Secrets Of Success Found In Small Places

Thank you for participating in the Unglued pre-release blog party last week. I’m so encouraged by your response. I treasure every single drop of your enthusiasm and appreciate it so very, very much.

I just got back from the International Christian Retailers Show in Orlando, FL. This is a big book convention where publishers, authors, agents, media, and bookstore owners all gather to talk shop. Books are pitched. Books are sold. Books are talked about a lot!

I went to this conference years ago when I was just a wanna-be writer with a book proposal and a dream. This year, as I signed pre-release copies of Unglued, there were two thoughts going through my mind.

First…thank you Jesus that people actually came to my book signing. Seriously, there’s nothing quite like standing there with a big stack of free promotion books, a sharpie marker, and not a soul interested.

Can you imagine the joy the publisher would feel toward me in that moment? If we can’t even give the book away, how in heavens are we going to sell it?

So when people actually came, I just wanted to hug every single one of them. Seriously. And if I had lots of money I would have wanted to buy them all a steak dinner. I’m not kidding.

The second thought was…look for those desperate for your encouragement. Many of the people that came through my book signing line were people interested in writing a book one day. I remember being there. I know what it feels like to walk around with a tote bag full of book proposals and a heart full of nervous hope.

I felt the weight of responsibility to give them the encouragement I so desperately needed when I was in their shoes.

Maybe you are there right now. Whether it’s the hope of being an author or another dream you have bumping around in your heart, here’s what I’ve learned:

* Always remember rejection from man doesn’t mean rejection from God. If God has gifted you to write-write. You don’t need a book deal to have an impact with your writing. The same is true with other dreams…sing, create, teach, paint, develop-use your gifts right where you are to bless others.

* Most overnight success stories are years in the making. Value the daily discipline of small steps, hard work, honing your craft, and putting in time learning and developing. Take classes. Be mentored. Push through those moments you want to slack off. And do it over and over-year after year.

* Be a blessing to others. Don’t keep your work to yourself. Find people who could be blessed with your work. I love to write. But what I love more than writing is to see that my writing is helping other people. That’s where I find the encouragement to push through the hard times.

* Expect opposition.The challenges and disappointments and set backs are all part of it. And honestly, these hard times serve a great purpose. I think I’ve learned much more from my failures in writing then in my successes. But just remember to use these lessons…don’t waste them by giving up too soon.

* Look for the small open doors right in front of you. I always scratch my head when I meet people that tell me they want to write and speak but aren’t willing to teach a small Bible study first. If God is calling you to do something-He’ll have a door open in front of you. But it might be a small door. Look for the small door and walk through it.

Actually, dance through it with great joy because He will always do great things with people willing to be faithful in the small.

Here are the names of the winners from last week: Carolina Benavidez, Darlene Rench, Carla Capers, Jamie Phillips Brantley, Karen Roquet, and Ladonna Verstrate. If you see your name here, please email jennie@proverbs31.org with your address and we would love to send your gift to you!


  1. Serena says

    With 4 kids and homeschooling and housework, things are crazy! I think I am unglued all the time! Just once, I’d love to go to bed without feeling like I messed up another day! I need this study!

  2. Jane says

    You were talking about me and my 15 daughter in your story of frustrating morni gs with tears and angst. One thing that has helped is giving us both a reward for getting out of the house early. Ex. If we leave early on the morning she has late start, then we will go get a bagel and coffee on the way and have a sweet mom/daughter time. this gives both of us incentive and a reward to get out the door. It’s sweet when it works!

  3. Meretta Slaughter says

    Praise God my youngest child is out on her own. She has an awesome job. Plus she is going to a christian college. Life was not easy with her. She wanted night time kindergarten class, so that tells you how the school years went. She was so bad i signed her out of school at 16 years old. After sucide attempts she was finally found to be bipolar. After finding the right meds she is a productive young lady. Advice to mom’s having trouble is this to shall pass. And chose your battles. Pray hard. Thank you Lysa for all your studies. I am looking forward to Unglued

  4. says

    Lysa, thank you for sharing this humorous and honest post. You provided great inspiration and encouragement. As you put it so well, I am in the “wannabe writer” stage right now. I recently self-published a book entitled “Rise and Shine”. I always had a desire to write a book but did not envision it to be a book of this kind. The book is a culmination of my story, writings and photographs. My source of inspiration is from being a two-timer. Yes, I must confess that I am a two-timer and I am pretty darn proud of it. Two-time survivor that is! My first battle was at age 11 when I was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness called aplastic anemia. The second battle was in 2011 for cancer.

    My hope is that the book encourages others and reminds them…
    There is hope in hopeless situations.
    There is light in the darkness.
    There is peace that surpasses all understanding.
    My goal is to get the book into waiting rooms of doctors’ offices, specifically cancer treatment centers.

    Until then, I will keep taking those small steps!

  5. Nancy says

    My 86 year old neighbor keeps telling me I should write a book of the things that have gone on in my life, esp. with my children in their teen years. But mostly because I keep telling her this funny little conversations I have with my grand children. For instance: My daughter was expecting her second child, a little girl. They decided to name her Elizabeth. Her 4 yr old son said, ” mom I can’t say that name.” She told it was alright he could just call her Liz. So when he was spending the night a few days later, I said, “your mom says you are going to call the baby Liz.” He said, “yes, cause I cant’ say Elizabeth”. I said, “you can’t say Elizabeth??” He said “nope I can’t say Elizabeth, so I am going to call her Liz.” All the while saying Elizabeth just as plain as could be and having a smile on his face. When I told my daughter, she just laughed and said “that little imp”. He is always coming out with stuff like that, and I am convinced that he knows just what he is doing.