I am thrilled that my new book is released. Whew! Thanks to all who’ve shown your support with texts, emails, time, posts, and purchases. Readers, may you enjoy the read! While I treasure the moments after a release and catch my breath, the third (and final) story in the Letters to Layton series that has been peeking around the corner is now jumping up and down in front of me begging for my attention. Like a patient parent, I tell the story to give me a moment, then it will get my undivided attention. In the meantime, I’ve got some people to talk to–the characters.
I write letters to my characters, and I interview them as I prepare to bring their story to life. They talk to me as well. Sometimes they share their hearts at the most inconvenient time when I can’t drop everything and listen–for example when I’m driving or trying to sleep. I recently had a conversation with Henry.
“Henry, what do you most fear?”
“Plunging into the darkness.”
“What will you do if that happens?”
He hesitated, and I can only assume a slight grimace formed on his face.
“I will be totally dependent on others and on God to help me. I won’t be able to think, much less pull myself out.”
“Do you trust me enough to take you there?”
“Will you leave me there?”
My care for him must have shown as I felt my lips press together. My fingers felt the impulse to pat his hand.
“That’s for me to know. Do you trust me?”
As I asked Henry this question, my mind wandered back to times in my life when God had asked me the same question. Our third miscarriage. My mom dying with cancer. Financial strain. Health concerns. Times in “wait mode,” wondering why God was silent other than asking if I trusted Him. The one thing I’ve learned is that God “always comes through.” This doesn’t mean that every outcome is what I would have preferred. It does mean that whatever the outcome, God is sufficient to give me what I need at the time.
I think of Abraham. God made the childless, aging man a promise that a great nation would come from his off-spring. Abraham did what humans often do. Perhaps a little panicked, he looked at the circumstances and figured he better do his part to fulfill the promise God made. “Doing” is often easier than “waiting.” Despite Abraham’s intended solution, which carried its own set of consequences, God gave him the son he intended to use as the fulfillment of His promise. Then, years later told Abraham to sacrifice the life of that son. In my mind, this would have been more confusing to accept than the original promise. Although I get the symbolism behind God asking him to sacrifice Isaac, for the life of me, as a parent, I cannot “get” how Abraham had enough trust and faith to prepare to do it. He climbed Mt. Moriah trusting in God — to provide a replacement or tell him nevermind, or, gulp, to sustain him through the act of obedience. I suppose that Abraham focused on the truths and promises he’d received from God—that a great nation would come from his offspring.
I have never been called upon to do something as difficult as Abraham was asked to do. However, as mentioned earlier, I have been called upon to trust God’s character and His promises. When He “comes through,” I find myself wondering how I could have ever been anxious in the first place. (Hint: I’m a doer and a fixer.) God has filled His Word with promise after promise that we can depend on Him and trust Him in every situation. Take a look at some of His promises:
He will fight for us. He strengthens us. He upholds us. He is with us in deep waters and flames. His love never fails. He breaks our chains of bondage. He binds our broken heart. He gives us wisdom. He forgives our sins. He hears and answers our prayers. He will never forsake us. He gives us the desires of our hearts. He gives eternal life through Christ. He blesses us. He communes with us. He meets our needs. He guides us.
Take a breath! Isn’t the list amazing? Might I mention that it is incomplete. Claiming God’s promises are a part of our relationship with Him. A healthy relationship builds trust. You, know, just the other day I was fretting over something, and God showed me two different times in two different ways that He has the matter under control. What a beautiful picture of relationship that builds trust in God’s promises.
You might ask, “Who is Henry and what is this darkness?” The answers are found in the pages of my sequel story. Will I take Henry to the dark depths in my third book? I don’t know, but trust me, I’ll do my best to make the story worth the read of finding out.