Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8 NRSV
Each fall as the writers conference draws near I begin praying about the next conference. As a leader you know when you reach a point that you’ve done all the planning you can for this year and it’s time to move ahead.
The first thing I pray about is the theme and the theme scripture. Sometimes I get it right away and other years it comes after the logistical planning begins. This year it was not until late January that God made it clear to me that the 2016 theme was to be Matthew 7:7-8.
I have to be honest when I tell you that sometimes I “get it” right off and other times it takes a while. Then there are the times when God reveals to me late in the game that I may have missed the point. This was the case last week.
When God first impressed upon me that this was the theme scripture it made all the sense in the world. Every speaker and writer I know is constantly searching for more gigs and more clients and knocking on the doors of agents and publishers. I thought this was the perfect scripture for our contreat. And for months I worked under that assumption.
Until last week. That was when through a number of conversations with speakers, writers and Christian leaders I finally “got it.” I was looking at this scripture far too literally. And then in my quiet time I was led to a passage of scripture in Luke 18 that painted a more realistic picture for me.
Sometimes we ask and ask, seek and seek, knock and knock and get no answer. We get discouraged and frustrated and want to give up. And that’s when the answer comes, the door opens.
During all of our seminars the most asked question is always, “How do I make income from my speaking and writing?” Karen Porter does an eloquent but realistic job of explaining that you have to work at it.
Work is hard and for someone just starting out it can be overwhelming, daunting even. And where do you go for help, for encouragement?
We all know that the first place is to the Lord. He is our encourager, our head cheerleader.
But sometimes we need what my friend calls “Jesus with skin on.” That’s what happens at a writers conference. We encourage one another. Our faculty, many of whom have been through the same frustration and discouragement, help us to look at things with a different perspective. We get new ideas, fresh outlooks, and our spirits are lifted.
If this is where you are at in your writing or speaking I encourage you to think about joining us in two weeks at the writers contreat. Come away to a place where you will spend time not just learning but leaning. Leaning into the arms of a God who loves you and is waiting to open those doors for you. Leaning with friends and colleagues who will help you get through the discouragement and frustration and lift your spirits.
It’s not too late. You can still register. We will make a place for you.