Before I left for the ACFW Conference on Wednesday, part of a Bible verse played through my mind continually:
"Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:8
According to the Internet, there are 13 verses that speak of this concept. I had no idea what this would mean in reference to my conference, but I had a feeling I'd find out. So I tucked it away in a safe place for quick recollection.
Can I be honest here for a minute over our proverbial pizza? Two days before I was supposed to leave for conference, I blurted to my husband that I didn't want to go anymore. It's the most ridiculous and world's most irrational thing in hindsight, and I didn't mean it for one second. But there were all kinds of last-minute curveballs. I had close-call issues with my design and printing. I was sleep-deprived. Work was crazy. Unexpected finances kept popping up. I was a little hesitant to leave my daughter -- not because she wouldn't have been able to handle it like a rockstar, but because I'd been enjoying my time with her so much lately.
But the biggest deal was that I feared I'd lost my writing mojo. I took a month-long-plus-change sabbatical from writing because I was frustrated at the amount of time I spent staring at a blank page. I needed to reevaluate. So I felt disconnected from the writing community and didn't know what would happen when I plunged back in. My instinct usually tells me to dip a toe in at first. But there is no such thing as easing into something when it comes to the ACFW. Not really.
"The Lord will personally go ahead of you..."
I genuinely believe that God went before me at the conference and ordained meetings with fellow writers, shaped my words where my own mental capacity would have failed me, and surrounded my writer friends and me with protection. Those words from the Bible became so much more real to me than a blanket reassurance I'd repeat to convince myself that I couldn't ruin His will for my writing no matter how badly I flubbed a pitching appointment :)
Are you facing a huge event in your career like a conference? A personal plot twist? An unexpected financial woe? No matter what your uncertainty looks like, know that where you waver, God is constant. He won't forsake you when you need Him. He will go before you to soften hearts, fill you with bravery, and help you give Him the control He needs in exchange for peace about the situation.
He's sort of wonderful like that.
When has God gone before you in an uncertain situation?
Laurie Tomlinson is a wife and mom from Tulsa, Oklahoma, who enjoys stories of grace in the beautiful mess. She is a member of My Book Therapy and the American Christian Fiction Writers. Her work is represented by Rachel Kent of Books & Such Literary and received the Genesis Award in 2013 (Contemporary) and 2014 (Romance).
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