5 Things I learned in October

Dolly Lee prayer, Spiritual Formation 0 Comments

Several days ago I watched the sky darken, trees sway and bend under the wind’s harsh breath, and the rain came down. Glorious! California has been in a drought for several years.

And though I prefer the sun’s warmth, I imagine California’s ground (hardened by drought) open its mouth in joy as it swallows much-needed water.

The rain falls and softens the hard dirt with its gentle pushing and prodding.

Gratitude fills my heart.

1. God, the Master Artist, can take what is broken and create something new.

The deserts in my past created in me a thirst and a longing for God. Though I prefer to not struggle, it is through those very struggles God enabled me to write this book. As I leaned on God’s strength to persevere, God filled my soul thirst with his love and presence.

2.  If you’ve ever felt pressured to “publish more,” then this post by Lore F. Wilbert is a must read. I read it and exhaled.

Let the words breathe.Lore Ferguson Wilbert

(Please feel free to use and share the graphic made by our daughter.)

I felt so much better about my slow process with God before I ever wrote a single word of  7 Days of Soul Care and afterward.

It’s okay to let our words marinate, simmer, and sit between only God and us.

Brené Brown—who has done extensive research on being “our authentic selves”—says that “courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” I would counter with this: Real courage starts with showing up, seeing God, and knowing he sees us—even if no one else ever does.Lore Ferguson Wilbert

3.  God led ministry always begins with prayer, seeking God.

I love how Julie Hulstein began ViBella Jewelry after a year of prayer and obedience in small ways, such as bringing cookies to a neighbor.

Julie’s prayer process resonates deeply with me because it’s a key theme of my book.

“. . . large callings on our lives often do not start as mountaintop moments. They are a small whisper into the everyday. Small acts of obedience that multiply and cast light where God directs our steps.” —Amy Breitmann

4.  Reminder to self: To grow in faith, you must step out of your comfort zone as God leads.

To that end, my short-term goal is to raise $500 (*) from the royalty sales of 7 Days of Soul Care for the work of International Justice Mission.

Yes, the problem of violence and slavery is huge, but all we can do is our part. Whatever it is.

But I trust God led me to this goal after prayer and my initial resistance because, in my pride, I didn’t want to look foolish. (God please forgive me.)

I hope to share in another post about my prayer process.

5. God gently reminds me: my job is to trust and follow, not figure out how it will happen.

And whatever happens, it will be clear God accomplished it, not me.

Thank you to each person on my launch team who agreed to go this adventure with me. You are God’s grace gift to me.

What did you learn in October?

What resonated with you from my list?

Thanks for brightening my day with your presence.

Linking with these encouraging friends: Holley, Jennifer.

(*) I have set up my Amazon payment in $100 increments. So I don’t get paid until the royalties reach $100. So after Amazon pays me, I then turn and donate to IJM’s rescue work. My husband and I support IJM monthly. I love IJM’s prayer focus as they serve; I had the honor of attending their first prayer evening in California.