Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Step Out Of The Boat - Derksen

Periodically, probably more than we wish Him to, God asks us to step out of the boat...step out of our comfort zone...even in writing. In Matthew, the account of Jesus walking on water toward the disciples, who are full of fear, describes how Peter asked Jesus to ask him to come. Jesus did and Peter stepped out of the boat.

As long as his eyes were on Jesus, Peter walked on water, but as soon as he took his eyes off Jesus and looked at his own circumstances, Peter sank. Writing is like that. We need to keep our eyes on Jesus when we are considering a piece we want to write, when we are writing it, and when we are promoting and selling the finished work.

A few years ago, God asked me to write my first devotional. I was into mystery...that was my genre of choice but...God asked me to step out of the boat. At first, all I could think of were the reasons why I was not qualified. Like Moses, I listed my inadequacies, and then decided God had not really asked me at all.

Three months later, during my personal devotions one morning, I clear as if He were in the room..."Are you going to obey me or what?"  I expected a lightning bolt to hit the wall above my head. I JUMPED out of the boat and began to pen my initial snippet for the first book of devotions and one that I expected would be the last.

I have now written four and, each time, the Holy Spirit brings a topic to mind that...after I completed the manuscript...seems to be a topic spoken from every pulpit I visit, whether through a variety of media outlets or at my home church. This year it's all about God's armor and in light of the spiritual battles that many are fighting, appropriate for the times we live in.

For the last two years, I've begun to hear how God is using my little devotionals in the lives of the people who've taken the time to obtain one. Straight Pipes (we are in a biker ministry as well) has been used to disciple many new believers. They bring their dog-eared copies to me for my signature when I appear at a rally they attend, and tell me how God met them through the pages of that little book.

Others have shared how they are used in their chapter (Christian biker groups of a particular association are called chapters) devotions. Still others tell me about using them in their church's men's ministry as a beginning point for further study. The books are underlined, highlighted, and well used...certainly not used as a keepsake.

I don't tell you this to inflate my own ego, and we writers certainly have those. I tell you this because what I never intended, God did. He knew and all He asked me to do was be use the gift He had given me in the first place for His honor and step out of my comfort zone and follow Him into another avenue of ministry.

I still have time to write mystery, the more diabolical the better, although I do place the gospel message strategically in each one, as I did from the beginning. But now I am more aware of what God wants me to do today, and stepping out of my comfort zone...stepping out of the boat...keeping my eyes on Jesus has become the adventure to end all adventures...even in writing.

Barbara Ann Derksen in currently working on the fourth book of what was supposed to be a trilogy. She and her husband are members of Christian Motorcyclists Association in Canada as well as the USA. Traveling all summer and writing all winter has become a lifestyle this grandmother of nine would not change for anything. God is good. Visit her blog and website at        

1 comment:

Peter Black said...

What an interesting and exciting life!
I like these lines and find it encouraging: "I tell you this because what I never intended, God did. He knew and all He asked me to do was be obedient . . ."

Popular Posts