Today, author Grace Fox introduces her new book and tells us how God carried her through the writing process and used her book to calm and comfort her in loss. Enjoy Grace’s story of hope.
I liken writing a book to a spiritual journey that reminds me of my dependency on God and leads me into a deeper understanding of who He is. Writing Finding Hope in Crisis: Devotions for Calm in Chaos was no exception. This journey stretched and enriched my faith in profound ways. Specifically, it provided a means for me to witness three of God’s attributes in action.
I pitched the proposal using a different title in 2018. Two editors expressed interest but later rejected it. I intended to tweak and retitle it, but a busy schedule hindered me. In January 2020, as a friend described a challenge she’d faced three months prior, the existing title—Finding Hope in Crisis—came like a download into my mind.
The pandemic struck a few weeks later and left my calendar blank. I updated the proposal, my agent sent it to several publishers, and Aspire Press expressed interest. They were looking for a substitute for a similar project that had recently fallen through, and mine fit the need.
Psalm 37:23 says, “The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.” I’ve seen this verse fulfilled in other contexts, but the circumstances surrounding the proposal proved it true again. When we love and serve the Lord, He orchestrates every detail necessary to fulfill His plan for us in His timing.
Between signing the contract and starting the manuscript, my husband and I helped our daughter pack her household and move sixteen hours’ drive away. In the middle of the muddle, I broke my tailbone and suffered a shoulder injury.
My body felt wrecked after the long drive home, but a deadline loomed. My husband rigged up a makeshift desk so I could stand while writing. Using an O-cushion gave me the option to sit when my legs grew tired. As for my shoulder, the pain worsened and affected my ability to sleep.
In my proposal, I’d said I could complete the manuscript in three months. Before she issued the contract, the managing editor said she wanted to fast-track the book and asked how much time I could shave off the three months. I gulped. “I’ll do it in two months,” I’d said.
I knew that delivering the manuscript in two months even in the best of health would push my limits. Then came the physical hurdles. I prayed many times each day for God’s help, and He answered: I completed the first draft in 20 days despite injuries and insomnia.
Second Corinthians 12:9-11 says God’s power is made perfect in our weakness. Our human bent says weakness is a bad thing, but that’s not the case. When we admit our limitations and invite God to help, weakness becomes the portal through which we can see God do mighty things on our behalf.
My mother’s health declined suddenly three weeks after I submitted the manuscript, and she passed away two months later. I functioned in crisis mode during that painful time and craved biblical encouragement but couldn’t focus on a lengthy Scripture passage. I needed something easy to read when my mind was on overload. Finding Hope in Crisis—the manuscript I’d just submitted—became that resource. Who would have thought?
When he learned of my mother’s death, my literary agent offered a perspective I hadn’t considered. He said, “God knew this loss was coming, so He held the book contract until a few months prior. You were immersed in the Word for 20 days solid, focusing on truth that would help people in crisis. He used your own work to prepare you for what was coming, and He did this for you because He is good.”
Writing the devotional Finding Hope in Crisis led me on a faith journey that helped me understand God’s sovereignty, strength, and goodness in new ways. I pray it will do the same for my readers, for knowing these truths is key to knowing calm when life feels chaotic.Writing the devotional Finding Hope in Crisis led me on a faith journey that helped me understand God’s sovereignty, strength, and goodness in new ways. Grace Fox Click To Tweet
Grace Fox is a career global worker, speaks at women’s events overseas and across North America, and has authored ten books. She’s a regular contributor to Mornings with Jesus (Guideposts) and a member of the “First 5” writing team for Proverbs 31 Ministries. Her new devotional Finding Hope in Crisis: Devotions for Calm in Chaos is available wherever Christian books are sold. Connect with Grace at www.gracefox.com, www.fb.com/gracefox.author and https://www.facebook.com/FindingHopeinCrisis/.
(I still plan to deliver the resources related to last week another time.)
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