Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Timely Lesson

I had waited for months. My article had been accepted. It was to be published in January or February. January came and went. February is rapidly coming to a close. Two days ago I decided to call the magazine publisher. The young lady on the other end of the line was extremely courteous and eager to help. She remembered reading my article, yet was unable to find it as she searched through recent editions of the magazine. I gave her my number and she assured me she would give me a status update as soon as she located my article.

The call came yesterday. The managing editor was so grateful for my call of the previous day. She let me know I had cleared up a growing mystery. I was stunned to find out why. My article had indeed been published in their January issue. The only problem was, the by-line had been credited to another author! Major oops! Puzzled, the other author had called them to let them know that she had not written the article. Now this was a problem!

The editor apologized profusely and assured me that a note of correction would be printed in the magazine's April edition. Great! I was trying to imagine readers eagerly scanning the magazine's April correction column and thinking, "Oh, that fantastic article I read in the January edition was really by Maria Morgan and not Ms. So-And-So! She's a good writer, I'll have to check out her blog and other articles she's written!" Not likely...

Then it hit me. All I could do was laugh. The Lord knew I needed a lesson in humility. I'd been more interested in adding that piece to my 'published articles' list, than just allowing God to use it in whatever way He saw fit. Now He had my attention, and humble pie was on the menu!

It's so easy to drift. Unless I consciously submit my writing to the Lord on a daily basis and allow Him to use it, I begin to compare myself with other writers and feel myself slipping into 'competition' mode. It IS important to do my best. Not for the wrong reason - my glory. But always for the right reason - for the honor and glory of God.

The book of Proverbs contains a wealth of wisdom. As the wisest man on earth, King Solomon put things in the proper perspective, "The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility" (Proverbs 15:33; KJV). Eyes must be focused on Him and not self. Things done for the advancement of His kingdom, not my own advancement. I'm reminded of the words of John the Baptist, "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30). Something that doesn't come naturally. I must consciously decide to submit to His will. "...Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me" (Mark 8:34b).

When I choose to clothe myself with humility, take a look at the great gift I receive, "...for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble" (1 Peter 5:5c). His gift of grace. What my dictionary defines as, "the state of being protected or sanctified by the favor of God." Wow! I'll take God's grace over credit for an article any day!

In addition to learning a valuable lesson, there is a silver lining to my experience. The managing editor said they loved my writing and encouraged me to continue sending them articles that will be published with my by-line! Isn't God good?! What lesson is God teaching you, today?


  1. Maria...don't feel alone...I've learned this lesson in humility! I love how God uses our circumstances...good and bad to get us refocused upon Him!
    Blessings to you sister!

  2. Cherie - Thanks for your words of encouragement! Focusing on Him is SO important! Have a fantastic day! God bless!

  3. Many articles to come...GOD BLESS!!

  4. Andrea - You're so sweet! May God use each and every one for His honor and glory!! God bless you!

  5. Ouch, I have had these from my Heavenly Father, I am learning more quickly to re-focus.
    And I know that Father God has a plan and purpose for your life. He is also very gentle and loving. He is amazing.
    Be bless. xxx

  6. Oh my, what a lesson! What a blessing to know that they liked your writing and want more in the future. Congratulations on that accomplishment, and for handling things with such grace. The Lord does have a sense of humor in the way He teaches us things.
    Blessings to you and your readers:)

  7. Raymonde - Refocusing is the key! It's such a comfort to know that God does have a purpose and plan for each one of us! Thanks for your words of encouragement! Special blessings to you!:)

    Karen - A lesson indeed! Rather humorous looking back on it! They've approved a second article and are targeting an April/May publication date. Have a fantastic day!

  8. We all run into these snafus from time to time. A recent submission ended up in the editor's SPAM file even though I followed their subject line instructions.

    Susan :)

  9. Maria,

    Thanks for sharing your story. What an inspiration to me to remember that God's timing doesn't always match mine but He knows best!

  10. A great lesson, one we all have experienced, one that we should take to heart.
    Thanks for such genuine, honest sharing.

  11. *Smiling* Oh, we're a lot alike! I'd feel the same way. But you have the right attitude!

  12. Susan - Ugh! Hope you got your issue resolved! And hope you have a favorable outcome! It's good to know these 'funny' things happen to all of us! God bless! :)

    VKT - Welcome! I'm glad my entry could be an inspiration to you. You're absolutely right that God's timing doesn't always match ours, but we can be assured that He knows best!

    I post on Mondays and Thursdays. Please stop by often! Looking forward to checking out your blog. God bless!

  13. Susan - You're welcome! Have a very blessed weekend!

    Jill - What a compliment to hear that I'm like you!! :) I'm trying to maintain the right attitude!! Have a positively perfect weekend! God bless!

  14. Maria, thank you for sharing this. Really. I struggle alot with humility- it's an old flesh tendency that arises every now and then. I know you know what I mean.

    God is so gracious and kind- isn't He?! That He would choose us to choose Him!

  15. Tamika - Thanks for your honesty! It's so nice to hear that others share similar struggles! I'm forever grateful to God for His patience with me and graciousness toward me! Have a super blessed weekend! :)

  16. Good good post! I love that you were asked to submit more and maybe because our that error you have a deeper connection with them. And who knows who needed to read your article--whether it was signed by you or not:))

  17. We almost have to laugh when God throws a little humility lesson our way like that, don't we?

    You are blessed!

  18. God has taken me through the painstaking process of showing me how much of what I do and say is rooted in pride. It's painful. I'm so thankful He's daily purging me (I'm a slow learner) and covering me with His grace when I screw up.

    It's such a fine line when you are submitting works for publication, isn't it? On the one hand, we need to do a bit of self-promotion, or no one will know we exist. On the other hand, we need to remain humble and let God open the doors for us. If you ever figure out how to balance those two, let me know.

    Love your blog. Thanks for finding me.