Thursday, March 19, 2020

You Can’t Run from Your Calling By Leslie L. McKee

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
- Proverbs 3:5-6

Growing up, I wanted to be a writer, among other things. I wrote a few short stories, but I mostly wrote poetry. I’d carry a notebook with me everywhere I went. I entered contests, and I was even a finalist three years in a row for a prestigious summer program for high school writers. I considered a career in journalism. I continued to write on a regular basis until I hit college. There, it slowed a bit as I pursued other interests, but I would write something for special occasions or class projects. Writing, as a career, however, was pushed to the side.

I thought I knew where I was going with my career path, but things took a turn in 1994. That’s when I was hit by a car, and my journey with chronic pain and chronic illness began. I found some solace in journaling, but I never saw it as a career.

Over the next few years, my love of reading led me into reviewing for publications. I was writing again. Almost without even realizing it, I had come full circle … back to my love of writing. And yet, I still didn’t expect it to go anywhere.

People told me I should share my story of chronic pain and illness, but I’ve never been one to open up to anyone … especially strangers. So, I continued to be content with writing reviews and editing (a career that came out of my publishing connections). I had a job where I could read, and I loved it!

One day, I received an email that I would later recognize as a nudge from God. An editing connection sent me information on entering a contest to have devotions published by Ellie Claire/Worthy Publishing. The topic was one that I’d been toying with writing about for years, yet I never pursued it. I wrote back saying I was definitely interested. After I pushed send, it suddenly hit me: I had never written a devotion in my life! Sure, I’d read a lot of them, but I’d only written reviews or poetry. However, I had committed to submitting a sample, and so I did.

I never expected to hear back from them. So imagine my surprise when I was offered a contract to write ten devotions to be included in a 365-day compilation. It was at that moment that I realized God had done it again 😊

Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” That is exactly what happened to me when I hit “send” on that email.

The Lord knew that desire had never truly left my heart. He’d placed it there, after all! It just took a bit of a “nudge” (by way of a car accident and a friend) to remind me of the calling that had been placed on me decades earlier.

God has a calling for each of us, and I fought mine for years. Perhaps you have, as well. Reread Proverbs 3:5-6. Consider memorizing it. Go to the Lord in prayer. Ask Him for guidance in every aspect of your life, including your writing. Then trust Him. He knows what He’s doing!

Leslie is an editor, reviewer, and author. She’s a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and The Christian PEN. Her devotionals have been published in compilations by Ellie Claire: Just Breathe, Refresh Your Soul, and Breathe: Devotions to Quiet the Soul. She has had flash fiction stories published, as well. Leslie is currently working on her first book, a devotional for women battling chronic pain and illness.

In her spare time, Leslie enjoys reading, crocheting, spending time with family and friends (and her turtle!), and rooting for the NY Giants.

Social media links:

   (@leslielmckee for all social media sites)