For years my heart has harbored a vague dream.
On top of pursuing speaking from a very clear call . . . the call that came at a retreat as the speaker was speaking and my heart was set on fire. (Luke 24:32) The Spirit of God was speaking to me . . . He said, “You will do this one day.” To which I replied, “Ok, but You have a lot of work to do.” because my last stint at public speaking was in tenth grade, and I’d vowed to never again . . .
But when God calls, who can resist Him?
So I took every opportunity He opened for me.
There is nothing like your home church to form and re-form you for the ministry God is shaping you for. I am most grateful for the Pastors and Elders of East Lincoln Alliance Church who opened doors for me to practice using my gifts through teaching and leading.
Beyond the clear call to speak, I’ve also long-sensed a call to write.
Because it was so vague, the “what, where, and when” always seemed elusive.
I’ve been blogging with very little regularity since late 2007, but it never caught fire as other’s blogs have. That didn’t really bother me, so I’d just keep blogging away, waiting for the next open door. The Lord had faithfully opened many doors in my years of walking with Him.
Sometimes I’d sense that I had missed “it” somehow. I wondered if I should have done something or other. But what else could I do but wait for His timing?
It was about a year ago when my friend, Jenn messaged me to tell me her high-school friend, the director of Sammy’s Inc, was looking for a Bible Study writer.
I was already acquainted with Sammy’s (Strength Among Many Ministry) because I had encountered their ministry while seeking a place for my daughter to get to know women in her area several years back. Through Facebook, I met Sammy’s founder, Pennie, and chatted with her via private message. I loved the heart of the ministry right away.
Jenn’s message came when I was feeling displaced and lonely a year after our move. I’d been asking the Lord, “What is your next step for me?”
“How ironic,” I thought when I learned about the ties. [Pennie had moved from the original location and had turned the ministry over to new leaders by this time. She happened to attend the church we landed in after our move in late 2015.]
A few weeks later, four of us met together and sought the Lord on topics for the two-semester year.
As is often the case when pursuing His plan, He put the same topics on each of our hearts. They were “Intimacy with God” and “Prayer.”
I pressed in for the words and plunked away at the keys in 2017.
Because the whole process of hiring writers was new to Sammy’s, we encountered our share of challenges along the first stretch of the journey. We ended up being squeezed for time in the summer, and some errors were made in the formatting. Unfortunately, they weren’t caught until after printing, so when I received my first copy, I was startled to find what seemed like missing pieces. It’s hard to explain, but a few homework sections that followed commentary had been pulled out and placed along the side. They’d been rearranged to fit the former structure on behalf of the teachers.
Though I struggled with knowing the errors were there, I’ve heard only good reports from those who worked through dearly BeLoved study last semester.
It was a lesson for this recovering perfectionist to be sure.
The formatting has since been cleaned up, and you know God — when we are on the road with Him, He works all things together for good.
The errors made in dearly BeLoved moved us to make a more consistent format structure which would enable the designer to plug sections into specific headings in the study. This saved all of us a ton of time. The second study, divine CONVERSATIONS, is beautifully laid out and is available to purchase here.
Aren’t they beautiful? They’ve done a fantastic job of choosing fonts and colors, and I couldn’t be happier with the final product! If you would like to do a study, you can purchase one here.
If you have ever had a desire to start a Bible study in your community, but haven’t known where to start, please consider joining the Sammy’s family which currently consists of six locations. Their resources and support are wonderful. To read the heart of their mission, you can click here.
If you want more information, or if you order the study, I’d love to hear from you! Your encouragement means so much!