Today I received my birthday present from my mom and sister. Now let me say that my birthday was in September. This gift was ordered then but just arrived. And it is a gift that has humbled me.
Several months ago I submitted a devotional for publication in yearly anthology. I was not sure it would be accepted, but to my surprise it was. The payment was one copy of the book, which has one devotional for each day of the year. My mom and sister were so proud of me and happy for me that they ordered......a case! So today, the much anticipated box arrived. My case of Penned from the Heart XV is here.
When it arrived, I opened the box and gingerly took out one copy. I rubbed the cover, which has a beautiful picture of a sunset on it. Just fabulous. I wasn't sure where exactly my devotional was, so I just started reading. I read the note from the editor, Jana Carman. She was fabulous to work with. I then read the note from the publisher, Florence Biros. It was there I learned the list of contributing authors and the location of their devotionals was listed in the back.
With great anticipation, I flipped the book over, started with the last page and feverishly searched for my name. I found it! There was my name, Marietta (Mari) Taylor. After it was the biography I had submitted. I saw my devotional was on January 29. Wow, right in the beginning. I excitedly turned to that page. My first published piece of work. I almost cried. It's one thing to "know" it's going to be published for the first time. It's quite another to see your writing in actual print. Woohoo! I just closed my eyes and breathed in deeply.
My emotions were ones of excitement and humility. Really, who I am that God has allowed me to live a dream I've had since I was seven years old? I am truly humbled. What makes this even more amazing to me is something else that is going on in terms of my writing.
I recently submitted a query to a ministry that has a publishing arm. They expressed interest in the devotional book about which I queried . And... they wanted to know if I was interested in writing a second, complimentary book. I was and I am. So now I am in the midst of writing my first ever book proposals to be submitted by the middle of this month. I will know in January if a contract will be extended.
So, seeing my first work in print right in the midst of trying to move my writing forward was encouraging. God is so, so good. I had been feeling a bit overwhelmed with the book proposals. I feel like God had them arrive today to give me that little bit of encouragement. You know, "Hey, remember me, the God of the universe? I've got you. Just write the vision. Let me handle the rest."
All I can say is, I will. I will. I'll keep you posted on the book proposals. They are in God's hand and He is just so trustworthy. Whatever He chooses, I am okay with it. Again, I'm already humbled by what He has already allowed, so anything further is just, well, fabulous.
I pray you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving! And as always, be blessed as we start this Christmas season.