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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A few years ago I sat in a small group of women, watching a DVD teaching of The Dream Giver, taught by the author Bruce Wilkinson.

I was like many women I have met over the years. In the busyness of being a wife, mother and employee, I had buried my dream. Oh ... it would try and surface every once in awhile, and then life would stamp it down.

The stamping came in thoughts like this:

There's no time for that ...
There's no money for that ...
You aren't good enough ...
Other are better than you ...
If you don't try, you can't fail ...
Even if you do try, you won't make it over the hurdles ...

And on, and on.

I sat on that couch that day and listened while Bruce spoke about how we hide our dreams in our hearts. Many times we protect them there for so many years, that it's almost painful to share them with anyone. As I heard those words, my heart started to pound. I couldn't contain the tears as they coursed down my cheeks. Yes, I had a dream that was painful to consider because it seemed so out of reach.

How could someone like me ever get a book published???

But God wouldn't let that dream die. In fact, He had been strategically placing me in situations to make that dream a reality. All that was left was for me to believe that if the dream was from God, He would make it happen - I just needed to keep putting one foot in front of the other and NOT give up.

Almost five years later my first book, and four co-authored Bible studies were published. I'm now working on my second book, which I'll tell you about tomorrow.

But today, I want to speak to those of you who have a dream to write ... a dream that is so tender and precious that you may never have even shared it with anyone before. And if that's you, I want to personally invite you to attend She Speaks - the Proverbs 31 Writers and Speakers Conference.

It's an amazing place to pursue your dream, be equipped in all practical matters of writing and even have the opportunity to present your ideas to people who are in a position to help you get published. You can even take workshops on speaking

I'm the director of the writer's track and I can tell you that this year will be better than ever. We have great workshops, more publishers than last year and amazing opportunities to meet with others who share your dream.

It's held in Concord, North Carolina (just outside of Charlotte) on June 20-22. I believe it will be a great investment in your dreams, as well as an investment in advancing the kingdom of God.

I realize this idea might be very scary to some of you. And here's a promise. I promise that you when you come to She Speaks, we (the members of the Proverbs 31 team) will care for your dream tenderly and carefully. We will love you like a sister in Christ. We will pray for you. And we will hold your hand if you get scared. We are really good at that because we need to hold each other's hands a lot.

And I'll start right now by inviting you to send me any questions you have. I can be reached at editor@proverbs31.org.

In His Love,


MrsJoeB said...

Very encouraging. My dream...its knowing for sure it's God's dream because all the excuses you noted in this blog I can relate to. Prayer, prayer, prayer...that will lead me to the dream I think God has for me. And hopefully to this conference!!
God Bless!
In His Graces~Pamela

Amy Wyatt said...

I am already registered for the conference and am so excited to attend again. I came last year and it was truly wonderful. Last year, I didn't really approach/spend time with any of the speakers because I was a little intimidated, but after reading all of your post and meeting some of you since then, I am so excited to spend time with you in person. Thanks for being such an encourager.

Michelle said...

Thanks for the personal invitation and encouragement. I do have a dream to write. Your post gave me the final push to register for the conference. I am so excited! I can't wait to meet you and the rest of the Proverbs 31 team.

Carol said...

I am planning on coming to She Speaks! I can't wait to meet you in person. We'll have to grab some McDonald's, even if its just the yogurt parfait. (Sadly, I know the whole menu and calorie counts.)

How funny that you posted about that book. Our Sunday School class did the Dream Giver about two years ago. Our teacher had us raise our hands and share our dreams (if we were willing). It was the first time I had admitted in public that I wanted to be published. I kind of surprised myself. Yet, here I am - writing and ...getting published!! Thank you again for the opportunity to be in P31. You really are helping to fulfill a dream God has given me. I am truly appreciative.
Carol :)

Digging for Pearls said...

I too have that dream to be published. I presented a book proposal (which they took along back to the publisher) last year at She Speaks and still have not heard back from it.

I would love to come again this year and am praying that God will somehow provide away. Our finances are so tight that it seems pretty hopeless. I pray God either provides a way for me to come or that He takes the strong desire away.

Celly B said...

I always have had the dream of writing a book. Lately, I feel that God is pusing me to teach and speak. However, I am so afraid that these desires may stem more from my own pride than from God's will. Other than testing your desires through scripture (I have a whole notebook full of verses about teaching, speaking, and writing), how do you handle the pride issue?
Also, how do you handle balancing writing with putting family first?

Glynnis Whitwer said...

Thanks for the questions about pride. This has been an area God has addressed in my life for a long time. Many years ago, I told God to do whatever it took to remove pride from my life - and God answered that prayer. It seems I'm always in a place of great need where I know I can't do it on my own. Or God allows something to happen that reminds me I'm pretty human. So my answer is just ask God, then hang on to Him when He answers - because it's not always easy or pretty.

About putting family first, I schedule time for writing around family time. I do it just like I schedule any important job or appointment. Also, when I have a deadline for writing, I break it down into how many words I need to write a week. Then I know when I'm done, and don't feel the pressure to be writing when I'm with family. Hope that helps!

Amy L Brooke said...

I'm praying and hoping and working towards She Speaks. To cover Christmas I got a pt job at Barnes and Noble. They couldn't keep me on, but said they would call me to cover shifts (sales drop way down in Jan and Feb.). This week I've gotten to work twice and all the money is going into She Speaks. We'll see. (Amazingly, I've even resisted buying any books!)

Anonymous said...

This is encouraging. my dream is not to write but greatly moved to trust God to bring my dream to pass and not let it die.