Enjoy these thoughts, memories and reflections.
Greeting the Unexpected
Have you ever had your week nicely planned, ready to go, and then something happens and it all falls apart? That happened to me this week. I was expecting to enjoy a week-long retreat in North Carolina with my Brigit sisters. We planned this months ago. I bought all the ingredients for the food I planned to prepare for a meal. I bought the food necessary for a Sunday School picnic on Saturday before going to the retreat. Then I got an email...
Thanks for coming
Last Saturday, I had my first book signing event. One lady walked into the Cedar Springs Christian Store, looked to her right and saw me. She mouthed, "Are you an author?" I said, "Yes." She came over and said she was also a writer. We talked about that and the Authors Guild. Another arrival was a friend from graduate school I hadn't heard from in nearly 20 years. As I signed her book, we caught up on a few things. It was great.
I'm launching out into unknown territory again
This week, I've been on my first podcast, Read My Lips, Cool conversations with creatives. It was a lot of fun and the link will be available soon.
Authors like to write, not market
As with most authors I've talked with, our passion is writing. However, if no one knows what you've written, it defeats the purpose. So, for the last three years, I've been part of Women in Publishing (WIP). Alexa Bigwarfe is amazing. She has created so many resources for authors to learn how to market, publish, write and sell their books. I have learned SO much. I got started during the COVID pandemic as WIP put on a virtual summit. It was worth every penny. Afterwards, I joined their mentor program and again, picked up so many ideas. It also built my confidence and courage.
by Leoma Gilley
John 15: 9 Remain intimately at home in my love. (The Message)
Visitors are met at the door.
Residents just come and go.
Visitors may be invited in.
Residents know they belong.
Visitors are told where they can go.
Residents enjoy the run of the house.
Into the Unknown
Where is your HOPE?
Psalm 42:11 says, "I will put my hope in God!"
In reflecting on these words, I decided to put the emphasis in different places. Here's what I discovered.
I will put my hope in God. This is a choice that I have to make. No one can do it for me.
I WILL put my hope in God. This is a decision that I must actively pursue. It won't just happen.
I will PUT my hope in God I will turn loose of my fears and worries, and give them to the One who loves me best.
Not How I Planned It
A New Series Is On The Way
Ramadan begins on April 2, 2022
Reflection for Psalm 31:21
Praise the LORD, for he has shown me the wonders of his unfailing love. (Psalm 31:21 NLT)
When I was young, I knew about your love.
As I faced various disasters and challenges, I felt your love.
As I moved into new and varied cultures, made mistakes, burned out, I learned of your unfailing love.
As I wait on you, listen for your voice, hear you call my name, I begin to behold the wonder of your unfailing love.
A task unfinished
I have a task and there’s a deadline
Don’t know what the deadline is—
Just that there is one.
Happy Birthday, Mom
On this 24th day of December 2021, my precious mother, Frances Mable Christabel Tripp Gilley, would be 103. She left us 10 years ago, and it is hard to believe that much time has passed. I still miss her.
I have a Lover who waits for me;
Offers me love and blessings for free.
He promised any good gift, you see
If I accepted his ransom for me.
Tis the Season
It is also the season for craft fairs, that present us with a great opportunity to BUY LOCAL. Recently I've attended several of these shows, as a vendor. I sell my books, and it is fascinating to watch how people respond to a table filled with physical books. They either look the other way and keep at a safe distance or light up and rush over to look.
I grew up among water and trees
but recently learned forest bathing frees
us from stress, relieves depression, gives rest.
"Come sit with Me at water's edge."
"Maybe later" I always pledge.
But how can I stop? So much to do.
When is there time to follow through?
Living in Lockdown in Uganda
As we watch the horror, chaos and trauma that is today's Afghanistan, our hearts go out to the many who want to leave but can't. We feel for those who have left, but are still in an in between (liminal) space, having left, but not yet having arrived. My book Praying for BIG Things has a whole section on praying for refugees, miggrants and others in stressful situations. Here is a prayer against discouragement.
Life is like a box of chocolates...
I admit it; I was too confident. I’m fully vaccinated. I tested negative when I got on the plane. Then I got to Uganda and was in contact with two COVID-19 positive people. Sometimes I had failed to wear my mask, after all, I’m vaccinated. Right? Wrong.
For the past few days, I felt achy and lethargic. I dragged myself to class, returning to my room to collapse on my bed. My allergies started kicking in, so I started treating them. Then I got the “runs”, which I still have. I think that may be giardia (my not so favorite friend and frequent companion in Africa). Today the tiredness was just beyond what I could stand, and just walking around made breathing difficult. I felt like I had a low-grade fever, so asked Margaret to give me a COVID test. Yes, I’m positive. I’m the 3rd teacher on the course to fall to this.