I stood in a parking lot last Thursday, phone pressed to my ear, staring at the toes of my brown boots on the black pavement.

A few quiet little tears slid down my cheeks while I listened to the voice at the other end of the line.

Sometimes a moment we’ve been looking forward to looks different from what we expected, and, caught in the weight of what isn’t, we don’t actually see what is.

I’d just received three things in that meeting: 

1) A huge and meaningful compliment about my writing from an acquisitions editor.

2) Some suggestions about the book I’d proposed, as it was not a good fit for her publisher, but would probably make much more sense to accompany a potential movie at the right timing elsewhere.

3) A welcoming, warm invitation to circle back with a different book idea, perhaps somewhat like the one I’d been writing before all of this happened with Blake anyway.

Overall, it was an incredibly positive meeting – but that one unexpected ‘no’ couched in several very positive ‘yeses’ was what my brain momentarily latched onto.

As I stared at my boot and talked and listened, a carpenter ant came trundling along with some special load of great importance. Ant on a mission.

I watched him hurry forward, and then decided, as I stood, just to put that boot right in front of his path … just to see.

Without hesitation, he turned to get around the mountain blocking his path.

So I blocked him again.

And without hesitation, he turned the other way and hurried off, making his way around, until he could make forward progress again.

When I laid a road block in front of him for the third time, he didn’t get frustrated and turn back. He didn’t stop and give up. He didn’t even hesitate to think about it. He had a load to bear and a direction to bear it in.

He hustled right over the top of my boot, not even pausing to take in the view from the summit – and off he went with his load while I nodded, impressed with his persistence.

I’m sure you can surmise the message already, friends: you are the ant, and so am I. And if we have a message and a destination, we’re better off steering around the obstacles – or even over them if necessary – to get on with the business we were created to do.

Even if we have to go over, under, around or through, progress is progress. 

If I learned anything last year, it was that God writes amazing stories. We can accept His invitation to trust the story He’s writing, and to do our best to stay faithful in the story.

If you don’t like where things are headed or you’re in a hard moment and it’s out of your control, take a deep breath and know: He is deeply invested in you. He sees you. He cares.

You can choose to keep showing up. You can do your part by choosing to keep being faithful.

You can trust Him with your story, friend, and I can trust Him with mine.

P.S. I write words of encouragement every week… but they don’t always make it to this space. I’d love to welcome you to click the button on the right below so that I can send you a weekly email with love. With the simple goal of bringing you one step closer to Jesus, I hope those words will be a bright slice of happy in your inbox once a week.

P.P.S. If you want the skinny on the journey of this writer-longing-to-publish-a-book and see a screenplay become a movie, that’s in the emails, too!

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