Welcome to Songs of Salvation! Each Sunday I will feature a Christian author sharing a "Song of Salvation" to uplift and encourage believers and glorify God.
And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death. Revelation 12:11 NLT
Authors, find out how to share your Song of Salvation here.
I grew up in a home that was broken in more than one place. My mother, who, God bless her, had issues of her own, married multiple times. Hence, I had several “stepfathers”, none of whom were there long enough to be real fathers. In addition, we moved twenty-five times before I turned eighteen. I never knew my father. Actually, I met him twice. Once when I was four, he dropped by to teach me how to tie my shoes. I still remember it so vividly. The next time I saw him I was sixteen and he took me out to dinner. I remember being so nervous, so desperate to please him. I never heard from him again. You can imagine what that type of upbringing can do to a shy, insecure little girl. I craved love and stability. I wanted someone to take care of me and never leave me. I had two choices to fill that need. One, turn to the God I learned about in brief periods of Sunday School, or two, seek to fill that need on my own with the things I saw in the world. I made the wrong choice.
Everything I did, every party, every relationship, every material possession I gained, every success I achieved, ultimately left me alone and empty until at age thirty-five, my second marriage was failing, I hated my dead-end job, my youthful beauty was fading, and my teenage kids were rebelling (wonder who they learned that from?) I remember wanting to kill myself, get it over with. I felt no hope for the future. I was a drinker back then. Alcohol helped numb the pain of life. So, I had a hidden bottle of Tequila in my closet. Whenever life overwhelmed me, I’d sneak in there and have a drink or two. One dark day, while sitting in the closet, I glanced upward and saw my old Bible sitting on a shelf. I have no idea to this day why I even kept it. But, I dusted it off and began to read it, promising myself that I would read it from cover to cover to see if anything happened. What did I have to lose? I wanted to believe so badly that God was real and that He loved me, but I had grown very skeptical.
I read it every night before I went to bed. Somewhere in the middle of Ezekiel, something began to happen. Passages prophesying how Israel would be scattered all over the world and then in the last days would return to their own land, flew out at me from the pages. You see, Israel was in the news a lot back then, like it is now. Suicide bombings and rumors of war were a common story each night. I knew enough history to know that Israel had only become a nation a few years before I was born. The stunning revelation that God had predicted them returning to their land sped through me like a cyclone. I mean, that’s something that has never happened before and was virtually impossible—that a nation scattered among a dozen other nations would come back and form their nation again! After 2000 years! And with their religion, culture, and language in tact. I remember saying out loud. “You’re real.” And then God’s presence fell upon me. I shivered. I got on my knees and began to sob. I gave my life to Him that night. I knew God was with me now. I knew He loved me and had a plan for my life. Suddenly my life had meaning and my heart was full. This is what I had been searching for!
But life didn’t get instantly better. In fact, it got worse! I had married an atheist and all of our children were atheists. I was in a house full of atheists! I didn’t know what to do. So, you can imagine the struggles and heartaches I endured, in addition to the constant battles of faith. I had so much to learn, and so many mistakes to make up for. Yet, through it all, God never left me.
Several years ago, my daughter and I became infatuated with the first Pirates of the Caribbean movies. We had fun sneaking off to see it in the theater multiple times! Shortly afterward, I heard God’s voice deep within my soul telling me that He wanted me to write a book about a Christian pirate. Honestly, I thought I had gone crazy and was hearing things! For one thing I was working full time as well as taking care of six kids and a house. When was I supposed to find time to write this book? But things began to change in my life, both at work and home, and I suddenly found I had some extra hours. So, without any formal training in writing or English, and never having written a complete novel before, I set out to write The Redemption, the story of a British lady who travels to the Caribbean in search of her father, gets shipwrecked, and then kidnapped by pirates. It took me a year to write, but I had no hopes of getting it published. I knew the odds of any writer getting published were extremely slim, especially a new, unknown author like me. But the Lord encouraged me, nudged me, and sometimes shoved me forward! He led me to online groups where I learned so much about the writing process and how to find an agent, etc… To make a long story short, God opened door after door for me in such a miraculous way that it was evident His hand was on my book. I received my first contract only three months after my agent submitted my novel to various publishers. Now, years later, I’ve written nearly thirty novels. God once told me that He had something wonderful for me to do, and I can honestly say, He’s a God of His word. Truth is, if God has called you to be His, He has something important for you to do too! The key is to learn to hear His voice and then be obedient.
I am also happy to report that during the past twenty-five years since I found the Lord (or He found me!), my husband is saved and all of our children, except one, have made commitments to the Lord and have been baptized. My marriage is better than I could have ever imagined, and though we still have struggles with wandering kids and jobs and family and life in general, one thing I willingly shout from the rooftops: God is real. He loves you more than you could ever imagine. And He is faithful!
On my blog each Monday, I post something I’ve learned recently in my walk with Jesus. I also post about end times, because let’s face it, all the signs are there and Jesus is coming soon! He’s preparing a place for His Bride in heaven. Don’t miss out. Give your life to Him today!