I was cradling my newborn son when my husband brought the package in from the porch and opened it next to me.
Inside was my early author’s copy of my book: Ask Me Anything, Lord: Opening Our Lives to God’s Questions. It was the first time I held it in my hands, the first time I’d seen the actual book with my own eyes instead of just a picture file sent to me by the publisher.
There I sat holding two physical reminders of God’s blessing and grace in my hands: a precious baby boy and a brand new book.
So, today I’m celebrating with a giveaway!!! Because joy like that you just can’t keep all to yourself!
I’ll be giving away two autographed copies of the book to two different winners.
Here’s how to enter:
You earn one entry into the giveaway for each of these things, but in order for your entry to count, you need to comment to THIS POST letting me know how you entered.
Entry Opportunity #1: Leave me a reply to this question at the bottom of today’s post: (Yes, it needs to be here and not on Facebook please!)
If you wrote a book about your life or what God has been teaching you, what would it’s title be?
Entry Opportunity #2: Share this post on Facebook and leave a comment below saying, “I shared on Facebook.”
Entry Opportunity #3: Share this post on Twitter and leave a comment below saying, “I tweeted this post.”
Each entry needs to be a separate comment please! The individual comments are your separate entries.
I can’t wait to hear from you!
Entries can be posted any time between now and midnight on October 31st. I’ll announce the winners using a random number generator on next Friday’s post (11/1). I can only ship within the United States, so please keep that in mind when entering.
Have you already ordered your copy of the book? That’s okay! Maybe you could win a copy to share with a friend, a women’s ministry leader, a family member or to give as a Christmas gift!
If you don’t win the giveaway or one copy just isn’t enough, here’s what you need to know:
The book will also be available on e-readers (like nook and Kindle) and in some local Christian book stores in November 2013.
And now, on to the promised weekly excerpt from my book. I hope you enjoy!!!
Jacob wrestled with the Angel of the Lord all night and when the first signs of day started breaking through the darkness, “the man asked him, ‘What is your name?’” (Genesis 32:27-28, NIV).
It’s such a deceptively simple question. We know our names. It’s one of the first words we learn to respond to, one of the first words we learn to write with our tiny hands gripped around a pencil and guided by our moms and dads.
Who we are wrapped up in a few letters and typed up on our birth certificate and Social Security card.
Sometimes, though, it’s not so easy to remember what our name is.
A few weeks ago, I was sound asleep and slowly awakened into consciousness by a sound traveling across the house, into my room, and all the way into my two ears so comfortably laid on my pillow: “Mama, mama, MA-ma, ma-MA, mama, mama, mama . . .”
From the time I put feet to floor and walked the tiny space between my room and my baby’s room, I had heard “mama” 62 times. It was never an upset cry or a yell, just a determined and incessant calling out for me. And in those few moments between my bed and her crib, I longingly recalled the days when my name used to be Heather.
Is that what my name had been? Most days it really isn’t anymore. Perhaps you find yourself in this position, too—so defined by roles, that your true identity is shrouded in mystery and long since lost. Are there days when you feel like your deep-down soul is buried under mounds of roles and expectations? You aren’t you anymore—you’re “Mom,” “Wife,” “Daughter,” “Employee.”
It’s as if we no longer wear nametags at events; we just post job descriptions to our shirts and that’s how people come to know us. We meet, we shake hands. They say, “So, _______, what do you do?” We answer and suddenly that’s how they know us, not by who we are, but by what we do.
Nicole Johnson wrote and performed a skit about a woman who uses a label maker to define and categorize everyone around her, even to the point of hurtfulness when she labels her young daughter “fat.” Do you ever feel like your face is obscured by neon-colored labels printed out and stuck all over you by the people you meet every day?
These labels oversimplify who we really are, transforming us from a dynamic person with unique feelings and thoughts into “working mom” or “stay-at-home mom,” “church-goer,” “liberal,” “conservative.” People often think they know us by the box they have placed us in. Sometimes we even forget that we aren’t defined by labels and roles and categories and boxes. Then we wake up one morning and feel like somewhere along the way, we’ve just gotten lost.
God doesn’t lose sight of us, though.
Even when we forget our name and the essence of ourselves, He remains intimately aware of us, His creation. Part of God’s unfathomably deep love for us is that He never overlooks our complexities. Isaiah tells us:
“God says, ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. . . Since you were precious in My sight, You have been honored, And I have loved you;’” (Isaiah 43:1, 4 NKJV).
Later, Isaiah writes:
But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me, the Lord has forgotten me.” “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands” (Isaiah 49:14-16, NIV).
God knew Jacob’s name. He didn’t need to ask. It’s the same with us. He knows exactly who we are and what has brought us to this place.
Yet, He draws us into closer intimacy with Him by asking the question, “What is your name?” He wants to remind us that individuals matter to Him. He isn’t just a Savior who died for all humanity; He died for you and me and every other person uniquely and specifically.
Taken from Ask Me Anything, Lord,© 2013 by Heather King. Used by permission of Discovery House Publishers, Grand Rapids, Michigan. 49501. All rights reserved. www.dhp.org.
Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer and worship leader. Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness. Her book, Ask Me Anything, Lord: Opening Our Hearts to God’s Questions, is now available! To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.
Copyright © 2013 Heather King