In which I “get” to write about myself
Today’s blog is part of the #mywritingprocess blog tour, in which I have the opportunity, through responding to four questions, to write about why I write. This is a new and somewhat uncomfortable experience for me. Before I dive into that, I want to thank Heather Mertens for the invitation to this short journey.
I was first encouraged by Heather Mertens’ blog, 40Year Wanderer, when I read her Open Letter To Christians. In it, she lovingly exhorts us Christians to stop lashing out in anger and hatred toward one another, particularly when it comes to politics. I couldn’t agree with her more. In that Letter, Heather asks,
“Would I say what I say to others to God’s face? Would I post that image and quote on His wall should He choose to have one? Would I write that thought and debate that way on His blog?” These are questions we should be asking ourselves.”
I continue to follow Heather because she shares her story honestly, transparently, as a work in progress, as God’s masterpiece, through love and encouragement. Besides, she’s one of those laid back women who is a freelance media specialist, helped start a private Christian school, is a co-founder of 7Cubed.org (a Christian site for artists of all kinds), and is currently writing two (yes 2) books. (Whew, did I say laid back?) Please wander over and join her journey. You, too, will be encouraged by her.
1) What am I working on?
For the past four years, I’ve been writing Branches* Family Collection, a series of age-appropriate devotional studies for families with 5-12 year-olds. Each age level takes a small but significant portion of God’s Word and illustrates how they are reoccurring themes throughout the Bible. As parents and children read, respond to the questions and do the activities together, they will see the threads that connect the Bible into a giant, woven pattern that is the beautiful tapestry of God’s restoration for all of creation through Jesus from Genesis to Revelation.
2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Each devotional workbook is for the entire family. It’s written to do together. In each section, parents and children are asked to look up Scripture in biblical order so the content of the Bible becomes second nature.
They learn together through spiritual disciplines of Scripture memory, life application, prayer, and spending time with God.
3) Why do I write what I do?
Jesus transformed every aspect of my life. The purpose the prose and poetry of my blog is to pass along the love, peace, mercy and grace that I have, to encourage others, and light up corners of darkness. My prayer is Branches will serve the same purpose, to a wider audience of Christian families.
4) How does my writing process work?
It’s always God’s agenda, His schedule, and the Holy Spirit’s words.
I usually spend morning time with God (and a strong cup of coffee), and write in my prayer journal from 6:30-7:30. I blog or write Branches from 7:30 until around 2:00 when my brain stops firing on all cylinders. Afterwards, I do my best to catch up on comments and blogs I follow, unless I catch a second wind, which is, um, never. So, that’s it about me. Now, about –
Well, I was supposed to choose three people to roll this blog forward next week – my mistake – I chose four. (I’m not great at following rules.) Four followers of Jesus. Four people who acknowledge, like me, they are works in progress. Four people who are not just admirers of Jesus, but committed followers; people who allow Jesus to interrupt, interfere with and wreck their daily lives. In alphabetical order by last name they are:
Jennifer Anderson I Give God All The Glory
In Jennifer’s own words, “I am a daughter of God, servant of the Lord, wife to a patient husband, and mama of two forgiving boys. God has placed these 3 men in my life needfully so. I thank Him for them every day. And like so many of the Lord’s children, I am a messy work-in-progress on a journey to reclaim and renew my life in Christ. It took me 34 years to learn that when nothing else works, God does!” Amen to that!
Christie Lambert so beloved
Christie is a downhome, Southern girl, wife of a worship leader, mom of three kids, and delightful, honest, and refreshingly welcome voice of love, curiosity and wonder. You’ll definitely want to visit her online porch where she offers sweet tea of Jesus’ words that fill your glass with grace and mercy.
Paul Robinson paulrobinsonwrites
Paul writes outside the box because he understands that’s where God resides. He writes about unity, love and forgiveness. Paul also ministers to men and teens struggling with addiction to pornography at xxxchurch.com – folks that Jesus might have embraced with an extended hand and heart. There, he writes of restoration, isolation and the healing, grace and mercy Christ offers the sick and wounded.
Jeaneen Thomas The journaled journey devotion’s café
Jeaneen writes, “I’m trying to find my footing in establishing a real relationship with my heavenly family. Through my prayers, I’m trying to establish one. I’m asking Him to help. I’m reading His words and I’m asking Him to let me see Him. And I’m simply journaling the journey.” Right along with the rest of us.
Please be sure to visit these wonderful people. They are light and salt and possess the heart of Jesus. And please come back on Friday for the continuation of my Sermon on the Mount series: Blessed are the Humble.
*Branches is named for John 15:5: “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”