I’ve heard of divine appointments, but it wasn’t until recently that I experienced one for myself. Others have told me about the feeling of awe in God’s power, but feeling it firsthand is something entirely different.

I recently attended a writing conference in North Carolina. Since about November of last year, I’ve been having serious bouts of doubts and depression over my writing. Sometimes it has gotten so bad that I can barely function. I’ve tried walking to release the pressure, upping my vitamin D, and putting on a happy face for those that just don’t get it.

Inside, however, I’ve been slowly breaking down. I have prayed for a sign from God to show me that my writing is from Him. I needed some sort of solid proof that God gave me this gift to use.

While at the writing conference, things started off not in my favor. The agent I desperately wanted to meet with didn’t have any open slots, and I wasn’t able to find his table during mealtimes to talk either. I signed up for my second choices and upon the urgings of a friend, I signed up for an editor I had never really thought about meeting with.

As the classes went by and my appointment day had arrived, one of my other writing friends  managed to meet with my first agent choice and received a request for a proposal. My mood plummeted. Not that I wasn’t grateful for my friend, but because I felt like that was the sign I had asked for but dreaded getting.

But then something amazing happened. I happened to be on the same elevator as that agent, and he asked about my writing, and after I told him, he requested a proposal from me. My mood did an about face, and I wondered if that was God’s hand on my life. Funny how God became accredited with the bad news automatically,but not the good news.

The next day, I waffled with meeting the editor my friend had told me about. I thought I’d go and erase my name, but something told me not to. So I went about my day until it came time for my appointment. I walked into the room full of tables where each agent, editor, or mentor had a space so they could meet with conference attendees. I walked to the back table, and stood in line for my turn.

Another woman walked up and said she was next to meet with the editor. Confused, I looked at the paper (where I had signed up and even written down the time in my planner) but my name was not there. I wrote it in pen, yet there had been no marking through my name. It was as if my name had never been scrawled on that line.

Stunned, I glanced around the room and then studied the paper once more. Another editor walked up to the table and said I could meet with her. I agreed and handed over my first chapter. She read it as I wrung my hands fidgeted with the hem of my shirt. It’s not easy to sit still while someone is reading over your work.

Once she finished, she smiled and said, “You write beautifully.” I sat back in my chair. Those were the words I’d been begging to hear from someone in the industry. She gave me pointers on how to make the story better. But she thought my writing was worth the effort to give me help.

Sitting here now, in front of my computer, I wonder what would have happened if I hadn’t signed up for that slot and just went about my conference. Because of that divine appointment, I received another proposal request for my work. And God answered my prayers about my writing.

Never underestimate the power of God. He can erase a name scrawled in pen just to put you on His path.

Psalm 37:23 The steps of a man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way.

Janie Winsell

Janie Winsell

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, "plans to prosper and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”