Enjoy some wise counsel on living by faith from my friend, Bill Blankschaen, who has a new book coming out on May 19, A Story Worth Telling. Here is what he says he learned about faith by writing this book. Thanks, Bill!
“Lessons I Learned from Writing a Book about Faith”
- Faith is at the core of everything. The need to trust is woven into the very fabric of the universe. All people are people of faith, not just Christians. I explain more in the book, but I have become aware — sometimes painfully aware — of how much I must to trust God to do anything and how how often I fail to trust him while doing my own thing.
- The mission remains, but the process can and will change. I called the book a field guide because I wanted to offer proven, practical tips for living an authentic life of abundant faith in the real world — out in the field where faith takes place. As any hiker knows, sometimes the best laid plans go awry. While writing the book, the plan changed several times as I dove into the Scripture, examined my own life, and heard the stories of other FaithWalkers. The process changed, but the mission — to equip you to live an authentic life with abundant faith — remained the same. Hopefully, when you read it, your faith will grow in ways you never imagined possible. [ Don’t forget you can still get a copy for free as part of my launch team. It doesn’t take much, but time’s almost up. ]
- Things don’t always turn out the way you thought they would — and that’s OK. You are not God, in spite of your brief delusions to the contrary. And the path to the top of the summit doesn’t always turn the way you think it will. That’s precisely why faith is so vital to our journey. For this book, the plan changed a few times. There was miscommunication and confusion that set back the timetable. And my own efforts to help launch a business ended taking up a lot of my time. There were several times in what writers call “the messy middle” that I wanted to quit. But persistence paid off.
- I am not alone. One of the most encouraging benefits of writing this book was discovering that I am not alone in my quest to live with authentic faith. For every story that made it into the book, I heard at least ten more along the way. The world is full of people committed to faithfully living out what they believe to be true — often in the face of pain, discomfort, persecution, and great uncertainty. And not one of them I encountered would trade any of it. There is an authentic joy and fulfillment that comes from doing what we were created to do. All the stories inspired me to finally take the plunge into podcasting this summer. Stay tuned for more about The FaithWalker’s Podcast where I will feature more inspiring stories from real people living out their faith out in the field along with practical helps to grow your faith. Who knows? One of those stories just might be yours.
- It takes a team to get things done. I could not have written this book without the support of the many people I name in the Acknowledgments. So it is with the walk of faith itself. We are never alone, no matter what we see, sense, or feel. And when we try to go it alone, we fail to do what we could have done with the support of a team.
- The good in life can easily distract us from the best in life. This is a tricky one that, unfortunately, took me awhile to figure out. As I mentioned above, the writing process absorbed all my spare time for about two months. I thought at the time that in order to make the deadline, I had to skip church. After all, it wasn’t like I was missing church service to play football or something. And I was writing a book about God. But as I reflect on it now, I think my faith fell short during that season as I leaned more onto my own strength than trusting God to make another way. And I likely set a poor example for my kids. (I did confess that mistake to them and asked their forgiveness for setting hat example.) Writing this book to help others think, live, and lead with abundant faith was, I hope, a good thing. I pray people read it and take their faith to a new level. But even good things can become an excuse to let our faith slide.