2013 was not my favorite year, but at the very end, in December, when I was least expecting it, something amazing happened. It was like God knew we needed a little slice of awesome, and boy, did he deliver.
You might know, I write books.
You might also know, this past July, I lost my new contract when my publisher decided to stop publishing fiction.
It was a hard few months and I actually came to the point where I decided maybe God only wanted me to write three books. And that was fine. Not in an "I'm so sad and depressed" kind of way, either. I just realized that I'd already given my plans and desires to God a long time ago.
Sometimes, when you do all you can, you have to step back and let God take care of the rest...I'd made peace with it.
And that's where I was by the fall of 2013.
But I have an agent who didn't see it that way. It's good to have people who believe in you, isn't it? She, in so many ways, helped me push forward, submitting a new proposal to the biggest longshot publisher you can imagine.
Like, my dream publisher. And I was sure it would always stay just that...a dream.
But then, something amazing happened.
My agent called. I was expecting her to say "I'm heading out for Christmas and wanted to say 'See ya' but instead she said, "Are you sitting down?"
And I said..."Uh...yes."
And she proceeded to tell me she had some pretty amazing news. Not only was I getting a new contract, but I was getting a dream contract with a dream editor and a dream publisher.
And I practically dropped the phone.
And that's when I realized that this year, 2014, really IS the year of the Big Dream.
Not only did Adam and I FINALLY start our business, The Studio, which was a 15-year dream in the making...but I signed a contract with Tyndale House Publishers and in February of 2015, I will have a new baby to share. (The written kind not the human kind.)
Adam has taught me it's important to celebrate these kinds of things. To not rush on to the next thing without taking a moment in the middle to stop and pay attention to the excitement. To stop and say "Thank You, Lord" because God has answered yet another prayer--not in my time, I might add, but in His.
So, this week, I am all about celebrating The Big Dream. I believe in it. I believe in writing it down. I believe in saying it out loud. I believe in asking God for the things you're believing for.
Naturally, that means I'm doing a super-fun-awesome giveaway.
My friend, Becky is also a big dreamer. She makes the coolest dang leather cuffs, and she's made one special just for you Big Dreamers out there.
My Big Dreamer happily modeled it for me:
Becky's shop is open right now, and it's not always open, so head on over and snag a leather cuff for yourself!!
I'm also giving away something VERY important to me. A Big Dream Journal.
This is mine:
It's not fancy. It's not even really pretty, but gosh do I feel empowered and focused once I get some time with it.
I'm going to create a blank journal just for you. Complete with all kinds of notes & illustrations, photos and inspirations. And in the upcoming days, I'll talk about why this is so important.
Finally, today's giveaway will also include my very first book, Scrapbooking Your Faith, because that was the first dream-starter for me...
I am still kind of amazed at how God took a hobby like scrapbooking and used it to help me realize dreams of being a writer one day.
And a paper artist.
And now a teacher.
It's kind of amazing how dreams intersect with each other, isn't it?
All that said, big dreams are scary, scary, scary... and SO necessary!
So, I hope you'll join me in celebrating this week and focusing on the dreams in the deep down part of your heart.
Now. About that giveaway.
Here's how to enter:
1. Leave a comment on this post. If you'd like, tell me about one of your big dreams. I promise, I won't laugh...I have some even scarier ones I haven't said aloud yet.
That's it! You're entered!
BUT, for more chances to win...
2. Blog, Tweet, Facebook or Pin this giveaway and come back here and leave a comment for each one you do.
That's four more chances to WIN!
And be sure to come back each day for more awesome prizes!