So Now What?

It’s been a month since I received the news of my book’s publication, and about two weeks since my first shipment arrived. 

The last few weeks have been a mix of a steady stream of decisions (“Should I offer a book signing? Would anyone actually come? Do I want to make any changes to my author website? In which cities do I want them to target my press release?”) and the gradual acceptance that I’m not dreaming. Holding my book and reading my name across the cover has forced an internal tension where I’ve struggled with the exchange of titles—”author” instead of merely “person who scribbles in her spare time.”  Calling myself an author still feels pretentious, like I’m wrapping myself in someone else’s overcoat. 

I always knew there were books to come, but I always thought I would feel different when the time came. I envisioned wrapping myself in soft cardigans before a crackling fire in a pristine, secluded cabin somewhere artfully crafting jeweled sentences that lifted my readers to ethereal planes of literary bliss. Instead, “But Who is Jesus?” came in fits and spurts over several months at a blinking living room computer surrounded by tumbleweed dog hair and a toddler tugging at my elbow. A writer cam at my house would have most often displayed a frizzy haired, sleepy mama sporting yesterday’s eyeliner smudging the bags under her eyes and pajamas in a dubious stage of cleanliness. Surely authors should look more dignified, my inner monologue is quick to state. 

But the reality is that I couldn’t have written, “But Who is Jesus?” in a secluded cabin. So much of the book sprang from Holy Spirit whispering the character of Christ in my daily interactions with my family. Jesus didn’t reveal Himself while on earth in seclusion; He displayed His heart and His nature across the gritty, authentic panorama of the human experience. The Jesus secluded on the mountains, praying to His Father, is one to whom we don’t have much access. We know He drew away to pray, but Scripture veils almost all of the details of His conversations. Jesus unveiled had dinner with friends, cuddled sick children, attended weddings, showed up at funerals, and napped in boats. Two thousand years later, He’s still choosing to show Himself through weak humanity in prison houses, checkout aisles, office buildings, and (in my case, at least) surrounded by three rambunctious children and an oversized coat-blowing husky in small-town Mississippi. 

The question I’m currently asking the Lord is, “What now?” Is there more for me to write? I confess, it seem unthinkable that any subject could compare to the revelation of who Jesus is. So, do I stay in this theme and keep researching? Or is there another facet He wants me to explore that will exalt the name of the Savior I love? At this point, I have no answer. So I rest, and I wait, and I keep looking for Him in the small places of daily life. 

Further up and further in. 

-Chrystal

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