The disciples went forth and preached the gospel, while the Lord worked with them, confirming the word through accompanying signs. Mark 16:20
Barnes’ Notes on the Bible- By miracles; by removing obstacles; by supporting them; and by giving the gospel success and making it effectual to saving men.
In a bundle of nerves, my daughter could hardly contain herself in the car. We were riding to a debate tournament and she was competing for the first time. The closer we got to the school, the more anxious she became. She struggled to find where her courage would come from.
As we talked about the logistics of the competition, how proud I was of her for being there, and the courage it took for her as a nine year old child to speak in front of a room of people, I centered her thoughts on God. The Holy Spirit came down in that car and began to season my words.
I explained to her that if God has sent you on mission, that it cannot fail. I explained to her why that was a factual impossibility. That if God is perfect, the controller and creator of the universe, that if He is the one who sent us, we could only succeed.
“Mommy”, she said, “Are you a writer?”
I paused. That question seemingly stumped me as it came out of nowhere. My own advice was coming back to challenge me.
“I mean are you going to write a book?” she said
I told her I had planned on it. That I was writing a collection of devotions, and that the book was currently writing itself. I told her I planned on publishing it. Even those words made me uneasy.
She smiled widely, “Really? Like a real book! Oh my God!”
Apparently her and God were having a conversation without me. I was confused on how my advice on impossible failure had turned into whether I was a writer who would be publishing a book. I could not steer my way out of her questions, but her nerves dissipated in the interim, and her smile stayed with her as we neared the debate tournament.
I didn’t think much of that conversation until reading today’s scripture.
The gospel is preached everyday, but as we preach it, it looks different on all of us. Sometimes it is with words, most times it is only with presence. But it is also in artwork and smiles and yes, books.
I couldn’t and still don’t feel comfortable calling myself a writer. I struggle with that. Even though the Lord birthed this series, I feel as if I am simply a pass through.
I ate my own words yesterday
The truth is that if it is God given you cannot fail. And I am not talking about failure in the worldly sense. Success in God’s kingdom is the salvation of souls. We may never know if what we did or said brought someone to Christ, but He does.
I am like Mary preaching Do what He tells you to do! Don’t make it anymore than that.
Don’t question the mission, just go on it
After some thought and before we pulled into the school, my daughter asked what the title of my book was going to be.
“Defining 365”, I said.
“What does that mean?”
“Like a definition,” I said.
She looked perplexed.
Like God. He is the author. He writes our story. He defines our days.
A lightbulb went off in her head. You could see it glowing. She didn’t say one word, but by the look in her eye I knew she understood.
“Wow mom, I can’t wait to read it!” she said.
And that is the moment I was able to call myself a writer.
Help us to define our mission and cooperate in your salvation story. Show us signs of confirmation, perform miracles and wonders and awe us, so that we know you are with us, guiding us in the right direction. Align our paths and let us hear your voice so that we know that we are walking in the way that we should. Remove obstacles and give us gospel success, making your word effective in and through us in the way that you chose us to carry it.
In Jesus Name,