In 2012, I was first offered a book contract through a traditional publisher. Of course, my initial reaction was beyond thrilled. For six months, I thought this was God's will for my life. It was a dream come true.
But then red flags started flaring. Not just once or twice. It was enough warnings that sent me straight to my knees in prayer. To ask for discernment. To not move forward, until God said so.
When I prayed about it, the Lord said a loud, "No!" It caught me by surprise. I thought that when a door opened it meant to walk through it. Not so! Just because an opportunity arises for us doesn't necessarily mean to accept it.
I wrestled with this because I didn't think that I could self-publish. I knew nothing about the world of publishing, editing, or marketing. Finances were tight. It was so intimidating to me. Despite my dream to write, I didn't even have a college degree. I had a dozen logical reasons to not become an author or self-publish.
Yet at a Woman of Faith conference where I was volunteering, God used a stranger to speak life, hope, and truth into me. Prior to this Christian event, I had prayed specifically for the Lord to clearly show me what to do.
Oh boy, did He ever! His precise message for me was to trust that He would equip me in my writing project. But I had to first trust Him and take action. He specifically gave me the verse, "Faith without action is dead." (James 2:14-22)
And the crazy part about it is the Lord confirmed it when this stranger said the same Bible verse to me. I stood there in awe. Shivers ran up and down my spine.
It was one of those supernatural God moments. When He speaks to you. When He places the right people onto your pathway at the right time and for the right purpose.
Most definitely, it was a tangible sign giving me the green light. To not simply have an idea, but to take action and pursue self-publication.
I decided to go for it. To take a step of faith to purchase my $250 ISBN author identifications for ten books. Did I mention that I didn't have the money? Nor did I consider writing or self-publishing ten books.
Dare I say our heavenly Father's dreams for us are far larger than our wildest dreams? That His plans and purpose for us are higher, greater, and beyond our imagination?
A few days following this chance meeting with a stranger, a miracle happened. It was unexpected. Quite extraordinary!
A mysterious check arrived in the mail for $250. Woozer! When we pray and seek wisdom, God can move mountains on our behalf!
Today, if you sense Jesus prompting you to step way outside your comfort zone to write or self-publish a book, trust that you are not alone. He is with you. He will anoint you. He will most certainly grow your faith during your writing journey. And the beauty of trusting God is that He will receive all of the glory!
Here it is, five years later in which I'm currently crafting my fourth book, Sacred Wandering: Growing Your Faith in the Dark. Lord willing, it will be complete and launched in early 2018. Compared to my other books, this one is stretching me further. The idea's and inspirations are flowing sporadically.
What keeps me moving forward is three red cardinals that showed up following my prayer to see the three red cardinals at the same time. Once again, I'm stepping into the unknown and trusting God to do what He does best. To guide me. To clearly speak to me. To pour out His anointing and Holy Spirit upon my life. For His will to be done.
If you're pondering to write or self-publish your book, please feel free to share. I love hearing stories about how people got started writing and how it's impacted their lives in such a positive way.