Willing vs. Unwilling or Will-less
I was talking to a friend about how to follow God in our pursuits, and she offered some wise advice, “We need to be willing to follow God vs. unwilling or will-less.”
“Will-less” grabbed my attention. Choice is a big deal to God (that’s what my blogs are about), and He wants us to pursue Him actively. God wants us to have agency instead of leaving it all up to Him. God blesses us when we step out in faith.
This thinking applies to my recent book project and the choice I decided to make. When my kids went to college, I wanted to share the hope, healing, and strength found in a healthy relationship with God. I believe sharing our personal stories is one of the most powerful ways to share our faith, so I started writing.
I am confident God called me to write the book pictured here, Disruptive Grace. . . Invites Divine Transformation, to which I devoted much of three years, but when it was finished, His purposes worked differently than I expected.
Right before I sent my manuscript to three interested publishers, I had some of my family read it, and the project came to a screeching halt. Although my book is not a memoir, it includes many of my struggles, which hurt some of the people I wrote about, especially since it was primarily my perspective. Although I was ready to share these stories, they were not.
At that point, I had a decision to make. I could be unwilling to listen and just charge ahead with my plans, or I could be willing to change directions. The decision was clear, as people are more important than projects and God values love over everything.
I decided to put the book on hold.
Even in marketing the book, I felt called to write; I realized God had another purpose for me, one that had more to do with inner change than outer accomplishment. Proverbs 16:3 was my guiding verse, “Commit whatever you do to the Lord, and He will establish your plans.” I knew my part was just to write the book; God, not me, was in charge of the results.
Writing has a way of getting to the bottom of things, as we must search for the truth. As I revisited my stories in the light of God’s grace, I saw through the lies I believed in the past and gained a broader perspective. “Going there” with God enabled me to forgive at a deeper level and let go of past resentments. Writing Disruptive Grace has changed my life, and I now live with more gratitude, compassion, and humility.
Plus, when I was brave enough to share how faith had worked in my private struggles with beta readers and writing groups, even friends who weren’t interested in Christianity got curious. They wanted to know the kind of God I had written about and joined our Bible study, which has made my heart so full.
I still have a lot of writing in me. Disruptive Grace was the impetus for my weekly blogs, where I get to process things through the lens of faith.
If I had been will-less, I would not have taken on this project and experienced the healing it provided. And If I had been unwilling to change directions, I could have hurt those relationships I care most about. I’ve learned that when we surrender to God’s greater purposes, His plans always work for our good.