Monday, December 9, 2013

Pursuit for Publication? God Is Able by Priscilla Shirer, and A Giveaway!

We all know that this road to publication is difficult.
And I have learned the hard way that no matter how much I pray, how much I believe in my work, or believe that God will answer my prayers the way I want Him to, the outcome really does not depend on what I do.
Priscilla Shirer
If you read my post last week, you'll know that I am going through a time of stepping back, re-centering my heart on God and not my own desires or pursuits. So, when I was given the chance to review Priscilla Shirer's book, God Is Able, I must say that I went into it with a bit of hesitation. I wasn't sure if I wanted to read anything besides God's Scriptures. After all, I wanted this time to be one of  focus only on God...nobody's opinion of Him, nor temptation that might come in a self-help type book to apply the mantra that if I did this...then I could get God to do so and so...

With a guarded heart, I began to read God is Able. And after just the introduction, I felt my walls break down and my heart receive God's truth pouring out from this small book in the most God-focused way. Priscilla's style is simple yet wise, and gripping with vivid analogies. Her examples are down-to-earth with glimpses of God's handiwork in ordinary, day-to-day living. Instead of outlining ways to satiate my desire in a self-help fashion, she dug deep into Scripture, took me by the shoulders like a loving friend, and turned me away from my circumstance and toward God and ALL HIS ABILITY to use my circumstance for so much more than I would hope.

The book's entire structure is based on significant points made in Paul's doxology in Ephesians 3:20, 21. I've color-coded the subject of each of the phrases dedicated to entire chapters in the book:
"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen."
With exploration of original language, historical context, and true life situations, Priscilla presents the fullness of these words that do nothing less than glorify God, elaborate on His love for us, and humble us before His perfect will. The book reminds us to push our circumstance aside in comparison to grounding our faith in the God who goes "exceeding abundantly beyond what we ask or think". 

One of the greatest points that met me right where I was at on this pursuit of publication is:

"But whether or not God CHOOSES to do something is a question of His sovereignty, not His ability. Whether or not He Will do it is His business. But believing that He CAN--that's our business." pg 62.

Do you truly believe that God is able in your present circumstance? Do you truly believe that He wants to go beyond what we ask or think, and are you ready to surrender completely to Him no matter the outcome? It is hard to think that this waiting game might end without publication, but if I remain grounded in my faith, it is NOT because God can't do it, it is because He chooses not to, AND, He has something in the works that will be above and beyond what I could even imagine--with or without a contract. How exciting...and freeing! As Priscilla says on pg 140,

"...ultimately, our lives are all and completely about Him. 
We exist today for His fame...For His praise and His glory."

The outcome of this pursuit, this writing for Him, really only means something if He's "gettin' Him some glory when He acts on our behalf." pg 140.

So why in the world do I get so antsy? It's about time to stop giving into my fleshy want (which will never be satisfied with earthly things), and start surrendering to the Spirit's nudging (which will always lead to God and true satisfaction). Embracing ALL God has for me, isn't really about what's for me, but ALL about what He wills to bring Him the glory. And who am I to tell God what that may be? I can ask, and pray, but trust that He knows the best way to answer.

Priscilla's tiny red book drew me to God's loving arms with security and peace in the wait. I close the book, craving more time with Priscilla. Her voice is conversational and down-to-earth, and her heart reflects God's truth. If you are struggling with publication, or perhaps something more pressing in your life, God is Able will draw you close to God and to a faith beyond all circumstance, with a mind and heart set on nobody's glory but His!

I could list a whole book full of quotes from God Is Able, but instead, why don't you leave a comment and get entered in a drawing for the book to read them for yourself?? Also, tell me which section of the doxology appeals to you most in your present circumstance?

Angie Dicken first began writing fiction as a creative outlet during the monotonous, mothering days of diapers and temper tantrums. She is passionate to impress God's love on women regardless of their background or belief. This desire serves as a catalyst for Angie's fiction, which weaves salvation and grace themes across historical cultures and social boundaries. Angie is an ACFW member and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency.


Karen @ a house full of sunshine said...

This: "Do you truly believe that God is able in your present circumstance? Do you truly believe that He wants to go beyond what we ask or think, and are you ready to surrender completely to Him no matter the outcome?"

Yep - this is the line for me today. Letting my heart steep in these words and make them truly mine. Thanks, Ang.

AmyB said...

"Beyond all that we ask or think..." That part truly comforts me. In a situation where I am confused, my heart hurts and I pray, beg God to fix the situation the way that I think it should be solved. But the truth is, He has a better plan, a better solution, a better way beyond that which I can even ask or think. My job is to keep praying, and to trust that His will will go forth, and that His love for me is stronger than anything. Thanks for the encouragement and the giveaway!

Shana said...

"...all that we ask or THINK..." I've been working on my thoughts and turning them toward Him rather than the "issue" of the moment. It is a work in progress, for sure. I would love to win the giveaway. Thank you for posting this great review! I will check back to see if I have been selected as a winner. :)

Angie Dicken said...

Take those words, my friend. This book is for so much bigger than pursuing publication...I think I will need to read it over and over as I journey on through life!!
Love ya!

Angie Dicken said...

I do the same I grow, I realize exactly why prayer is so important. It keeps God in the proper perspective for us believers...He is SO much bigger and wiser than anything we can hope for!
I'll enter you in the drawing for sure! Have a great day.

Angie Dicken said...

Thanks for stopping by, and I will enter you in the drawing. Aren't we all a work in progress? It's so great to remember to take your eyes off the issue and focus on God, sometimes it's so hard for me to do, but I always find His peace when I do it!

Joanne Sher said...

"exceedingly abundantly beyond" - my wishes, dreams, and prayers are small - no matter how big they may seem to me! And He can do it. Must trust Him in the big AND small - and the exceedingly abundantly beyond.

Please enter me - this book sounds WONDERFUL.

Embrace said...

Angie, I couldn't agree more with your words of encouragement. God is able and for that I am learning to be more thankful each day.
The part I love about that verse is the "exceedingly abundantly beyond". I loved how Priscilla explained the word "beyond" in the book. It helped me to see the reason this word is so critical to the verse itself.
I do not need to be entered in the draw because I read the book and I also have a giveaway of it on my blog if anyone wants to double their chances.
Thanks Angie

Angie Dicken said...

Me too, Jodi! I loved that part of the book!! So glad that you've had the chance to read it...and what great timing to have the giveaway offered in more than one place! Thanks for stopping by!

Angela said...

"to do exceedingly abundantly beyond all that we think or ask..."
This reminds me that God is stronger than any problem we face.

Sherrinda Ketchersid said...

The line that jumped out at Karen is what struck me as well. This book definitely sounds like something my heart could use! Thank you, Angie, for a most beautiful review.

Rachelle O'Neil said...

I think the part about God being able "to do exceedingly abundantly beyond" all our plans and wishes really hit me the most out of that. Desiring to fellowship with God hasn't been my strongest desire lately, and I really want to change that. Knowing that He wants and can do so much more for me than I could even imagine is incredibly encouraging. Thanks for the giveaway! The book looks really neat!

tarter95 said...

from Whom all blessings flow...we are so blessed in this land today. I want to keep this foremost in my thoughts. I would love this book.

Angie Dicken said...

Thanks Sherrinda!
And, Angela, Bluebelle, and tarter95...will put you in the drawing!

Angie Dicken said...

Hey Shana!
You won the drawing! Email us your address to the Writer's Alley email in the right column, and we'll get the book sent to you!