"The choices we make change
the story of our life." ©
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Day Four of Seven
And now, without further adieu, here is the final installment of my U-Turn to the inception Words For The Journey…
Looking back to yesterday, I’ll once again repeat the last sentence of my previous post.
"On the first refrain, I rose to my feet, raised my hands, and knew in that moment that surrender was sweet."
The Bible study had ended, but without any hesitation I continued walking in the freedom of rest. The constancy of DO-ing was in my past, and that was where it was going to stay.
A couple of months later, I spoke with a couple of friends, who like me, enjoyed writing. None of us were pursuing publication at that point, but each of us was eager to learn more about our passion for words. I casually mentioned that we should meet and talk about writing. Maybe even help one another with getting published. Just a small gathering, maybe once every couple of weeks. If anyone else wanted to join us, they could. We could look over each other’s work, help with grammar, and whatever else writers do. We would have to look into that process.
I asked my friend, Linda, "Why don’t you start this group for us?" And she looked back at me and asked the very same thing.
"Sharen, I really feel like the Lord wants you to organize this thing." Hesitant, because of the Lord’s directed season of rest, I told her I would pray about it.
I repeated the same question to another friend who was a prolific journal writer. I had seen some of her journal entries. They were beautiful. Surely she would want to start the group. Instead of, "Sure, I’ll start it," Rhonda repeated the same thing as Linda. "Why don’t you start it. I’ll do all I can to help."
I asked one more friend, and again, there was that reply. "Why don’t you start a group, Sharen?"
Three people who I knew were capable of leading a small group like ours all said the very same thing. So I told each of them I would pray. And I did, fervently. After all, I had just been through a major life struggle with my DO-er attitude. I needed to be VERY clear whether or not the Lord desired this responsibility. His answer was quick.
I’ll do this thing. You just be obedient.
I took that message to my writing friends. "I’ll do it, but I want us to pray together about what this is supposed to look like. It’s not my group, but God’s, and that’s the way it will stay." They wholeheartedly agreed, and we met the following week in Linda’s breakfast nook. We had each honored a time of fasting before we met and were eager to pray and worship together. I brought a CD with me that included THE song that so moved me, based on Song of Solomon 2:10-14.
The same lyrics that touched me now moved my friends, and all three of us spent time honoring and praising our Lord together. Each of us felt like we were headed in the right direction, but really didn’t have a plan so to speak. I asked each of the ladies to think about a name that might fit our group, and told them we should have a mission statement, a vision for our group and our purpose for existing. When I went home that afternoon, I expected to continue in prayer while the other ladies thought about everything we needed. I didn’t expect to be the one the Lord gave our name through.
The name, Words For The Journey Christian Writers Guild came to me almost as soon as I arrived home. I called Linda and asked her what she thought. She concurred.
And Father, what about a Scripture? I went to www.biblegateway and looked up the word "journey." Luke 11:6 was the verse that immediately brought an understanding of the natural outflow of our group. Our prayer was to mentor writers by offering tools and encouragement by way of sharing whatever resources and knowledge we had available. "A friend of mine on a journey has come to me…" fit our purpose well. The Vision Statement and Purpose each followed easily.
Linda, Rhonda and I met again to pray and discuss the time and place of our meetings. We asked our church if they would provide a space for us. The staff of our fellowship, WoodsEdge Community Church, welcomed us, providing a room for us to meet weekly. One month later, on September 19, 2003, Words For The Journey Christian Writers Guild held its grand opening meeting. Through the course of more prayer, we also opened a monthly meeting at Barnes and Noble for those who can't make daytime meetings.
If you’re wondering about this business of my tendency toward DO-ing…
I knew, and believe you will understand (if you don’t already) the difference of DO-ing for doing sake versus stepping out in faith on a path clearly prepared before you.
Thank You, Lord for allowing U-Turns. Especially this one – The U-Turn from chaotic, frenzied busyness to the fulfillment of Your business.
Tomorrow, I’ll talk about the establishment of our newest chapter, Words For The Journey – Rocky Mountain Region. Here’s a little peek… I had no idea my U-Turn was still in process. Stay tuned…
Signing off for now... Sharen Watson