the giant world of publishing, I’m a not a giant author. I’ve never stepped my toes near the New York Times Best Seller List nor been featured in the front windows of a major bookstore chain. And if by some miracle I hear of a Walmart carrying one of my books, I nearly pee in my pants.
But, inside this small author, you can always find a big message. By big, I mean big to me. It’s just the way I process what God teaches me. I write it down.
Soon many of you will be packing your bags complete with outfits, hairspray and shoes that are too cute to be comfortable.
Tucked in and amongst these things will be a little stack of papers covered in words, filled with dreams. For some it’s the talk you’ll be giving or an article you’ve written or a book proposal you’re presenting.
For months you’ve prayed, written, thought, researched, hoped, and poured out your very best efforts for a few days at this conference.
Will they see how much I want this?
Will they know how strongly I feel led by God to speak or write about this?
Will they think I’m gifted enough, talented enough, and able enough?
Or, am I just fooling myself and wasting massive amounts of time on a pipe dream?
Sweet sisters, I know these thoughts all too well because my files contain book proposals that never got published and talks I prepared but never gave. I’ve spent hours- days- weeks- sometimes months working on things that never came to fruition in the way I thought it should. So, was all that preparation and writing a waste of time?
No, not at all and let me tell you the Biblical reason why.
When I was a little girl I remember one person praying specifically for me everyday- my great grandfather.
I have vivid memories of him sitting in his chair for hours reading the biggest Bible I’d ever seen and bowing his head in prayer for what seemed like unreasonable amounts of time. While I was flitting to and fro about his house causing trouble, making messes, and asking him to please watch me do one more dance routine to music that made his head hurt, he prayed for me.
I’m convinced his prayers helped turn that little wispy, shallow girl into a woman hungering for God.
And don’t you know I’d give just about anything to have one page of that man’s wisdom written down and preserved for me to treasure now. All he knew, all those experiences with God, all those prayers, all that wisdom went to his grave with him and that grieves my heart.
Psalm 78: 1-4 says, “O my people, hear my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth. I will open my mouth in parables, I will utter hidden things, things from of old- what we have heard and known, what our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.”
Verse 7 goes on to say, “Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.”
The experiences with God and the wisdom you’ve gained in your journey with Him will be treasures for someone. Whether it’s your children or your friends or the masses- God will make sure the exact audience who is supposed to be blessed by your teaching will be. And with that assurance, write down what God teaches you.
No time spent recording God’s faithful presence in our lives is ever a waste.
I pray each of you discovers a ministry beyond your wildest dreams.
But don’t get discouraged if the details of that ministry do not take shape the exact way you think they should. I bet my big, strong, farmer great grandfather had no clue his prayers would one day turn into a ministry for women. But they did.
And that makes me smile.
Nothing done with the focus on God is ever a waste of time.
Be sure to visit again tomorrow for the second post of this series leading up to She Speaks called, “Competing and Comparing.”