The Journey of a Calling

Prayer is such an integral part of our relationship with the Lord. It is not only good for those we pray for, it’s good for us and keeps us in fellowship with Him. Read on as Wade shares how his journey of prayer led to his journey of writing.

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Called to Write
by Wade Webster

How does God get a book written that nobody thought of writing?

write-593333_640He gives it to a new writer who doesn’t have a clue he’s writing a book to begin with.

That’s the genesis of the book 100 Prayers Of a Writer. It began when one door closed and another one opened.

Talking to God has come easily to me from childhood because I was saved so young I don’t remember not being born-again. I took advantage of being raised on a farm on the edge of nowhere by taking long walks talking to Jesus about various things in my life.

Fast-forward to eight years ago when God surprised me with a call to write. I thought it was only going to be fiction at first. God had other plans that He didn’t tell me about.

Knowing that public speaking would be a part of the writing equation I took advantage of an opportunity to pray before the adult fellowship at my church on a rotating basis. Many people said my conversational style blessed them. The leadership of the class apparently felt otherwise. They asked me to step down, which I did.

Shortly after that an online writing group I was in had a member who began weekly prayers for us. When her life became too hectic she offered the position to anyone in the group who felt so led. I walked through that door with the stipulation that if my prayers became weakly someone would tell me to stop.

I soon discovered people in the group who I didn’t even know were in the group when they sent me emails telling me how a certain prayer touched them.

After a year I realized I was accumulating enough prayers to make a book. The main organization in charge of our group decided to switch to a Facebook group instead of an prayer-1308663_640email loop halfway through the second year. I asked them to keep us going a bit longer. They did.

I completed the last few prayers after they closed the group to come up with the number of prayers I wanted for the book.

Each chapter of the book follows a list found in the Bible. The Fruit of the Spirit is prayed through one ingredient at a time. The Hall of Faith chapter was eye-opening to complete, as was the 23rd Psalm. Solomon’s Times and Seasons from Ecclesiastes 3 made a good section, too.

The writing group I was in focused on children’s books, so making the prayers approach from the perspective of a child coming before their heavenly Father was quite commonsense. It also made for quite the visual experience to read. It’s the way Jesus told His followers to come to God in Matthew 18:1-4.

Anyone unsure of how to come before God in prayer will gain a fresh perspective from these prayers. They’re written in a way that the reader is talking directly to God. If read out loud you actually are.

This simple act of obedience that disciplined me to come before God weekly for a group of Christian writers became a book by surprise. It surprised me anyway. God knew what He was doing all along.

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100 PRAYERS OF A WRITER COVERWhat is prayer? Prayer is a conversation with God.

What does God expect in your prayer? God wants you to pour out your heart to Him.

These prayers are not meant to be memorized, but experienced. This collection of prayers began as a weekly offering to the American Christian Fiction Writers’ children’s fiction email loop. 100 PRAYERS OF A WRITER combines Wade Webster’s two greatest passions: talking to his Heavenly Father and writing. If your prayer life needs a boost, these prayers will give you the spiritual lift you’re looking for. Experience a depth and honesty that only comes from a lifetime walk with God through Jesus Christ. Although these prayers were originally written to writers, everybody will grow in their understanding of their relationship with the Creator of the universe. People curious about how Christians approach God will have their eyes opened to what makes us tick. Enter the throne room of God as Jesus tells us to–as little children. Leave the same throne room with renewed hope and encouragement. Christianity wasn’t meant to be a rote religion, but a living relationship. Your Father longs for your attention.

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Wade front-on pictureWade Webster lives in Plano, Texas with his best friend Jesus Christ. He attended Grace Bible College sometime in the last century and derives most of his income from driving trucks.

You can follow the link on his blog to buy an autographed copy of his book at http://wadewebster.com or on Amazon.

 

 

Let’s talk about this: Wade shared how God called him to write but had an unexpected path for him. Have you discovered your calling yet? How has God led you on the journey of your calling? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Sidelined

We all make plans for our lives. We have ideas of what we want to do, what we want to be, and how our lives should go. But what happens if our plans aren’t the Lord’s? Bonnie Leon shares with us her experience…and how God’s plans led to her calling.

But first, a giveaway! Bonnie is graciously giving away a paperback copy of her book, To Dance With Dolphins. To enter, leave a comment below. Enjoy this piece from the back cover:

To-Dance-with-Dolphins-Front-Cover-2-197x300Twenty-two-year-old Claire Murray has suffered from a mysterious disease for years. Her social circle has shrunk to a small support group for people with chronic illness and disability. But what if life could be about more than doctors, pain, and medications?

Claire and three others—old grouch Tom, hippy-holdout Willow, and moody Taylor—hatch plans for a cross-country trip to swim with the dolphins in Florida. Only a day into the trip, they unexpectedly need help. And who happens to be hitchhiking along the highway but a young, good-looking loner named Sean Sullivan? However, the last thing he wants is to be harnessed to a bunch of ailing travelers.

Though the journey proves difficult, following God’s plan might be even harder. Will they find the courage to follow their dreams and dare to live again?

And a fun, pre-devo note: Jennifer Slattery’s next release, Breaking Free, a novel that is getting some great early reviews (read those HERE), is available for pre-order! You can get breakingfree_n1664109that HERE. You can read a free, 33-page excerpt HERE.

Sidelined? by Bonnie Leon

The day after I wrote a blog about my new and healthier perspective on being “sidelined” I had to leave church because I couldn’t stop crying about the life I’d lost.  Something small set me off—the introduction of a pastor search team.

girl-517555_640Sometimes it doesn’t take much.

I don’t want to be part of the search team, but I do want to be part of my church … the way I once was. My disabilities have benched me.

I couldn’t stop the tears so I left church. Once in my car, the tears turned to sobs. What was going on? I prayed and cried some more.  I decided it couldn’t be hormones—I don’t have any of those left. I knew the culprit something I thought I’d worked through—my feelings about being sidelined.

Evidently those feelings were not resolved.

June 11, 1991 a log truck tipped over on a corner and hit my van. I was alive but at thirty-nine my life had been permanently altered. We, my body and I, have been through a lot. We’ve been through numerous battles—won some, lost some.

After years of struggle I finally reached a place where I could be involved in my church and community. And I knew my boundaries.

My life was full—family, baseball games, volleyball games, basketball, track and football. I made it to nearly every competition for my children and grandchildren. I relished the concerts and parent nights. I taught Bible studies, led women’s ministry, worked alongside my husband in small group ministries. I also taught at writing conferences and shared my heart with women’s groups. It was a privilege and a joy.

In recent years all that has changed. I’ve had to curtail most ministries and special activities. It is a heartache, a disappointment.

I’ve been “sidelined”.

The word, sidelined, is not accurate. But there’s a voice in my head that tells me it is. Until last Sunday I thought I’d shut off the lying voice.

word-907382_640My life matters to me and others. It doesn’t look like it once did, but I have a lot to give. People love me and count on me. I have prayers to say, hugs to give away, and love to share. I am a friend, a mother, a wife, a sister, a daughter, one who stands shoulder to shoulder with those I love. It is a precious calling.

And I have books to write. I even wrote a novel about this topic. To Dance With Dolphins is a story about a unique group of friends who live with disability. They taught me about the possibility of finding hope and joy even in the midst of disappointment.

We never arrive, at least not this side of heaven. Insecurities and struggles have a way of returning and taunting. But they can only have as much power as we give them. God is bigger and more powerful than all of it. Everything is possible. If we stand with God, if our hope is in Him, and if we surrender our will to His we will discover lost hopes and dreams, new paths and callings.

There is a lot I do not understand in this life, but I do know this—I have not been sidelined. And neither have you. God uses all who are willing to listen and hear and see the possibilities.

I am disabled, and my life is rich.

The Lord will never sideline us, we can only do that to ourselves.

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Bonnie Leon is the author of twenty-one novels, including the merecently released To Dance With Dolphins, the popular Alaskan Skies and bestselling The Journey of Eleven Moons.

She enjoys speaking for women’s groups and teaching at writing seminars and conventions. These days, her time is filled with writing, being a grandmother and relishing precious time with her aged mother.

Bonnie and her husband, Greg, live in Southern Oregon. They have three grown children and eight grandchildren.

You can find Bonnie at https://www.bonnieleon.com, on Facebookhttps://www.bonnieleon.blogspot.com, on Twitter, and Pinterest.

Let’s talk about this. Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” We’re not promised that our plans will work, but we are promised that the Lord’s plans will be His best for us; we only need to trust Him.

Are you able to relate to Bonnie’s story? Has God ever changed your path? If so, how did you react? What helped you through those changes? Share your thoughts in the comments below.