This is a story about two women who helped me believe that God could fulfill His purposes for my life.
And this is a story about the same two women helping you believe in God’s purposes for your life.
My part in the story starts in 2010, when Ann reached an arm across the dinner table and put her hand over top of mine.
We were two farmers’ wives — both of us far from our husbands and their pigs and their green tractors and our children. We were two Jesus-sisters in a Texas canyon, by a jade-tinted river, with our feet under one long wooden rectangle. She leaned a slender hand over to touch mine, a timeless way of saying to someone else, “I believe in you, and I believe in the One who lives IN you.”
“Jennifer,” Ann asked. “When are you writing your book?”
She was a match, lighting a candle, making me know it was OK to imagine the impossible, and to say aloud the unspoken urge that I really ought to move on the God-nudge inside of me.
And, I told her, right there, at Laity Lodge, what it was. I told her about the book that I’d never dared talk about, for fear that I’d fall flat on my face. I brought my fears, and some tears, to the dinner table. Ann listened and encouraged. Because that’s what Jesus-sisters do. They help you know that you’ve got fire in them bones, that you have a purpose, and that you have a life that matters for God and for people. Girlfriends like that help you know that you can go deeper with the Person of Christ than you ever dared to go.
That was months before Ann’s own book, One Thousand Gifts, would hit bookstores, starting a revolution of gratitude that happened because Ann dared to follow Christ into the purposes He had laid out before her.
Fast-forward several months. It was the winter of 2011; a radio-show host’s name appeared in my box. Her name was Susie Larson. She had read a crazy blog post that I’d written, and wondered if I might be interested in writing for the Faith Radio website. She also asked if we might stay in touch. And we did. She prayed with me, sent emails, let me know that my words mattered, and that I had “a beautiful purpose.”
Fast-forward two years. It’s 2013, and you’re right here with us, my friend. You’re right here at my kitchen table.
And look who has joined us?
This book? This is Susie Larson, cheering you on. And this is Ann Voskamp, reaching a hand across the table.
Friend, they believe in you. I know, because I’ve read their words in this book, Your Beautiful Purpose by Susie Larson. (Ann Voskamp has written the Foreword.)
“God will meet you in these pages.” ~ John Eldredge, author of Wild at Heart, Captivating, and Beautiful Outlaw
“When I read these pages of Susie Larson’s, when I read her stories and her startling wisdom and her fresh insights and of her tender walk with our Savior, I feel like someone has filled up all the pages of my Peace journal–that someone is showing me–practically, page by page, purposefully–how to go deeper with the Person of Christ, the purpose of my life, and the peace of my days.” ~ Ann Voskamp, bestselling author of One Thousand Gifts
Your Beautiful Purpose is for the doubters, and the fearful, and the unsure. It’s for the ones with buried passion, … and for those who have already dared take the next big step. It’s for any woman who wants to believe that what the Bible says is true: God has a plan and purpose for her on this earth. No matter how broken, tangled-up, messed-up, sweaty-palmed, or clumsy you feel, God picks you!
“God’s will for you is your best-case scenario.” ~ Susie Larson
How I long for you to hold these words in your hands …
I’m delighted to give away FIVE copies of this inspiring book, thanks to the fine folks at Bethany House publishing. For a chance to win, simply leave a one-word comment below (or more words if you choose) by answering the question: What is the biggest obstacles you have faced in discovering God’s beautiful purpose for you? (Such, as fear, comparing, waiting, unbelief, flawed, rejection, discernment, other…)
SHARE this giveaway on Facebook and Twitter for more chances to win. (Tag me, or let me know in the comments that you’ve shared.)
On Tuesday night, I will select FIVE winners to receive Susie’s book. And until then, I personally commit to pray for each one of you in the comments, for your purposes and for God to help you overcome the specific obstacles you face.
This book has stirred my soul and inspired me to live each day more fully for Him. It makes me want to go out, grab a few stones and slay the giants that stand between me and my purpose.
You have a divine appointment, friend. This is me, reaching a hand across the table, to let you know:
“God so wants to use you. Let Him do a mighty work in you.”~ Susie Larson