Fire In My Belly

The week I’ve been waiting for since the beginning of May is finally here! This is the week I am going to a conference for writers and speakers, SheSpeaks, to meet with publishers about my book.

Whoa.

I’m so excited for this opportunity, yet so unsure of what to expect.

I keep vacillating between wanting to expect BIG things and then realizing that, in reality, the chances of any publisher being interested in picking up my book after 15 minutes together is slim. Book publishing is a process, and one that takes plenty of time.

But, I don’t want to sell the Lord short. What if…?

A Navy SEAL

This weekend we were back at my in-law’s lake house gathering with extended family for our annual family reunion. We have a young relative who is interested in joining the Navy SEALs, and as we were sitting around one night talking about what he is aspiring to do, I chimed in “I wanted to be a Navy SEAL when I was in high school!”

Everyone immediately said, “What?!? You did??”

I went on to add that I was sorely disappointed when a friend in high school kindly let me know that women cannot be in the Navy SEALs, but that didn’t stop me from dreaming about being in the secret services and perhaps one day being a body guard for the President.

My young relative innocently asked, “Why did you want to be a SEAL?! Did you know what went into it?”

“I wanted to do it because it is impossible.”

Then, in true Laura-passion-that-can’t-be-contained fashion, I jumped up and said:

“I want to stare impossible in the face and chase it down!”

Oh. My.

Sometimes I’m not sure what comes over me, and then before I know it I’ve dropped the veil of how I want to be perceived. What is really inside of me suddenly comes out – and it is in those moments that I know I am one step closer to living into my purpose.  This isn’t just a childhood dream; this is me.

I can feel the fire in my belly. I can sense the Father smiling over me. And, I can taste what life without fears, inhibitions, and limitations is like.

And I don’t want to leave that place.

SheSpeaks 2018

This Thursday I’m flying to the SheSpeaks conference in North Carolina. I’m meeting with publishers on Friday and Saturday. I’m taking my gumption, my book proposal, and a few well-planned outfits.

I’m staring impossible in the face.

My heart is racing as I type this.

What if? What if someone is genuinely interested in my book? What if someone requests to see my book proposal? Or my “one-pager” on the book?

Deep breaths.

What if this conference is the catalyst to a larger ministry vision I have in my heart?

Catalyst.

I keep coming back to that word. I truly believe this event will be a catalyst, but maybe not in the way I imagine. I like to set up scenarios in my mind and try out all the possible “what if” combinations. You know, just to prepare myself for any outcome (according to my cousin, that’s part of who I am (enneagram 6 ;) and I’m learning to own that!). Not that anything is inherently bad about planning, but in my heart I’ve been convicted that I need to leave this up to the Lord. My job is to trust Him, to lean into His love, and to embrace His gentle guidance.

I could be scared, but as I’ve already shared, I have nothing to fear.

The Lord is with me.

He goes before me.

His beauty and love chase after me.

 “God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.
You have bedded me down in lush meadows,
    you find me quiet pools to drink from.
True to your word, you let me catch my breath
    and send me in the right direction.

Even when the way goes through Death Valley,
I’m not afraid when you walk at my side.
Your trusty shepherd’s crook
    makes me feel secure.

You serve me a six-course dinner right in front of my enemies.
You revive my drooping head; my cup brims with blessing.

Your beauty and love chase after me every day of my life.
I’m back home in the house of God
    for the rest of my life.”

Psalm 23 (Message)

The same fire I felt when I truly believed I could be a Navy SEAL burns in me now. Surely there is nothing I lack. I’m confident the Lord will go with me as I present to publishers at SheSpeaks. And that I'll do so with a big, “chase it down!” in my heart.