I've decided on the theme for the Tea this year," my mom announced as we chatted in her sun room. "A Storybook Christmas. And Karina agreed to be the speaker."
Every year Mom hosted a Christmas Tea in her home. The church ladies marked it on their calendars weeks in advance. Besides the use of tea cups and china, Mom had a knack for putting together an uplifting program meant to encourage all who came.
Several weeks later, Mom called. "Karina didn't realize they would be away the weekend of the Tea." She paused. "Would you consider sharing with the ladies? I thought with your writing experience . . ."
"Oh, Mom," I jumped in. "I don't think so, but I'll pray with you about it." And I did. When she asked me again a week or so later, I gave her the same answer.
The next day, as I prayed, ideas for the tea began to brew in my mind. I grabbed a pencil and jotted them down as they came to me. By evening, I called my mom. "What about this?"
The event generated the usual warm sparkle--with ladies crowding into Mom's living and dining rooms, some even sitting on the floor. I enjoyed speaking to these wonderful friends--a second family to my parents.
The next day, I glanced over my notes before filing them away. Wait! Could my twenty minute talk be used as a Bible study? I even drew lines on the pages to mark off chapter divisions. With the encouragement of my writers' group, I began to write a study, which eventually turned into a non-fiction book. Only bits and pieces of those early drafts made it into my upcoming book, Penned Without Ink, but my mother's Christmas Tea in 2010 proved to be a stepping stone in that direction. At the time, I had no idea the years, the grit, the vulnerability that would be required of me. Yet God did.
Have you ever said no to an opportunity only to find yourself pursuing it? Perhaps God's faithfulness in moments like these carries us more than we realize.
Photos from Google Images