At the beginning of this year, an email popped up in my inbox that I didn’t expect. A Christian publisher who I greatly respect had taken notice of one of my article’s and asked about my interest in writing a book on the topic of relationships. Anyone who has known me for a long time knows that being an author has been a life long dream since the 4th grade. My heart beat fast and I was ecstatic. I told my husband and my family and closest friends.
I got back in touch with the publisher with an idea that they liked and I moved forward with working on the proposal. Jeremiah watched the kids for me on the weekends while I’d go to our local coffee shop to hammer out the first few sample chapters. I felt like God was calling me to write for single women who are waiting on God’s will for a spouse, similar to the book Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Eliott. Deep down, I felt too intimated to tackle the topic of marriage. I submitted the proposal and felt confident. In May, I heard back from the publisher and they loved and affirmed my writing and passion, but felt like the market was too crowded for the idea to sell, but that maybe we just needed to explore a different direction.
I was tempted to get discouraged but Jeremiah encouraged me that it wasn’t rejection, but redirection. I knew he was right and I wasn’t going to give up. I realized the market really was crowded and deep in my heart I felt God had something different in mind. Shortly after that time, Jeremiah and I began to brainstorm ideas on marriage. After all, I had been writing marriage articles for over 2.5 years now.
Jeremiah was able to make my ideas better since he’s a visionary and I’m more detail oriented. We found ourselves really excited working on it together. We came up with a new idea and pitched it to the publisher. We also suggested the idea of Jeremiah and I writing it together as co-authors. Slowly, my fears of writing a book on marriage began to fade as I realized it wasn’t about me.
Several weeks later while we were on our road trip from Texas to the dunes in Michigan, we were able to talk on the phone further with the publisher. They liked the idea and helped us narrow it. They asked us to come up with a detailed proposal so we got right to work when we returned from vacation.
Well, I’m happy to say that three months later, we just recently submitted it! So now we are waiting to see if they would like to move forward.
The writing process has been such a journey, especially in the midst of raising our four young children. It’s been busy, chaotic, hopeful, and exciting. We’ve definitely experienced spiritual warfare and arguments– To be expected when tackling such a project. But I have been so blessed being able to work alongside my husband and watch his gifts shine through. When I compare this proposal to my first, I feel like it’s so much better having his point-of-view, insight, and thoughts from the male perspective. I absolutely love the book concept and it is unique in today’s market.
What I’ve realized most in this journey is that God’s plans are not mine. They are better. After hitting the send button to the publisher I felt nervous and excited. Nervous knowing that they may or may not think it will sell, but excited at the possibility that it very well could and we might get to sign a contract.
I also felt, who are we to write a book on marriage? There are so many other qualified writers and authors out there. At times, we feel so broken in our relationship and some days are really just plain hard. But that is the beauty of the gospel. Jesus comes down to us. He puts things in our lap not because we deserve them. With his life laid down, he raises us out of brokenness and sin and chooses us to be a part of his mission. That is a beautiful mystery I’ll never get over.
I’m humbled and honored at even the chance to send a proposal to a publisher and at the thought that God could use our stories and experiences to encourage others.
So really the question should ultimately be, Are we surrendered to His will?
We certainly appreciate your prayers as we hold the outcome with palms open.