I want them to realize that life is about so much more than “happily ever after.” I put a lot of emphasis on fairytales in the book because fairytales are generally the first exposure a girl has to romance. You’ve probably heard the quote, “Walt Disney gave me unrealistic expectations of men,” but I think that goes against everything Walt Disney stood for. Disney believed in dreams and he created (or recreated) heroines that lived their dreams. Prince Charming was always the end of the story – after the dream had been realized. I want readers to put my book down and walk away with a “once upon a time” wonder. I want her to know that a ring on her finger is not what gives her significance; only God can do that. Yes, Beyond Waiting is a relationship book, but the heart of the message has nothing to do with a guy. It’s about a girl, her God, and her dream.
I, too, have noticed this trend and it makes me wonder, “Well, doggone it, what did I write this book for?!?!” But then I get excited and realize, “Yes, yes! People are finally getting it!” I think the timing is everything. I mean, I started working on this project two years ago because I couldn’t find much about singleness that wasn’t focused on preparation for a future spouse. (Which, granted, life tends to prepare you for the next stage in life, so of course singleness is a preparation for marriage, BUT I don’t believe marriage should be the FOCUS of singleness.) So, if God knew that, in two years time, someone else would grasp this concept, why did He argue me into writing this book? I guess it’s because He knew that Beyond Waiting would become a movement. Now is the time for singles to rise up and embrace the call of God on their lives. Now is the time for us to talk about the extraordinary life God has for us here and now – in THIS moment. I can’t wait to see the affect this movement will have made a few years into the future.
Hmm… This is a really hard question. I wonder how much Beyond Waiting has shaped my life and then I wonder how much my life has shaped my view on Beyond Waiting. It’s hard to immerse yourself in a concept for two years and then try to envision life any other way. Sometimes I think about it – how I had my life all figured out by the time I was eight and how different my life looks now that I’m twenty-one. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like if I were living the life I thought I’d be living. It’s hard to grasp. Hard to envision. I can say that I’m glad my life isn’t the life I had planned. I love the excitement and adventure of watching God’s plan unfold day by day (even though I often get nervous and wish I could see a little deeper into my future).
What I love most about this Beyond Waiting journey is that I KNOW I’m living in the center of God’s will for my life right now. I feel His pleasure and I feel pleasure in doing what I was made to do. If I were caught up in trying to find a guy – if I were allowing marriage to be my focus – I’d be discouraged, because as of now, there’s no romantic relationship in my life. I want that one day more than anything, but right now it’s not happening and I have to be okay with that. It’s a trust issue. As I’m watching God throw open these doors into the writing world – as my first book is being published and I’m watching this dream come true – I’m trusting that He will take care of the details. And I trust that one day, He’s going to open a door and I’ll find my future husband standing there. But in the meantime, I’m living life to the fullest. I think the greatest thing Beyond Waiting has done for me is replaced my anxiety with an excitement. I’ve come to realize that there is joy in the journey and delight in knowing that the God who shaped the expanse of the universe is also shaping the details of my life.
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