A few weeks ago, when I told the sistas in my Totally Devoted marketplace gatherings that I finally FINISHED Totally Devoted 3, I think I gave the impression that it was ready for the publisher to deliver it to the public! Whoa! No! Not yet! There's so much more to do before I can send it to my publisher/friends @ Yawn's Publishing.
Yes, I finished writing all 31 devotions for Totally Devoted 3, but the manuscript is now at the editor. Then it has to come back to me to actually make the corrections on my computer. Then I have to finish collecting all the photos (31 of them) and caption each one of them. I designed the front cover on November 30, 2011. (In 2010, the inspiration came to create a Totally Devoted trilogy in a boxed set so I already knew the titles and colors of the three books before they existed.)
I realized this morning I have much more to do before my third book is able to come to life. And it was at that moment I saw that publishing a book -- well, self-publishing anyway -- is similiar to the description of Ezekiel 37 and the Valley of the Dry Bones. All of the pieces have to come together for it to have life! In Ezekiel 37, it says God led the prophet Ezekiel into the middle of a valley of dry bones. He led him back and forth among the bones and the "bones were very dry." (Ezekiel 37:2). Then God asked Ezekiel, "'Son of man, can these bones live?" Ezekiel said, "O Sovereign LORD, you alone know."' (Ezekiel 37:3)
Totally Devoted 3 will be published when God breathes life into it and I in obedience continue to do my part. Right now I'm in the same place where God is telling Ezekiel to tell the dry bones that the LORD "will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you and you will come to life. The you will know that I am the LORD." (Ezekiel 37:5-6.) Well, as for me, I have the front cover completed, the rough manuscript is completed, and I have most of my pictures picked out. I think I'm probably been in the "tendons" stage for several months because other things had captured my attention.
And Ezekiel did what God commanded and he heard "a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them but there was no breath in them" (Ezekiel 37:7-8).Today I think I have reached the "rattling" stage because I finished the back cover design! Praise the Lord!
The LORD told Ezekiel to call for the breath of life to come into the dead and "breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet" (Ezekiel 37:9-10).
I am totally dependent on God to bring life into Totally Devoted 3. I'm believing God inspired me to write devotional books for HIS glory and to tell others who HE is through my books and speaking engagements! In early 2010 I was inspired with the idea to write a trilogy of devotions but Totally Devoted 3 is filled and I'm still getting inspiration of several more devotional messages! I have these extra devotions written in my journal.
Now what, Lord? I'm stepping out in faith and Totally Devoted 4 is in the valley of my heart waiting to see if God wants to breath life into it, too.
O Sovereign LORD, only you know.