Thursday, August 11, 2011

Someone asked me last week if I wished I had started writing earlier in life. I thought about it for a few seconds until I said no. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 3:1—To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. I believe my season to write began after I retired.

In one season of my life, I became a wife and the mother of four children. Days were spent concentrating on running a home and raising my family. Our church took up much of my free time, and then there were always the ballgames and school events to attend. School played an important role in our family since my husband worked for our local university and I was a teacher and then a school principal.  

Friends ask me all the time if I miss teaching, and I honestly respond that I don't. I loved it when I was there, but I was ready to reinvent myself--try something new. When I turned in my keys to the building where I'd been principal for seventeen years, I wondered what the Lord had in mind for me. I knew what I wanted, but I didn't know if it was part of His plan.

I'd started writing and found ACFW about two years before I left the profession I loved. As I studied the craft of writing through conferences and the very helpful ACFW loop, it didn't take me long to realize that I had just entered another area of education. I was no longer the teacher, I was the learner. And I loved it.

Maybe there are some writers who sit down and produce a great American novel on the first try, but I've never known one. It takes hours of hard work to craft a story. Then there are all the rewrites. Those could go on forever if the discerning writer didn't finally stop.

Writing can be a lonely job unless you have a support group. For me, that is what American Christian Fiction Writers, the writer friends I’ve met through that organization, and my phenomenal agent Natasha Kern have been. They lit the way for me as I walked the dark and lonely road toward publication. I know without them I wouldn't have achieved my goal of becoming published.

My life is very different now from what it was a few years ago. I get up in the mornings and instead of rushing off to school I grab a cup of coffee and head to my computer. I feel like I have finally achieved the dream I had for many years. God knew when it was the season for me to write, and I wait to see what else the Lord has in store for me. Whatever it is, He's promised to be there with me.

Many of you know how difficult the road to publication is. Let me encourage you to place all your doubts and frustrations in God’s hands. Even when we don’t understand His timing, He gently leads us through the seasons of our life.

What about you? Has God blessed you in the season of your life you are now experiencing? I would love to know about it.

1 comment :

  1. Sandra,

    Thank you so much for sharing some of your story and offering encouragement to those of us who are still on that long road to first becoming published. I love the symbolism of seasons (as evidenced by my personal blog, Seasons of Humility), and I love that verse in Ecclesiastes. Such an important lesson that God's timing is perfect and there are many seasons in our lives - each one of them important and an opportunity to grow! :)



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