Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Long ago, an industrious restaurateur realized he had a bunch of extra cardboard coasters he didn't know what to do with. After a bit of thinking and fiddling, he discovered that if he folded them into a U-shaped pocket and slipped a piece of paper inside, he could give them out as cookies to grateful patrons.

Okay, I made that up. But I am not convinced anyone actually likes fortune cookies. They are to cookies what charcoal is to gems. But, that little scrap of paper inside makes us crack it open anyway to see what our fortune is, and then eat the halves because it would be wasteful not to.

Tonight at P.F. Chang's I got this:

Not really a fortune, P.F., but trueish. I would amend that by saying summits. As in, plural. And then I agree, even if it's still not a fortune.

Thankfully, we don't climb alone. This past weekend at the American Christian Fiction Writers conference I got to spend time with my peeps.  I left my day job behind, including my blackberry (suck it, blackberry!) packed up my favorite outfits, and jetted off to Indianapolis.

It was fabulous to catch up with old friends and meet so many new amazing writers.

But even in Indianapolis,  I was approaching the summit. I couldn't leave the hard bits of life behind, which I thought would be a liability. But, even though I didn't know it at the time, this was the very reason I went this year. Because I talked with two dear friends who helped share the load. Who can look over the other side of the mountain, can see the view that I can't yet envision, and help me continue to climb. 

Rachel Hauck and Reba Hoffman are two people I want to be when I grow up. Both had their own biz goin' on at the conference, but each took time to stop, talk with me, pray with me, and exhort me. To help me free my feet from the cold packed snow and start to climb again. These are the encounters that change you. Give a fresh view of the world that cannot be taken away. After all, that's really all that changes at the summit. You're still on top of a mound of rock, but the perspective is wide and long and beautiful.

Yes, I pitched and learned and pitched and learned. And that was fabulous. But the most lovely of blessings is seeing that God had prepared these two and gave them to me. Just the gifts I needed right when I needed them.

Thank you, God, for your people who you have been generous with. For painful/wonderful writing. For hope.  All my love.

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