Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Gems in Atlanta

I have been in Atlanta the last week, and it has been packed with good things and great things. Have you noticed that often the great things are things that aren't planned, and come in small packages?

On Saturday night, I attended the Christy Awards - frankly, my favourite awards show in our industry. While the Christys honor fiction authors, they recognized Phyllis Tickle with a special lifetime achievement award this year.

If you don't know who Phyllis is, perhaps you should. In a nutshell, Phyllis took Christian books into the mainstream by working with Publishers Weekly magazine to start reviewing books written by Christians with spiritual themes, whether they be fiction or non-fiction. In so doing, she broke ground and allowed us to reach people with the written word who might otherwise never consider reading a 'Christian' or spiritual book. I am grateful that she did so.

Phyllis is also funny, wise, and an accomplished author. I am so grateful to have women like her as role models in this work we do - although there are very few. Her acceptance speech was one of those that you want to memorize, as it was profound all in and of itself. One thing Phyllis said was exceptionally profound to me, and served as a challenge to me as I keep serving in this industry, as my ministry and as my work.

Phyllis said,

“Let us say, we have worked in these fields,

we have enjoyed the crop,

and have loved the landowner that we serve."

May I continue to work in the fields that God gives me, enjoy the harvest and the crop He provides, and may I, above all else, love the Landowner that I serve. He is amazing.

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