I shared a few weeks ago on social media that I signed the final signature of my contract with Tate Publishing for my upcoming book, December Caravan, which will be released on August 23, 2016. This book is my most personal yet...a collection of personal short stories (from 2008 to 2013), words of encouragement, and sweet inspiration on the concept of hope and an ever-present God despite circumstances.
It is hard to believe that it has been almost three years since I first started on this journey with this book. When I first received the contract in 2013 I was honestly stunned as it had been a dream of mine to be writing books for years, but I had always felt the Lord cautioning me to wait on His timing. Every time I would think about submitting book proposals I would hear the Lord's quite voice saying, "wait". After I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease and Cancer, I never imagined that this would be the timing. But as always, the Lord's timing is always perfect, and the way that He has opened up doors to write, have my books published, and have this as a ministry during this season leaves me speechless. His ways are always amazing.
Returning to this book and having it released this year, brings a soft smile to my face. This book specifically focuses on a 5 year period of time that was incredibly difficult, intensely personal, and a sweet time of falling more in love Jesus. I also see now that those 5 years so beautifully and lovingly prepared me for this season that I have been walking since the book ended. Throughout it all I see the Lord beautiful hand of grace carrying me each and everyday.
It is a funny thing to share your heart with the world through a book... and to be honest I probably would have removed some parts because they are so deeply personal. But I am learning in new ways how being vulnerable, showing the beautiful along with the messy, reflects the heart of Christ in ways that I could never have imagined. As we allow Jesus to step into our broken and messy pieces, He beautifully restores and redeems the things that we wish that we could forget or "erase" from our past. So returning to this time period in my life brings a soft smile to my face... and to my heart. A smile of a knowledge that comes with personally experiencing that the Lord works intricately and personally in the deepest lows and in the glorious highs... all remaining so faithful and so loving. He is so good.
As I signed the final signature a couple of weeks ago... I signed off on the final wording of the dedication page. What is ironic about this being the final signature is that these words were actually the first words I wrote for this book and only grew more precious over the years. *smiles* Words fail me on how to express how much the people in this dedication hold a significant impact of my heart....
"To the WCA class of 2009, thank you. Your love, your encouragement, and your selfless care for me will always be remembered with humility. You brought laughter when there would have been tears and a precious reminder that God was ever-present in the dark
...and to the WCA community who showed me what community rooted in God’s love and grace looks like… it was a piece of Heaven I will cherish forever
...and to Emily, my precious sister, who jumped on a plane and who has often held my hand in the dark lonely night of weeping, reminding me that joy comes again in the morning."
P.S. If you would like to keep up with updates specific to this book please follow along at the December Caravan Instagram page which you can find HERE! Also- I am going to be announcing the opportunity to be apart of the book launch team in a couple of weeks! If you would like to be apart of this (you don't have to be a blogger!) please leave a comment below with your contact information or send me an email and I will give you more information! Thank you!!