Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Not Afraid Book Project

'Finish Line' photo (c) 2010, jayneandd - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
I'm the worst finisher ever.

I cannot tell you how many projects I've started and not seen through to the end, but it's a lot. When I was contacted about turning the Not Alone series into a book, I hesitated. It just seemed so big. Even though I was just in as the editor, it still struck me as an opportunity to fail. Or worse, an opportunity to succeed and have that taken away or undermined. Despite believing deeply in the importance of the project, I was sure that I was ill-equipped to head it up and my initial response was to give it a pass.

Fortunately, my husband pointed out just how often this has been my response. And with all of the love and honesty that I have come to expect over the years, he told me to stop being a baby and do the damn book. (No, he was way more awesome than that. But he was definitely not letting me out of doing it, no matter how much I cried about how scary it was. And oh how I cried.) So I took a call with Jonathan Brink and said yes, I'd like to do it. And here in just a few weeks, the stories of these brave writers are going to have a chance to make a difference in lives.

It took that moment of staring fear down and saying that it wasn't running the show. Encouragement from others is essential, but it doesn't do the work for you. At some point, I had to just say that my idea was good, that I had the tools organize it, and relationships with people who were talented and committed to this project. At no point did I have to do it alone, but I had to do it. Fear was not an option.

And I found that as I faced down my fears, I was left with a greater sense of self. I discovered what I was capable of doing. I saw that people didn't scoff my dreams, but were instead supportive. And in the midst of all of that, I found that I could believe that I had significance.

When we live in fear, we cannot see our value. But fear and love cannot coexist, so as we break down our fears, we are free to give and receive love. Love from those around us, and love from God. In this we find our value. In this we find our significance. As I continue to find this for myself, I want more and more to hear other stories shared about this topic.

I'm so happy to tell you today that I'm partnering once again with Jonathan and Civitas Press to work on a new collection of stories. This time we will be exploring Not Afraid: Stories of Finding Significance.


Thank you all for your amazing support for the Not Alone book. It has given me so much courage to begin work on this project and I can't wait to get started. Head on over to the site, download the project document and tell me how you have become Not Afraid!

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What's your least favorite part of a new project? Getting it off the ground? The long middle part? Trying to wrap it up? Let me know in the comments!

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