On Purpose: The Story Behind the Book
May 25, 2020
I don’t recall the exact moment that I decided I would share Jesus with the world. But soon after I fell in love with Him, the stirring in my heart began. Standing near the front of the stage at a Joyce Meyer conference, I thought about how this one woman was changing the world through her testimony of Jesus Christ. She shared her life so transparently and her love for Him so openly that it caused people to experience Jesus in a real way. His love became tangible, not only for me, but for the world.
In this same way, I desperately wanted my life to impact people. I longed to see people’s lives changed- the same way He was changing mine. As I stood there in the meeting, without any forethought, I heard myself praying a very bold prayer. “Lord, give me a double portion of Joyce Meyer’s anointing.” I had barely gotten the words out in my mind when Joyce opened her lips and said, “Elisha asked God for a double portion of Elijah’s anointing. And then he followed after Elijah and learned from him. And he wouldn’t stop. Even when Elijah tried to push Elisha away, he wouldn’t go.”
I was dumbfounded.
When I prayed that prayer, I was twenty-three. I was way too young and naïve to understand the details of what I had asked God for. I was clueless about the extravagance of the request or the hard work it would take to accomplish such a task. I was simply a girl who loved Jesus and wanted the world to discover the amazing love that I had discovered in and through Him. I wanted to be used by God in a mighty way.
For years after that incident, Joyce Meyer mentored me from afar. I listened to her teachings, went to her meetings, read her books and bought her cassette tapes. I followed after her the way Elisha followed Elijah. If she did it and gained victory through it, I did it too. The more I grew, the greater victory I experienced and the more I could think of nothing better than having the opportunity to preach these same truths to the world. I had dreams of standing before multitudes of people all telling them about the love of Jesus and this life I had discovered that brought complete fulfillment. I dreamed of writing books that millions of people would read and be changed by. I wrote notes on my walls and declared out loud the vision that I believed God had planted in my heart.
Then, in obedience to what I felt like God was calling me to do, I began writing the book God had placed on my heart. In the depths of my being, I believed that God had called me to it, so I believed that I could surely do it. I knew I would need guidance from Jesus, but I was confident of what the Word said- that with God ALL things are possible.
As time progressed and I matured, I realized that making this dream a reality wouldn’t be near as simple as I anticipated. In truth, I wasn’t sure I was up for the task. There were so many hoops to jump through to get a book published and I had no platform- the one thing every publisher wanted. At the time, I didn’t have (or even want) a Facebook page. I didn’t want my life to be interrupted by the fame that would come with being known across the world if God decided to anoint me in a “double portion” kind of way. And with the many voices that began popping up all over the world, I wasn’t convinced that I even had a voice that needed to be heard. With so many others doing what I wanted to do- better than I ever thought I could- I didn’t see the point anymore.
John 12:23, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies it produces much grain.”
Slowly the dream in me began to die. I no longer had the passionate desire to preach across the world or to complete the book. The realization that I could spend countless hours writing with no guarantee that anyone would read it -or- if someone happened to read it, knowing that they may not like it, caused me to- all but lose heart. Intermittently over the next few years, I would pick up the book to write, only to become discouraged and put it back down again. But through the process, God would continuously cheer me on.
When I was feeling discouraged, He would find a way to encourage me through a portion of scripture, a prophetic word or a connection with a person that could change everything. Early on, He connected me with the one agent I was desperate to get my book in front of; the agent I prayed for an opportunity to meet; the one who is the agent for many well-known Christian authors. Not only did I meet her, but she gave me her personal cell phone number. Then years later, while vacationing in another country, I met an editor from Thomas Nelson who sent my book on to acquisitions (something that doesn’t “just happen”- especially with the largest Christian publisher in the world.) I got great feedback from both of these women, but neither resulted in the book deal I wanted. Instead, it showed me that God is able. God is able to do whatever He wants, whenever He wants to; and that if I wasn’t getting the deal, that there was a reason for it: Either I wasn’t ready for it yet or He had something else in mind.
As all this was happening, the Lord began to impress upon me the importance of simply serving the local church well. I began to lead Bible Studies no longer with the goal of one day preaching to millions, but to simply love God and the people He put in my path. Through the process I fell in love with them in a newer, deeper way than I ever had. I came to understand that I don’t need to have a big ministry to be considered successful. I don’t need to have a book published in order to be counted valuable. Whether I sell two copies, or two million copies, my worth will never be found in anything but Jesus.
Truth is, while in my head I knew this, it took eight years for God to establish this truth in my heart. It took eight years for Him to accomplish the work that needed to be done in me. If my book had been published by a large company early on, I would have taken all the credit. If it was successful, I would have thought it was because I was a great writer and highly favored by Him. If it hadn’t been successful, I would have declared myself a failure, questioned how I could have been so wrong and where I missed God in the journey. Without the fear of failure or need for success, last month, I finally felt the freedom to self-publish the book I began writing so many years ago.
And so I did it. I finally published the book I wrote. It is called “On Purpose- A 40 Day Journey to Loving Your Life” and it is now available on Amazon by clicking here– where you will also find a sample of the book. All the profit from the book’s sales will go to Kingdom work.
Today, I stand completely humbled knowing full-well that I could never have even completed the book without Him. And while my prayer today is still the same as it was so many years ago- that God would use this book to touch millions, I understand that my worth isn’t found there. Rather than worrying about what it looks like in the flesh, I have simply decided to honor Him with my life right where I am today. If He wants to do something amazing with my book, that’s on Him. If He wants to do something amazing with my life, that’s on Him too. Either way, I am completely satisfied. I don’t want anything apart from His will.