Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Allotments

In recent weeks, I've been listening to my iPod Bible. Hearing the Word in a new way has stirred some fresh insights, especially in the places where my eyes tend to glaze when reading (Leviticus, some of Numbers, etc.).

Yesterday I was listening to Joshua 13-19 . . . a detailed listing of the boundaries for each of the tribes in the Promised Land.

Even staring at my Bible map while listening, it got a little tedious listening to the names, the cities, the geographical descriptions.

But I was struck by how Joshua cast lots "in the presence of the Lord" to set up the territories. In other words, God set the boundaries.

How often I've looked at someone else's life and murmured to God, "Look at the great land they are inhabiting. Look at how wide their territory is extending. Why does my spot of service in your kingdom seem so tiny? So arid? So unimportant by comparison?"

Listening to the book of Joshua challenged me to be grateful for the metaphoric land He's allowed me to inhabit, and reminded me to trust His boundaries. If I'm not able to serve in a certain ministry at my church, I can rejoice for those who are called to it, and trust God has something else in mind for me. If my books don't reach as large an audience as I'd hoped, I can thank Him for the great authors who inhabit vast territories for His glory and thank him for the tiny foothill where He's allowed me to build a village. If my prayer life feels like a tiny barren cave instead of lush and fruitful vineyards, I can trust that God is producing what He needs to within the little cave.

One more lovely thought from Joshua. In the opening chapter, God says to Joshua over and over, "Be strong and courageous." In his farewell speech to Israel much later, Joshua says to the people, "Be strong." I loved that parallel. What God spoke into his life, Joshua lived and then spoke into the lives of others. Isn't that cool?

On another note, one of my favorite sites reporting on books, music, and movies is Title Trakk. They recently posted a review of Symphony of Secrets. Of course I'm always grateful when someone appreciates what I'm striving for in my stories--but I was particularly blessed by this review because it was so beautifully written - evoking the imagery of a symphony in the description. If you have a moment, stop by to check it out!

And you can still enter the drawing for a free copy of Sherri Sand's debut novel in the prior post. I've loved hearing everyone's contributions for favorite fictional moms!

Blessings!
Sharon Hinck

The Secret Life of Becky Miller (2007 ACFW Book of the Year - 2nd place, Lit category)
Renovating Becky Miller
(2008 Audie Award Finalist, Inspirational Fiction category)
The Restorer
(2008 Christy Award Finalist, Visionary category)
The Restorer's Son (Romantic Times 4.5 stars, Reviewer's Choice Award - Road to Romance reviewers)
New Releases:
The Restorer's Journey
Symphony of Secrets

Coming Soon:
Stepping Into Sunlight

1 comment:

Faithful1 said...

Sharon,

Your thoughts on allotments blessed me. I need to work on being content with the things God has given me. Blogging is definitely not my gifting, so I comment here with some trepidation. I don't see anything like spell-check here, and I feel terribly vulnerable without it. Like you said on your website, even the small choices we make in our day to day life can be heroic. I comment on this blog because of your presentation at the MCWG meeting this month and because the Lord speaks to me about my walk with Him through your books and blogs. Thank you for being a faithful messenger.

Faithful 1