Everyone’s Story warmly welcomes this week’s guest, Sally Chambers. Sally and I are fellow Elk Lake Publishing Inc. authors, but I had the pleasure of reading Sally’s The Stonekeepers before signing with Elk Lake. What a great story! It’s been fun getting to know Sally since that point. A caring and sweet woman, I hope you’ll pull up a fave chair this week and take a couple of minutes to sample Sally’s excerpt, read her uplifting words, and try for her Giveaway. We’re looking forward to chatting with you.
Sally is offering 2 randomly chosen commenters each 1 copy of the The Stonekeepers. 1 winner will receive 1 print copy; 1 winner a Kindle edition. The winners will be announced here on Friday, January20th between 5-6 PM EST.
** For Giveaways: it’s not necessary to insert your private email information within comments.
Excerpt from The Stonekeepers:
Yes, You Can by Sally Chambers
“I can’t, Lord—there are plenty of others who can.”
You do it.
But, I can’t make a major change like this.
Yes. You can.
I’m 44. It’s crazy. I just can’t.
Yes. You can. I am with you.
In my office, elbows on my desk, chin cradled in my hands, mired in doubt, my faith fades like the flood of red rays from the setting sun pouring through the window. In front of me, an agent contract from a large insurance company . . . and a pen.
Gideon’s doubt in Judges 6, reminds me of times I’ve doubted—myself, God, others. My doubts are far less important than Gideon’s, but they sure follow a similar pattern.
Gideon’s story (from The Living Bible, rewritten a bit) goes like this:
For seven years, the people of Israel were cruelly treated by their enemies. It reached a point when the Israelites “took to the mountains, living in caves and dens”—they hid and began to “cry out to the Lord for help.” Gideon was there with other fearful Israelites when the Lord spoke to him.
You do it.
The Lord, who knew Gideon’s heart as He does ours, turned to Gideon, “I will make you strong! Go and save Israel from the Midianites! I am sending you!”
But, I can’t do it.
And in came Gideon’s doubts, questions, and argument, “Sir, how can I save Israel? My family is the poorest in the whole tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least thought of in the entire family!” I can’t!
Oh, but yes you can.
The Lord said to Gideon, “But I, Jehovah, will be with you!
I’ll need proof.
Gideon, still doubting, said to the Lord, “If it is really true . . . then I’ll need you to do some miracle to prove it . . . so please stay here until I get a present for you.”
All right, I will stay.
The Lord, gracious and merciful, reassured him. “I’ll stay here until you return.”
Gideon went home, prepared meat, bread, and broth, returned, and presented them to the Lord.
Now I need you to do something.
The Lord instructed Gideon “Place the meat and bread on that rock and pour the broth over them.”
I will . . .
“Gideon followed these instructions.”
The Lord touched the meat and bread and fire consumed them.
Ah, You will help me.
His faith strengthened, the Lord with him, step-by-step, Gideon “. . . did as the Lord commanded.”
Our Lord is as gracious and patient with us as He was with Gideon when we doubt or cast a fleece before him or want to run the other way. Whether we’re writers or mothers or teachers or realtors or engineers or any of myriad other things we do, we want assurance we’re in God’s will and have his help.
I sounded like Gideon when after fifteen years of working in the insurance industry for others, I felt the nudge to do it myself. And again, after a strong nudge to write and submit devotions, articles, Sunday school take-home papers, and drama. And again, when I felt the strong assurance that I should write novels—suspense novels—like The Stonekeepers, released in May of 2015, and a second novel that’s already interested my agent and publisher.
Have you experienced moments of doubt when something you’ve worked hard to achieve becomes an exciting, scary reality?
Never say never. Pray. Listen. Believe. Do the work. You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. (Philippians 4:13 NKJV.)
Just as with Gideon, God is always with us, never leaves or forsakes us. Simply love Him with all your heart and soul and mind and strength, ask Him, thank Him, include Him in all you do.
Two favorite mini-prayers you might enjoy too: Jesus, please come and be with me. Awaken me to your presence. Jesus please come and sit with me. Guide me into your truth.
Yes, you can!
John Oxenham wrote in Bees in Amber–
Not for one single day
Can I discern my way,
But this I surely know—
Who gives the day,
Will show the way.
So I securely go.
Sally’s Ah-hahs To Tweet:
Author @sallychambers2 Speaks Up! on Everyone’s Story: Yes, You Can (especially when God says so). (Tweet This)
How did @sallychambers2 react when she felt a nudge to write a novel? (Tweet This)
Win @sallychambers2’s #BookGiveaway of The Stonekeepers. #ChristFic (Tweet This)
Sally Chambers and her husband, Jerry, live in sunny, sub-tropical Florida, happy to have their two married children living within driving distance. Their grandchildren and great grandchildren visit from the UK and Colorado! Since retiring from her career in insurance, she’s focused on her love of writing.
An author of Christian fiction, Sally enjoys writing for young women, creating suspenseful, faith-filled stories with a dash of romance. She was a finalist in the American Christian Fiction Writer’s inaugural First Impressions Contest and has won awards for her poetry and short stories.
Sally loves walking on the beach or anywhere there’s a trail, enjoys reading to children, writing, reviewing and editing for writer friends, has fun taking photos with her iPhone, and reading, especially mystery, suspense, adventure.
Places to connect with Sally:
I want to thank you–readers, friends, family, and fellow authors–who have helped me to get where I am today (rejoicing each milestone as they come). Please stop by this Sunday, January 15th, for fun, sharing, and Giveaways!! Hope to see you Party Page
Sally and I look forward to your comments.