Saturday, September 23, 2017

An Unexpected Appointment with His Plan // Guest Post by Sarah Addison-Fox

I'm so pleased to have a guest post by Sarah Addison-Fox today! Doesn't she have the best name? We've connected recently through Twitter, and today she has an amazing personal story to share with you :)


When your doctor’s office rings to ask you to come in, you know it’s not going to be
good news. At the worst possible time, one month after starting to home school our
daughter, a son with increasing special needs, I was told I had Multiple Sclerosis. My
life started to crumble down around me. What did this mean for our future? Would I
end up crippled, unable to walk as I’d heard so many stories about?

Not even forty, with two children who depended on me, and a diagnosis that spelled
the worst, I tried to understand, but I couldn’t. It seemed so unfair. For a fewmonths
I pretended everything was ok, tried to eat right, exercise, do all the things I was told
would help. Sure, I was a little tired, but I felt pretty good all things considered. I
plodded along, trying not to think too much about the future, tried to stay positive and
took it one day at a time.

Everything changed when, after a particularly stressful day, I lost feeling in my right
hand. I went outside, tried not to panic, prayed, and put off going to my doctor. When
the loss of sensation spread to my arm and half my right side, I gave in and phoned
my doctor. I delayed taking the horribly powerful steroids I was prescribed, terrified
of the side effects, only giving in when l I lost the ability to control my arm. I tried to
make light of it, but I was scared. Truly, deeply terrified. All the things I’d never done,
the dreams I had, the future of our children, was wavering before me.

As I recovered, almost unable to function due to the drugs then withdrawal, I saw a
Michael Junior documentary that changed everything. He talked about people
knowing their ‘what’, but not their ‘why’, I broke down. I’d always wanted to write, but
I didn’t know why. Here was the reason, the purpose in the pain, I was so desperate
to find.

I started praying, repeatedly asking the Lord, how I could serve Him, how could He
use me to help others. I read a lot, escaping into fantasy worlds, to keep from
overthinking and worrying. I read my Bible, cover to cover and prayed for strength
and for faith.

One of my favourite books, Tahn, written by the late L.A. Kelly, says in her note to
readers, (I’m paraphrasing from memory here, so forgive me) she was led to write a
story, and that there was an urgency pressing on her. When I heard she and her son
had been killed in a car crash, it hit me hard.

What if God was calling me and I wasn’t listening? What if I missed this opportunity
because I was afraid? This began to resonate within me and like a seed planted, it
grew until I couldn’t shake the need to write, but I still didn’t know what. I kept
praying for the Lord to use me, I was now both willing and ready. I sat down one day,
opened my laptop and started writing. It was just an opening scene, but it sparked
Something.

After twelve years, I started feeling the pull to write again. This time I would be
obedient and trust that there was a purpose in my writing. I made a commitment, not
just to write each day, but a commitment to finish the first draft within the year.

I didn’t miss one day, no matter how much fatigue I suffered, how bad my eyes were.
I committed 100% because I was now writing for the Lord. And that mattered more
than anything. Yes, there were times I wanted to quit, but knowing my why, kept me
focused. This was important, somewhere, somehow the Lord would bring this novel
to fruition.

I had no idea of what I was doing, had no support from other writers, and no idea if
what I was writing was any good. But I hung on and trusted Jesus to bring the right
people into my life. I kept telling myself, if He wants this book out there, He’ll provide
the means.

Boy, oh boy, did He! In every single way conceivable, Jesus brought wonderful
people into my life. From the incredible alpha reader, who became an editor and
proof reader to the lovely girl who designed and built my website, and made my
covers. Jansina at Rivershore Books shared my passion for fighting human
trafficking and was so generous and understanding. Even the photos I use, and
immediately knew I had to have, are from a Christian photographer. Jesus was there
every step of the journey. When I couldn’t see a way, He found it. When I had a
need, He met it.

God is faithful. That dream you have, the dream you pushed to one side, or hid it for
fear of ridicule, He placed it there inside you, and He is just waiting for the perfect
time to use you.

Every day I wake up I’m grateful for the ability to write for His purpose. It drives me,
gives my writing meaning it never had before. It’s no longer about me, it’s about what
can I do for others. How can I speak light into the dark? How can I serve? Not just
other Christians, but how do I reach unbelievers? How can I find common ground?
What do I have that I can share?

We can make a choice in the face of uncertainty. We can choose to trust. Jesus will
never, ever fail us when we place our trust in Him.

Life isn’t easy, nor is it pain-free, but it is more beautiful and enriching when we live
our God given dreams. I gave up on ever being published, but God didn’t. He put
that dream inside me, and when I was in the place I needed to be, He rushed in to
fulfil it.

I want to encourage you, and I want you to hear God’s promise for your life. He has
plans for you, He knew you before you were born, He knows you intimately, and He
will never, ever give up even when you do. He’s right there waiting with everything
you need to accomplish your mission.

My strength comes from Jesus and the desire to see His will and His plan complete.
Nothing I accomplish is done under my own steam. His purpose for my life infuses
me with energy and nourishes me in a way I’ve never experienced before. And you
know what else? I am having so much fun writing! I truly believe He wants me to
enjoy this gift He’s given me, to cherish it, but most of all, I believe He wants me to
share.

I encourage you to seek that dream, pursue it and grab hold of it with both hands.
Listen to that still, small voice calling you. Give yourself wholeheartedly to Him and
He will provide everything you needed and so much more than you imagined.
If I can write five books in nine months, imagine what He can do for you?
Just trust, listen and act in obedience. He’ll take care of the rest.
Sarah Addison-Fox is a New Zealand-born home-schooling mother of two who loves
action-packed, clean, fantasy with strong heroines. She has an astonishing amount
of nail polish, has all her creative writing credentials shoved in a drawer somewhere,
and has a husband who, after 27 years, can still make her blush.   When she’s not
working on her Christian YA fantasy series, Allegiance, she can be found fangirling
on Goodreads or sending GIFs on Twitter. 

Connect with her on:
Website:  www.sarahaddisonfox.com
Twitter: @Saddisonfox
Goodreads: Sarah Addison-Fox
Doesn't Sarah have an amazing story? I hope you all feel encouraged in your writing. Because God can do the impossible to fulfill your dreams if they're His dreams for you :)

28 comments:

  1. Such an inspiration! Jesus is amazing!
    Wonderful post.

    ~Ivie
    iviewrites.blogspot.com

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  2. This is such a helpful post! Sometimes I just feel so drained but I often forget that others have it harder.

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    1. Someone once said to me,'There is always someone out there in a worse situation with greater problems' Focusing on what we can do is a great way to stay positive.πŸ˜„

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  3. This is a great post <3 Thanks for sharing this!

    Ellie
    www.uniquelyyou1.blogspot.com

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  4. Beautiful! I love what Sarah said, "His purpose for my life infuses me with energy and nourishes me in a way I’ve never experienced before." Jesus is so amazing. ♥

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  5. Incredible story and so much inspiration. <3

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    1. Thank you. It was tough sharing but if we can't help others what's the point right?

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    2. Exactly. Thank you for being beave enough to help inspire and encourage all of us who read Abi's blog. <3 praying for you and your family.

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  6. This is an amazing story, thank you Sarah for sharing it.

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  7. Don't mind me, I'm just sitting over here crying...

    Beautiful post, thank you for sharing.

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    1. Forgive my typos! Dealing with my three year old son and trying to not make a fool of myself in comments on here is hard! πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ˜£#Multitaskingmum

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    2. Haha, you're doing fine Sarah. πŸ™ƒ We all understand that kiddos make things more difficult most of the time.

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    3. Thank you! It's a bit of a juggling act!

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    4. I bet you're an A+ juggler! :D

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  9. Sarah, this is Karis. Wow! Definitely getting teary-eyed here. I knew some of your story, but not all of it. Thank you for sharing, for being willing to be used by God.

    Keep writing with your eyes fixed on Jesus, Sarah. I'm praying for you and am so excited to hear that I've been a small part of your story and a God given encouragement to you.

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  10. Sarah, thank you so much for sharing your story! When you shared this, it hit me so hard: "God is faithful. That dream you have, the dream you pushed to one side, or hid it for fear of ridicule, He placed it there inside you, and He is just waiting for the perfect time to use you." Truly, thank you for sharing Sarah and reminding me to hang on to God's hand. These dreams in my heart are there for a reason and will come to fruit I just the right time. <3 Thank you.

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  11. He so will Laura. When we are finally obedient and ready to trust, when we care more about pleasing Him than anything else, He whispers in our ear, Ok child, forget the past, go do this great thing I planned for you!

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