November 03, 2017

Always an Adventure by Steph Beth Nickel

I am in agreement with Bryan Norford, that we, as Christians, ought to pray before putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. In fact, we ought to pray before undertaking any task—especially one as important as communicating with our readers.

A crucial part of our prayer life is following where God leads. Sometimes, He responds to a specific prayer and His direction is clear. Sometimes, we pray more generic prayers and only see His leading as we look back over the course of our life. The Lord has directed my path and answered my prayers in ways I never expected.

How can we recognize God’s leading in our life and in our writing?

The Tug on Our Heart
Many writers felt the urge to put words on paper from the time they were a child. When that desire doesn’t go away—or when it keeps resurfacing—it just may be that God wants us to write. Songs. Poems. Books. Blogs. There are countless possibilities. If ever there was a time to pray for wisdom and direction ...

The Connections We Make
I’m sure, like me, you are blown away by the connections you’ve made because of your interest in the written word. I met Ruth Waring because she spoke at a ladies’ meeting at my church. I made contact with the members of The Word Guild because Women Writing for Christ, the writers’ group Ruth Waring formed, attended Write Canada together.

I met members of InScribe at the Write Canada conference and eventually became a member. I’ve had the privilege of contributing to both anthologies published by the organization and was privileged to serve on the editorial team of 7 Essential Habits of Christian Writers. 

I also met Ron Hughes at Write Canada and eventually, joined the HopeStreamRadio team.

There are so many more connections I could mention, and I’m sure your story is similar to mine.

The Opportunities We Discover
While it’s good to plan, we must always be ready for the Lord to take us on unexpected adventures. I think this is as true of the writing adventure as of any other. Because of the connections  we make, we may very well discover opportunities we never dreamed of, opportunities that turn out to be part of God’s plan for us.

The Doors that Swing Open
As we look back on the journey God has led us on and the doors He has caused to swing open before us, I don’t think there’s an individual among us who could say, “I saw that coming.”

A decade ago, I wouldn’t have imagined having coauthored a Paralympian’s memoir and having started on a follow-up volume or having written and recorded hundreds of devotionals for a podcast (HopeStreamRadio). (In fact, ten years ago, I wouldn’t have been able to define podcast.)

The Challenges We Pursue
When we make connections with fellow writers and others in “the industry,” we will hear of opportunities and challenges we were previously unaware of. Take, for example, NaNoWriMo. Tens of thousands of people around the globe set out each November to write 50K words of fiction. This is the first year I am participating, and it is my prayer that God will direct my efforts.

Over time, we will become aware of countless writing and writing-related opportunities, especially with ready access to the internet. There is no way we can pursue them all, not even all those that excite us.

It is especially important that we take the time to ask for wisdom and guidance as we send our words out into the world. Let’s become more deliberate in praying for God’s direction as we do so.


  1. Thank you for these faith building examples!

  2. Thanks, Steph, for an inspiring challenging read. I really related to your words, “As we look back on the journey God has led us on and the doors He has caused to swing open before us, I don’t think there’s an individual among us who could say, “I saw that coming.” God is sometimes a God of surprises.

    1. God truly does show us the way. It is best we follow where he leads. God says, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye.” (Psalm 32:8) Life with God is an adventure. Thanks for sharing about your adventures with God, Stephanie.


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