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One Foot After Another

My nine-year-old son is an Encourager. I have never known a little boy with such a gift of encouraging people. There is not a day goes by that I don't hear him telling his sissy that she is good at something, or a picture she made is beautiful, or telling me I am the "best mom ever". As a writer in the throes of the slow, winding road towards publication, there are days when my little man's sweet words are a balm to my oft-discouraged soul. But even then, there are times when I question where I am headed on that road, or if it's even the road I am meant to follow. What I have discovered is that when the path I am on is a God-directed path, He is faithful to send encouragement along the way, sometimes in unexpected ways, in order to keep me walking forward instead of meandering. When I questioned if I would ever be a mother after seven years of marriage, I called out to Him in discouragement and He practically dropped a precious baby boy out of the sky into our family through adoption. When we were surprised by an adoption agency with a super-fast placement (with our daughter) and I was discouraged that we did not have all the finances in place, He miraculously brought us every single penny (and more) that we needed. When I wasn't sure whether anyone would ever read my late-night scribblings and considered throwing in the towel, I got a call that I was a Semi-Finalist in the ACFW Genesis Contest for unpublished authors. When I questioned (again) whether my novel would ever attract the attention of anyone in the publishing industry, I won the Frasier Award through My Book Therapy, and had requests for my manuscript at the ACFW Conference. Through these miraculous encouragements, and many, many more, I have learned that when I am following the plan of God, He will keep opening the doors and gently guiding me along the way, like the kind shepherd that He is. There are times when I have refused to follow his leading, making m