Sunday, September 1, 2013

I’ve been writing on one thing and another for about 37 years now. Doing novel-length fiction for 30 years.

Today, September 1, 2013, is the release day of my first paid work of fiction.

After thirty years.

I could talk about how God is faithful. How we should always wait upon Him. How we should never give up on a dream, especially if we feel God has placed it in our heart. Or how our callings should not be neglected, regardless of how impractical they seem.

The thing I feel pressing most on my heart at the moment, however, is a line from last week’s sermon.

People are often drawn to the wholeness and goodness of God within us ... but we’re not here to build a personal fan club.

It’s been my greatest fear through all this that the ambition, pride, and vanity still lurking inside me would rise up, and somehow in the lure of the moment, I’ll bow to them, rather than to the God who gave me breath and talent and the means to bring stories to life on the page.

A wise man once remarked that a person’s true mettle isn’t revealed through the trial of obscurity, but through success. If this is so, and God is gracious enough to keep opening doors to my writing, then my character will be tested in ways it never has before. And I find that terrifying. I’ve seen others who thought they could stand that test, and couldn’t.

For that matter, I’ve experienced what it feels like to think I can stand against a particular temptation, only to fall flat on my face. Not just once, but repeatedly. With some extremely far-reaching effects. I’ve no desire to go back there.

An old song from DC Talk comes to mind ...

What if I stumble, what if I fall?
What if I lose my step and I make fools of us all?
Will the love continue, if the walk becomes a crawl?
What if I stumble, what if I fall?

I dread the thought of bringing shame the One who bids me step up onto this platform He’s given me. And I’m acutely uncomfortable with people looking too closely at me, because I know just how fallible I am.

Still, I must not turn away from the opportunity to bless others, to minister where He gives me words and opportunity. The world is hurting and needy, believers in Christ or not. All I’m required to do, I’m reminded again, is show up, be available, and let Him to the work. Let His Spirit be the one who convicts. God doesn’t call the qualified, we were told, but He qualifies the called. None of the original twelve were anything special. But there was one thing they were known for, later ...

Whatever I write, whatever I do, may I be remembered for that as well.

Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”

13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. (Acts 3 & 4, NKJV)


  1. Great post, Shannon! We all need reminded that our purpose is to bring glory to God and not to ourselves.

    Congratulations on the release of Pioneer Christmas. I'm looking forward to reading it.

  2. Thanks so much, Kay! I hope you enjoy it. And we do all need that reminder, and often, don't we?

  3. I didn't read your post yesterday, Shannon...I read it today, when I was struggling with this call to write, and fighting tears most of the day because of the weight of this work. Thank you so much for encouragement to press on.

    Love you!

  4. {{{{Lisa}}}} You're welcome, and I love you too!! <3


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