Friday, April 1, 2011

Stained Glass Heart

As a soon to be published fiction author preparing for her career I've been taking time to consider my vision, my mission.

As a storyteller I long to share the stories of my heart. In doing so, I bring much of my self to them. But there is another story on my heart that is aching to be told. This is God's story in my own life. Yet, it is not my story, but His-story. I am living His story as written on the tablet of my heart through the circumstances of my life and my response to His leading.

I am amazed how that even in the midst of the stuff of my life — the chaos, the pain, the sorrow — that I have found purpose and the divine directing of my path. I learned early on that He does not waste our sorrows and that has given me hope to weather the storms, travel the beaten path, to turn the page because the story is not yet over.

I often think of my life as like a stained glass window. Thinking of it in all its intricacy, fashioned by a Master artisan, with purpose, and beauty to be shared. Divine somehow, not because of me, but because of the Master's plan. So many times it has come crashing down, broken into pieces. Broken dreams, broken life. I wondered how anything of purpose could come of such fragments — tiny pieces of broken glass that once revealed a perfect picture. And then something amazing happened, and happened again. The Lord took those seemingly meaningless shards and recreated a new design. It was not the same as before, yet all the pieces were used, not one of them wasted. The restoration process has been a huge part of the story of my life. My heart's desires have been redeemed, though not always, and seldom, in the way I had expected. But I've learned to let my expectation be from Him. The Master Storyteller, the Master Artisan of my life.

As I put on paper the words of my heart in hopes to encourage and bless others, I am an inadequate scrivener. My voice is also inept like Moses, yet I speak in obedience when called to do so. Not my words, but His. So I pray.

"My heart is stirred by a noble theme
as I recite my verses for the king;
my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer."
~ Psalm 45:1

But it is He who equips and provides the opportunity to share words "aptly spoken". This mosaic heart of mine is yearning to share my voice, by pen or tongue, if simply to touch one heart. One life. For Him.

Over the past few years I find themes burned into my stained glass heart, some which I've been already blessed to be able to share to various women's groups. And as I further prepare for this aspect of ministry, as God allows, I've learned about a fantastic training opportunity for speakers, writers, and women in ministry.  The She Speaks Conference by Proverbs 31 Ministries is about women connecting the hearts of women to the heart of our Father God.  Ann Voscamp, author of One Thousand Gifts, is graciously offering a scholarship opportunity on her website, A Holy Experience, for those interested in a applying.

"For I am full of words,
and the spirit within me compels me."
~ Job 32:18


Would you consider following my blog to keep up with my journey? I have three books that will be coming out over the next two years and have lots of great news to share. Bless you for stopping by. And my you follow that precious path the Lord has layed out for you.

5 comments :

  1. Beautiful thoughts, Carla. Love the stained glass imagery. All the heartaches and sorrows and experiences we have shine through in our work/writing for His glory, I believe. It's wise to think of your vision as an author. Your life will change a great deal and it's good to be grounded and prepared. I am often reminded of the quote, "Some are more concerned that they might be noticed than that Christ may be seen." Lord, keep us from that, is my response.

    I'm familiar with Ann Voskamp and love her blog. How neat that a scholarship is available! Thanks for starting my morning with such great insights.

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  2. Wow, that really was a beautiful post, Carla. Thanks for the encouragement and reminder of how God can pick up the broken pieces of our lives and make something beautiful out of them.

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  3. Laura, that is a wonderful quote. I do hope to always point others to Him, and am reminded also that my words, written or spoken, will have their first effect on those closest to me. I hope to be faithful in the little things. I've been spending quite a bit of time considering things to come, hopefully, excitedly, humbly! Thanks for your words of wisdom!

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  4. Naomi, thank you. I'm so glad it encouraged you. God is so faithful and forever creating and recreating. Special blessings to you today.

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  5. Your stained glass is beautiful. How did you get the beautiful tree on? I ask because I am a novice who needs to put a winter tree on a special stained glass panel. I am terminally ill and am making a panel for my best friend who is the sister of my heart. Winter trees are special to us both and I want her to always know that even though I am reunited with my dear love our bond remains true too. She is being so brave, grieving as she is for the friendship of my late husband and knowing she is soon to lose me too. I would be so grateful for your help in this matter. Kind regards, Lucy W

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