Monday, May 11, 2015

The East Side of the Jordan

This year, I attended my third Bible Study Fellowship, an international organization that provides quality Bible study classes all over the globe. What’s unique about it is that everyone worldwide is on the same page. This year we studied The Life of Moses.

In every study I do, whether BSF or any other, I like to take away a nugget, something shiny I can hang onto that will bring me closer to God. This year was no exception. My shiny nugget is the Transjordan Tribes.

The Transjordan Tribes were Reuben, Gad, and half of Manasseh. When the Israelites were finally ready to move into the promised land, these tribes refused to go, saying they were happy on the east side of the Jordan. The crops were good there and the land good for grazing. They trusted in what they could see, rather than in what God wanted to give them. The sad ending to their stories is that each tribe eventually faded from the record. Nothing spectacular happens for them in the realm of God’s promises. They “settled” for the easy, the mundane, and that’s what they God gave them.

This lesson hit me—hard. Especially in the light of my ministry, my writing. Am I settling for the easy? Or is God challenging me to step out of my comfort zone and cross the Jordan into the promised land?

Up until now I’ve written light romance with a publishing company who, at the time, embraced new authors. Barbour Publishing helped me hone my craft, and I will be forever grateful to Tracie and Jim Peterson, my first editors, who saw something in me that even I couldn’t see. And to Rebecca Germany, the senior editor, who continued to embrace me into the Barbour family. There are authors who have been with them for many years, and that is right where God wants them, no question. That is the west side of the Jordan for them. But for me, I think He’s challenging me to do something different. To not settle on this side of the river, where I’m comfortable.

I’m struggling to move to the other side of the river. I’ve changed genres, writing mysteries. Essentially starting my career over. Prayers would be greatly appreciated as I move into this new phase.

One wouldn’t think that fiction writing would be so important, or considered a ministry, but it is. God has blessed me, and many others, with the gift of telling His story through parables. I am so humbled when I get a fan letter stating how much one of my books has touched them and/or helped them resolve an issue they were having. That’s when I know that God has greater plans for my writing than I could ever imagine.
I cannot stay on the east side of the river. I must move into the land that God has promised me, a land flowing with milk and honey. The milk of nourishment to my readers’ souls. The sweetness of His goodness for their weary lives.

Come with me. Let's splash in the Jordan together as we race to the other side where His promises await.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

The Plucky Heroine and the Disinterested Hero

New Blog Post at Craft Cinema!

Do you love a good romance? What do you like about it? Are you drawn to the stories where both parties fall in love at the same time? Or when one must pursue the other?

Admittedly, I love it when there’s tension. But that’s not always easy to put on the page when you, as the author, know these two need to be together.