Tag Archives: prayer

How God Made Me a Writer

As I sit in my recliner, I glance up from my keyboard to gather my wordsmithing thoughts. I suddenly pause. As I take in my surroundings, I am struck once again with the realization of what God has done. He really made this my reality. He really did it. It’s still hard for me to believe. He made me a writer.

I love this recliner. I love that this is my office. I love that wherever I want to take myself and my laptop becomes my office. I love that I can “clock in” and “clock out” on my own time and terms. I love that I can hide inside when it’s cold and never have to commute in the snow anymore. I love that I love my work. I love that God answered my prayer.

I love that God made me a writer.

How it happened

I wasn’t always a writer. At least, not by profession. It’s been my dream since I was old enough to wield a pen, but it took until I was in my 30’s to pursue it. What happened then? Well, God used a snowstorm, a country song, a supportive husband, and encouraging family and friends to make my dream come true.

When I shared my snowstorm story, I promised to fill you in on the details of the process God used to do this, so here it is.

By the time I finally found this career, I had wandered down four other paths. A degree in social work and various jobs in retail, real estate and photography had produced a single realization: I still hadn’t decided what I wanted to be when I grew up.

I guess that’s not entirely true. Like I said, I’ve always wanted to be a writer. The problem was, I just hadn’t figured out how. I didn’t see that as a realistic goal, so I continued to putter along, trying to find something else I could enjoy. And, I actually had. My job as a photographer was a good fit. After several years, though, I realized I still wanted more. Somewhere in my heart I knew that writing was still the best fit.

Starting down a new path

So, I started to dabble. As a school photographer, I had the summers off. This gave me time to pursue side jobs here and there as a freelancer. (Please note the God-at-work aspect of this – providing this job to prepare me for the next one!) I did some web content. A couple blog articles here and there. I found the work exciting, challenging and enjoyable.

However, as I mentioned in my previous post, I saw this simply as a side gig. I didn’t really believe at the time it could be much more. Once God convinced me it could be, I dove in.

Was it scary? Heck yeah! (Read about facing this fear here.)

It was scary to truly go after this goal, but this process was also SOAKED in prayer. I prayed for guidance, for wisdom, for blessings in my writing pursuits. I prayed for God to help me achieve this dream. I prayed. I asked others to pray. We prayed.

And, I put in a lot of hard work. With incredible support from my loving husband, (I kinda thought he was a little crazy when he first told me he thought I could do this full time and be successful at it) and encouragement from my friends and family (whose accountability continues to help me with writing goals today) – I dug in.

What digging in looks like

Like I said, I had already snagged a few writing jobs here and there. Now, though, I didn’t want side jobs. I wanted this to be my only job. My goal was to put together enough regular freelance work from multiple clients that I could do it full time (setting my own hours and working from home).

Achieving this goal required several key steps.

  1. Pray – Frequently and fervently.
  2. Apply for writing jobs – A lot of them. When I really decided to get serious about this, I was applying to at least a dozen jobs some days. (More on where I found these jobs in a later post.)
  3. Pray some more.
  4. Set up a website – You’re lookin’ at it. Previously, I had a blog-only site. I now needed to add info about my writing, including the all-important portfolio. Thankfully, I had those “dabbling” jobs to include on the portfolio page, so potential clients could see samples of my work.
  5. Keep praying.
  6. Choose – Make the leap? Once God brought several opportunities my way, and the writing jobs started building, I had to make an important decision. I had reached a point that I could no longer sustain both jobs – writing and photography. There simply wasn’t enough time in the day. I had to start turning down writing gigs or make the leap and quit my other job. I reached a point when I was making 80% of my photography income through writing. I felt that if I built it up that much, I could quit my photography job and continue to build the writing income to completely replace it (and hopefully grow it even more!) So, that’s what I did. I gave notice to the photography company and officially started working for Nenn Pen, Ink full time on November 1, 2015.
  7. Guess what I did next? Yep – kept praying.

And God continues to answer! He has blessed me with great writing opportunities. He has grown my income to significantly more than I was making before – and I get to do what I enjoy – from home! Praise the Lord!

God would still be an amazingly good, good Father if none of this had happened. But, I am grateful that it did.

I’m thankful that God made me a writer.

This Book Will Change the Way You Serve

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“Serve one another in love.” Galatians 5:13

Do you want to serve but can’t find the time? Maybe you’re unsure what you have to offer. When you think about serving, what comes to mind? Saturdays at the soup kitchen? Mission trips to Mozambique? These are great ministries, but they might not be for you. Maybe it’s time to rethink your definition of serving.

Try this: serve those around you every day. We all encounter ways to serve others in our day-to-day lives, but we often overlook them. 24 Ways To Serve Through Your Day helps you recognize these opportunities and develop a habit of serving. You will discover you don’t have to schedule, scramble or be a superstar to serve. Simply seize the serving opportunities right in front of you. As you do, you’ll develop the heart of a servant and start living a Galatians 5:13 life.

 

24 Ways To Serve Through Your Day is one installment of a four-part series designed to help you live out the greatest commandment: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Mark 12:30 On these pages, you’ll find practical, daily steps to develop a loving, humble heart of serving—a heart dedicated to God’s purposes.

I pray God uses this content to grow you in your love for Him.

Kerry Nenn

Watch for the book’s release in March.

Coming soon: Keep following Nenn Pen, Ink to learn about giveaways happening next month during the book launch!

 

Hot off the presses!

Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

The Northwest Herald has featured the latest book from Nenn Pen, Ink – 24 Ways to Pray Through Your Day. (Newspaper for the NW Suburbs of Chicago).

Locals can find the full-page article on page 4 of the Style section, or read it on the newspaper’s site.

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Praising God for this opportunity! Praying He uses it to bless people with this book.

Read more about the book.

Check out the book’s Facebook page.

Get the book – available in paperback and e-book formats.

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Check Out What’s New! From E-Book to Paperback

The latest e-book from Nenn Pen, Ink is now available in paperback!

Get your copy of 24 Ways To Pray Through Your Day now for just $6.99. Available on Amazon.

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Is your day slipping by without prayer? Do you keep waiting for the perfect time or some peace and quiet? In the midst of the busyness, the stress, the to-do’s and the to-don’ts, those moments never seem to come. They don’t have to. God gives us moments throughout our daily chaos to call out to him. We simply need to recognize them. When we do, prayer is no longer something we try to work into our day. It becomes our day.

Gain insight into these daily prayer opportunities with 24 Ways To Pray Through Your Day and learn two dozen ways to transform each moment of the day into time with God.

“Your spirit will be refreshed and your heart stirred. This is most definitely a must-read book that I know will give you a new perspective on prayer. And you will never pray the same.” ~ Vernita Simmons, Assistant Publisher, Faith Filled Family Magazine.

24 Ways To Pray Through Your Day

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Now available on Amazon!

Is your day slipping by without prayer? Do you keep waiting for the perfect time or some peace and quiet? In the midst of the busyness, the stress, the to-do’s and the to-don’ts, those moments never seem to come. But they don’t have to. God gives us moments throughout our daily chaos to call out to him. We simply need to recognize them. When we do, prayer is no longer something we try to work into our day. It becomes our day.

24 Ways To Pray Through Your Day gives insight into these prayer opportunities and teaches readers two dozen ways to transform each moment of the day into time with God.

Blessed Beyond Measure

I am so excited about this latest opportunity God has provided! If you or someone you know is looking for a transforming prayer tool, please check out my new book.

Visit the 24 Ways Facebook page to see what others are saying and share your own prayer experiences.

I’d love to hear from you!

Thirst

To see your light so bright that it outshines everything else

To hear your voice so loud it drowns out all my other thoughts

To feel your love so immensely that it erases every black emotion

To have your glory flood over my soul so fully that it washes away all else

That your presence would rain down on everything in me, drenching every inch

That no part of me could escape your loving embrace

That no shadow on my heart could exist in the amazing radiance of your grace

That I see you, all of you, so clearly, that my gaze strays nowhere else

For Crying Out Loud

Saturday night: It was one of those movies with an impossible soundtrack. Dialogue is at a near whisper and action scenes threaten to burst eardrums, making it impossible to find a comfortable volume. Not wanting to miss any of the Oscar-caliber acting scenes of 2010: Moby Dick, we opted for cranking it up.
 
Our friends, who appreciate a bad movie as much as we do, were enjoying the whale-chasing with us. Partway through, I was suddenly asked to pause the movie. As I pushed the button, the immediate silence that would have followed was shattered by an ear-piercing “Mom-eeeeee!” from our guest room, where our friends’ children had been put to bed before the movie. Mom quickly ran up to check on them. I sat, amazed at Dad, whose ears had picked up on the cry to which I was oblivious amidst the fray coming through the surround sound.
 
It turns out, we had Ahab and friends pumping through the speakers a bit loud for our friends’ daughter, who was frightened by the blubbery growls. (Little did she know that it was the B-level special effects and acting that should have been giving her nightmares.)
 
A little while later, after fears were calmed and concerns addressed, we resumed our movie at fewer decibels. The incident was soon forgotten.
 
Sunday Morning: Church service. Our pastor preached on Jeremiah 33:3 – Call to me and I will answer you and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.
 
As he spoke about how we are to call out to God, my thoughts (and, I later discovered, my husband’s) immediately went back to the night before. I wish I could put a sound bite here of that cry that was echoing in my mind so clearly. Those little lungs had been calling out with such urgency, intensity, determination, and faith.
Urgency – she needed help, now.
Intensity – you could hear the sheer emotion in her voice.
Determination – she was not going to give up until she was heard over the noise around us.
Faith – she knew her cries would be answerd if she called.
You could tell by the yell that she was just going to continue to ramp up the urgency, intensity, and determination until her parent was by her side. 
“Mom-eeeee!”

Hmm…

She called out. She was calling with everything in her. Her Father heard her.
Are my cries like this?
When I call out to my Father, do I call out with everything I have?
Are my prayers filled with the same qualities as the cries of a child?

I pray they will be from this moment on.