(In memory of Bryan)
Let it be yesterday,
Let me go back in time,
And hug you,
And hold you tight,
And tell you “No,
Don’t do it!”
We will never get over you.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”–Jeremiah 29:11
*Do not suffer in silence. Speak out and tell someone if you are struggling with suicidal thoughts. The National Suicide Hotline. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255) any time of the day or night.
**One of the aims of Draw Near’s upcoming anthology called Laments is to communicate our struggles instead of wrestling in silence. Please consider submitting an essay that conveys the challenges in your life and the hope you have in Christ.
Draw Near is currently accepting submissions for a new free ebook. This publication will consist of personal essays. All essay submissions should be under 1,000 words. The theme is childhood. The essay should capture a single day or event that happened during your childhood. The situation or event could be good or bad, but please close your essay with a positive message on how it helped you in life. Some possible themes for your essay could be living in the country/city, growing up with two parents or only one parent, being raised in a Christian/non-Christian household, living in a rich/poor family, being popular/unpopular in school, etc. Simply give the reader an idea of what it was like to be you as a child and a sliver of wisdom from your experience. Need help? Do not hesitate to request free assistance from Draw Near’s editor.
Carefully read the following guidelines before submitting.
- Email your personal essay to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submit in the body of the email or as an attachment (.doc, .docx, .pdf). Avoid using special fonts and formats (such as centering, italics, etc). Include the title and “by” line in the email. (A pen name is okay.)
- You may include a short biography (optional). If your work is selected, Draw Near will share your bio in a blog. The bio must be in third person and consist of no more than three sentences. One link to your personal website or social media is acceptable.
- Draw Near will accept work that you have published on the internet (on your website or a public forum). However, we are not interested in manuscripts that have already been accepted for publication by other publishers. Simultaneous submissions are accepted. Please notify us immediately if your writing is accepted elsewhere.
- Submit only one personal essay. Submissions with indecent words or subjects will be rejected without consideration.
- The deadline is when full. Please submit as soon as possible.
- Unfortunately, you will not be paid for your submission. Please submit only if you wish to glorify God and help others draw near to Christ. All submissions will be considered and acknowledged. However, Draw Near will only accept quality writing that adheres to these guidelines for publication.
- PLEASE READ THIS IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT RIGHTS!!! By submitting a creative work:
- you certify you are the author of the creative work.
- you agree to give the publisher rights to publish your creative work in a single publication.
- you authorize the publisher to make this publication available in print and electronic formats.
- you agree to allow the publisher to post this publication on this website and other websites designed for hosting print and electronic formats.
- you retain the copyright to your work.
- you will be credited for your creative work (either as your real or pen name).
Still interested? Send your personal essay to email@example.com today!
In the Holman Christian Standard Bible, 1Corinthians 3:9 is rendered “For we are God’s coworkers…” I remember reading that verse for the first time with some shock and disbelief. Me? I am a coworker of God? How could little ol’ me be a coworker of God? His work is so perfect and important. How could I be a coworker? Yet the Bible does not lie so it must be true. That is my identity. I am a coworker of God along with all of my brothers and sisters in Christ. What an absolute privilege!
Let me be clear. I am not a pastor, Christian musician, or on the church staff. God has blessed me with some talent to write and the desire to serve God with it. 1Peter 4:10 reminds us to use gifts to serve one another as faithful stewards of His grace. This makes our service not only a privilege but also an act of obedience.
Matthew 5 reminds us that we are the light of the world and that men do not light a lamp with the intention of hiding it. They put it on display! Our Father has given His children the light of the Holy Spirit and ignited talent in us to be the hands and feet of Jesus. Today, I encourage you to use your talent (no matter what it is) to serve God. If you are reading this and happen to have the talent to write poetry, please consider joining in Draw Near’s effort to glorify God and help others draw near to Christ by submitting a poem for the upcoming free ebook called Blessed Creation: A Christian Poetry Collection. (See the details on the Call for Submissions page.)