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October 2011

Reporter: Jordyn Redwood

Jordyn RedwoodJordyn Redwood is a nurse specializing in critical care and emergency nursing for eighteen years and is currently employed as a pediatric emergency nurse at The Children’s Hospital in Colorado. She was published in 2006 in the medical textbook Abusive Head Trauma in Infants and Children: A Medical, Legal and Forensic Reference. Her fiction manuscript, Identity, finaled in the 2010 Genesis Contest. Redwood’s Medical Edge is her medical blog that focuses on aiding historical and contemporary novelists write medically accurate fiction.

Editor: Michael Ehret

Michael EhretMichael Ehret is the editor of ACFWs ezine, Afictionado, and the Editor-in-Chief of the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild. Previously, he worked as a reporter for The Indianapolis News and The Indianapolis Star and was a senior editor for Everence Financial in Goshen, Ind.

Divine Appointments at Conference

As a writer having attended the ACFW conference now four times, I am keenly aware that the focus of many writers is on appointments and whether or not they were orchestrated by God. Was my meeting with a certain agent or editor divinely arranged for His will in my writing life?

My view on this changed dramatically through the eyes of a first time attendee named Nicole. It was Thursday night and dinner plans were being made. A friend of mine, Kim, had taken under her wing this newcomer. Fairly soon, there were nine of us for dinner. Among us a fairly well known writer.

Divine appointment #1

We asked the waitress if there was anything we could pray about for her.

At dinner, we asked the waitress if there was anything we could pray about for her. The look on her face suggested little church experience but she agreed to play along and expressed a financial need. At the end of that meal, this well-known author paid the check for all of us and asked in return that each of us provide a tip to go to this young woman. Now, there was already gratuity figured into the check due to our large party. Another $100.00 was raised. Was it a divine appointment to impact that one individual?

Divine appointment #2

Her eyes glittered as she told us how much she loved these stories.

At the ACFW Awards Gala, another server confessed to our table that she’d been taking home the leftover free books that were left behind after meals. Her eyes glittered as she told us how much she loved these stories. Was it a divine appointment of that writer, of that publishing house, with the call of God etched on their hearts to impact that one soul at our national conference?

Divine appointment #3

I shopped a lot in the bookstore. I bought a Zondervan novel just to get the free Max Lucado book for a friend of mine who’s a big fan. Unfortunately, I did not take advantage of the shipping through the bookstore and my luggage was five pounds overweight and they were going to charge me $50 to keep it as is. I flopped open the top and grabbed a bundle of books and proceeded to gripe about them not taking the bag as is when I was only checking one and had the option to bring two.

Now, I’m holding two carry-ons and this bundle of six books. I have no idea where I’m going to stow these. I’m tired, hungry and acting like a spoiled brat. Ask Kim, she can verify.

He expresses an interest in reading but doesn’t have anything for his flight.

As writers do, my friend and I begin to talk about spy plots standing in the line for security. Perhaps this is her ploy to get me out of my grouchy attitude. However, this is not a wise place to chat about such story lines as we catch the ear of another passenger who is dressed in military fatigues. Kim begins to explain how unconcerned he should be as we’re writers and no place is safe from devilish structural elements.

He expresses an interest in reading but doesn’t have anything for his flight.

I look at the group of books in my hands. The ones I’d grumpily pulled from my checked luggage and looked for a manly title. In that group was the Max Lucado book I’d picked up for my friend.

I gave it to him.

New eyes

As Christians, sometimes our Divine Appointments are not at all what we think they are and perhaps not with anyone who will ever impact our writing life. Maybe it is with those around us to give them a glimpse of God’s light living in us.

Consider this next time you think you don’t get the appointments you were hoping for.

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