The story of Moses causes me to smile, probably because I see myself in him. In his early days, when God called him to lead the Israelites out of slavery, Moses was a whiner.
“Moses raised another objection to God: ‘Master, please, I don’t talk well. I’ve never been good with words, neither before nor after you spoke to me. I stutter and stammer.’” Exodus 4:10 Message Translation
With a good southern accent, I also complained, “Lord, please, I can’t write. I’ve never been able to write and you know this about me. Why are you asking me to write a book?”
However, because I felt God had asked me to write a book, I dabbled until an eighty-two year old writing teacher confirmed that I indeed could not write.
“Mrs. Rhonda, you have had a lot to happen in your life and you have a great deal of passion, but you just can’t write. A good book should have a total of five explanation marks. You had five at the end of one sentence!”
Deflated and unsure of what to do–I prayed and whined some more.
Shortly after, I was invited to a book club event to hear Patsy Clairmont speak. I knew of Patsy, who had authored over thirty-five books and was one of the founding speakers for Women of Faith conferences, but it was a great surprise to me when this spicy little gal stepped up to the microphone. She was wearing a cute bandanna to contain her gray curls and funky red glasses, as though she were a Foster Grant model. I was convinced she was speaking directly to me when she questioned, “Has God ever asked you to do something that you didn’t feel equipped to do?”
The following morning, to my surprise I had an invitation to an event called “Shaking Your Tree” from Patsy Clairmont. It wasn’t because I was special; I had just been added to her email listing the night prior. My heart fluttered with excitement as I signed up.
The event was actually a small quaint group of women within Patsy’s home. We gathered on a Friday evening and all day Saturday as she inspired us to see something new within ourselves. I had never been more uncomfortable in my entire life. My tree was shaking alright—from fear! Yet, I couldn’t deny, something else was stirring within me.
A few weeks later, another email arrived from Patsy herself. She was thinking of offering a five-week writing course on Monday nights and asked if I would be interested. Nervously, I replied yes.
We gathered comfortably in Patsy’s living room once again. I sunk into a chair, pretending to fit in and smiled at others as they arrived.
I don’t belong here…
Why did I sign up…?
The other women in the room were artistic, creative souls, then there was me—a fish out of water. Each night she challenged our minds to think outside the box. On the last week, she randomly tore a page from a magazine and handed a sheet to each of us. We were told to write a couple of paragraphs based on the images upon our page. Then she added, “Be prepared to read aloud what you have written.”
I studied my magazine page and words began to form in my mind, as I looked at the stunning woman dressed to the nines. Her hair was loosely pinned back to expose diamond earrings; her gaze seemed to search for someone. I read aloud…
“My man could be seen across the candlelit room. He lured me with the curl of his lip. I drew near, sensing his passion, as his eyes stared deeply into my own. We touched and found once again, hearts on fire.”
After I finished reading, there was total silence. Slowly, Patsy arose from her chair and knelt down in front of me.
“Rhonda, you are more than you know.”
That moment changed everything for me. I saw myself in a different light and realized that God would not have asked me to do something unless He…
“Equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever.” Hebrews 13:21
May He receive all the glory!!!!! (When I get excited, I can’t contain myself)