I decided to become a writer in second grade, wrote my first novel in sixth grade, and hoped to make a living at it. A good living. But life kept interfering. Jobs, marriage, children.
Over the years, I sold a few articles to various magazines and started selling one or two short stories every year to one particular children’s magazine. But no book publisher wanted the manuscripts I sent out. Discouragement set in. Was it time to quit?
Because I worked at a school, I asked God to guide me at the start of one summer vacation. If I hadn’t sold anything by Labor Day, I would give up writing altogether. Scrap the years I’d wasted. More on to an easier line of endeavor. It was my Gideon’s fleece.
But that Gideon’s fleece was too easy. I upped the ante. I had no submissions out when I asked direction. I would send out nothing the rest of the summer. Not one poem, not one article, not one story. Not even a letter to an editor.
The summer progressed and every day I felt more liberated from what seemed like an obsession. Then, two days before Labor Day, a contract came in the mail from the children’s magazine I had sold several stories to. They wanted to reprint a story they had published a few years before. Would I please sign the enclosed contract so they could send me a check?
That magazine has never before or since asked to reprint one of my stories.
Thank You, Lord.
Some people might say a Gideon’s fleece is of no more significance than flipping a coin. They don’t realize the extent God is involved in our lives. James 1:3 says if we ask for wisdom, God will give it. And Proverbs 16:33 says “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord.”
So I keep on writing.