The past few weeks have been a whirlwind of wonderful encouragements by God. As I have sought out contributors for the book, "Unexpected Gifts", I have already met many, many people who desire to share stories of the blessings they have received from and through their special kids. These wonderful parents are an inspiration to me and I know that you will be blown away by their stories of hope, encouragement, and the limitless love of God through their circumstances.
Funny how life works. You go years and years without even realizing that an entire population exists and then you reach out in faith and BOOM, the flood gates are opened! Have you ever had this happen to you?
This past week I had the opportunity to share such an occurance at Sunday School. Lewis Jackson, one of my teachers, taught a few classes about how the Holy Spirit works in and through us, speaking to us if we will listen. His lessons were about hearing God's voice, hearing the enemy's voice and how to tell the difference. One great thing about this class is the willingness of people to share their experiences. Lewis asked if anyone wanted to speak and several told inspiring stories. After some hesitation, I also shared that I would be writing a book.
"I know, I know...pie in the sky idea," I told them. "But God layed it on my heart and I HAD to listen and obey." Truth be told, obedience is not always so easy for me but for some reason, this time was different. Maybe it was his recent teachings that encouraged me to follow the prompting of the Holy Spirit. I certainly knew that this project had the potential to bear fruit. Or maybe it was the encouragement of the my husband and friends. Whatever the reason, I could not say no. Have you ever felt the strength of God's request for you in this way? So powerful, that you just could NOT let it go??
I also shared with them that the minute I began the formal steps of writing the book, I clearly heard the voice of the enemy. I had just hit "Send" on the email to potential contributors when the taunting began.
"You have no idea how to write a book Christi! What in the world do you think you're doing?? You don't have the skills, the brains or the connections. Even if you do write the book, who will publish it? Who will even want to read it?"
Sound familiar? We all hear it sometimes. But this time I recognized it for what it truly was. The enemy. Still, fear clouded my brain and I struggled to stay focused on my assignment from God.
But guess what? Within a few short hours of hearing these voices of doom and gloom, God showed up in a mighty way, opening doors that I had not even known existed!
Emails from friends and acquaintances wanting to contribute their stories to the book came pouring in. Words of encouragement were shared from people who have their own special kids and KNOW how a book like this can help other parents. And unknown connections with publishers and writers willing to help me edit the stories were offered.
This is not the end of the story. It is only the beginning. Daily, I continue to hear from parents about their special children, their faith in God and their gratefulness in being able to share their stories. This is about a community of believers sharing how God has blessed them through these amazing children. This is about a God that loves us so much that He shows us His gifts when we least expect them. And this is about giving our thanks and praise to HIM.
God is undoubtedly reassuring me this is the journey He wants me to take. Perhaps He has one in mind for you too. You just need to take that next step in FAITH.
In receiving these confirmations from Him, my resolve to continue has taken full flight.
Hebrews 13:20-21 empowers us telling us, "Now may the God of peace...make you complete in every good work to do His will."
God will equip me for this task, I am certain.
And I'm all in for Him!