April McGowan


panningIn my last post, I wrote how excited I was to have my books with me at the writer’s conference. They were going to be on the tables for sale, and I would take part in the autograph party. Golden. It was going to be so very cool. I mean, can’t you just see it?  I sure could.

Well, the best-laid plans…

Despite my publisher’s great effort (it was considerable!) and many, many prayers, my books didn’t show up on time. In fact, oh the irony, they arrived on my doorstep the very hour the conference ended. I know this, because my husband texted me when they showed up. Yep.

I was heartbroken. I mean—hadn’t I been planning this for a year? I had everything ready (pens, price stickers, bookmarks) and yet, no books. Do you ever feel like no matter what you do, it just doesn’t pan out? There’s no golden moment, there isn’t even fool’s gold in your pan—just mud.

That’s where I was. Mud. Murky, depressed, bleh. Feeling pretty sorry for myself. I forged ahead and arrived emotionally exhausted at the conference. What was the point? I didn’t have my books! But, I prayed (and many friends prayed) that the Lord would make something out of this, that my attitude would change, and boy, did it ever.

During the conference, I got this message over and over, from just about every one of the speakers. Seriously. But, none said it quite as succinctly as Liz Curtis Higgs: God knows when the timing is just right for Him to get all the glory.

He can handle my book order. I mean, haven’t I trusted Him with harder issues than that? He is God. And if things didn’t work out according to my plans, it was because He had a different one. I’m not sure of all the lessons I learned, but here’s the biggest one: I had to have my plans tumbled just so I’d hear what I needed to (which also, was considerable) from all the speakers. I even got the courage to share about my novel with someone, and quite frankly, I wouldn’t have done so otherwise.

Do you ever feel like God’s out to thwart your plans? Have you taken time to consider His plans might be even better than the one you’ve imagined?

Isaiah 55: 8-9 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Full text here).





  1. Melody
    Aug 24, 2013

    Very well put, April. I couldn’t agree more. I needed to hear this message at the conference too.

    • April
      Aug 25, 2013

      Doesn’t it seem that every year, we hear just what we need to, Melody? God’s got such wide plans, it’s hard for us to see them at the time. Blessings!

  2. Alero Folayan
    Aug 25, 2013

    Thank you for sharing this. I’m glad and reminded that God is interested in every single detail that concerns us His children. I am encouraged to let Him know all my worries even to the tiniest detail. And to trust that in His own time he will make it good!

    • April
      Aug 25, 2013

      Alero, that was my take-away, too. If he can handle the big things, he certainly can handle the little ones, and vice versa! He’s got us in His mighty grip.

  3. Jenny Leo
    Aug 25, 2013

    This is a great and timely post, April. I have a tendency to hand God a bullet-pointed list of exactly how I think things should go, lol. Time and time again He has shown me that His plans for me are so much better. I loved meeting you at OCW and look forward to seeing you there again.

    • April
      Aug 25, 2013

      Jenny, it was great meeting you, too! Such a small world we live in. If you ever run across folks from Northside, tell them April (Allan and Carol’s daughter) says, “hi.” By the way, I love your blog! I can’t wait for a wise publisher to pick you up so I can read your novels 🙂 Many blessings!

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