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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

On Days of Doubt

Photo Credit:  anitapeppers from
Last week was absolutely amazing!  It’s a bit surreal to me that I was blessed with the wonderful opportunity to share my children’s book, Gabriel’s Golden Key, with almost 800 children last week during my author visits!  Nearly 800 children in just ONE week!  So cool!  So very, very cool!

Many of you have asked me what I do at an author visit, so I thought I’d take the time to share that with you today.  When I visit a school, I like to break it up into two or three sessions, depending on school enrollment and according to age: (K & 1st), (2nd & 3rd), and (4th & 5th).  The sessions are 30 minutes each.  I love the library or classroom setting where the kiddos can get cozy and sit on the floor together as I share a few chapters of my book.

Of course, I like to throw in a few other fun attention-getting-extras in addition to reading my story.  Then, we have some Question & Answer time and I donate a book to the school’s library.  I send home order forms with the children so they can purchase their own book – either the paperback or hardcover version.  A special golden key comes with the autographed copy as well and the kiddos LOVE that!  Do I use my golden pen to sign the books?  Why certainly!  Plus, for each book sold, I donate $1.00 per book back to the school library.  Woo-hoo!

The children probably don’t realize how much inspiration and encouragement that I receive from them during each author visit.  Their eager, attentive eyes follow my every move as I walk back and forth reading the words and showing them the illustrations, while “getting into character.”

During a recent school visit, I received one of the best compliments that an author can get!  A precious little boy named Bodie told me that for "Favorite Book Character" day at school, he dressed like Gabriel from my book.  YES, I held back some tears!  He absolutely made my day!

The students exude such joy during my visits and I truly feel it in my heart and soul!  Their happiness and laughter light up the library or classroom and I love it!  I treasure the time I have to motivate children to read and follow their dreams.  I cherish the chance to instill a love for reading and encourage them to never give up.  I always share that it takes a great deal of patience in any worthwhile journey.

What I also adore are the questions they ask:  How long did it take you to write this book?  What inspired you to write it?  Will there be a second book?  Are you going to make a movie about this book?  (LOVE the big dreams out there!)  Who is your favorite author?  What is your favorite book?  Can I do your make-up and hair?  Can I design the clothes you wear to author visits?  Yes, I get ALL KINDS of questions.

Anyway, sometimes this author adventure catches me by surprise when I stop to think about it.  I’m humbled by the fact that God used me as a writing instrument to share His love.  I believe that He wanted me to be an author and I just answered…yes.

Mixed in with the excitement of any new adventure will be days of doubt – days when we doubt our gifts and talents, abilities, mission, plan, or purpose.  There are days when we might doubt just about everything.  So, it was timely that I received this reminder from Mikey and I knew it must be shared!  Here goes:

Use ME?!  ME?  The next time you feel like God can't use you, just remember...

~ Noah was a drunk.

~ Abraham was too old.

~ Isaac was a daydreamer.

~ Jacob was a liar.

~ Leah was ugly.

~ Joseph was abused.

~ Moses had a stuttering problem.

~ Gideon was afraid.

~ Samson had long hair and was a womanizer.

~ Rahab was a prostitute.

~ Jeremiah and Timothy were too young.

~ David was an adulterer and a murderer.

~ Elijah was suicidal.

~ Jonah ran from God.

~ Naomi was a widow.

~ Job went bankrupt.

~ John the Baptist ate bugs.

~ Peter denied Christ.

~ The disciples fell asleep while praying.

~ Martha worried about everything.

~ The Samaritan woman was divorced (more than once).

~ Zacchaeus was too small.

~ Paul was too religious.

~ Timothy had an ulcer.

~ Lazarus was dead!

And, there you have it!  God wants to use YOU!  God wants to use ME!  God wants to use US!  Yes!  He does.  So, let’s continue to make ourselves available…even on days of doubt.

Oh, Oh, Oh!!!  Drum roll please!  The lucky winner of the $100 for doing an Amazon review of Gabriel’s Golden Key is…Genevieve W.  Congratulations to you!

Have a wonderful week, Sunshines!  Bye for now!

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