Quit? Or Try Again?

I tried for almost three years to start a writers conference in North Carolina.

Nothing worked. And I didn’t hear God tell me to “try again.”

The secretary at the Billy Graham school said, “Pray about it.”

I said, “I’ve prayed for two and a half years.”

She said, “Try again.”

Not expecting anything, I prayed again. I tried again. I told God I would like to be the secretary, but if I were a hindrance, I’d move aside.

I became the secretary, the registrar, and the director of the Blue Ridge Conference for twenty-five years before turning it over to Alton Gansky.

Refusing to quit

Acts 16:7 documents where Paul and Silas had specific plans for a preaching ministry, but “the spirit of Jesus would not allow them to.”

Paul might have said, “If God loved me, he would have let me go to Bithynia. I’m going home.”

Instead, Acts 16:10 says, “We got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.”

Reassessing failure

Sometimes I make my plans, I submit my work, and it is rejected.

I should listen to God, who might be saying, as he did to Paul and Silas, “That’s a good thing you planned, but it’s not My plan for you.”

Or He might speak through another who says, “You’re not a failure. You just have more to learn. Try again.”

Before I submit my work to an agent or editor, a greater peace resides in my heart when I first submit my plans to God.


Yvonne Lehman is an award-winning author with more than 3 million books in print. She now directs the Blue Ridge “Autumn in the Mountains” Novelist Retreat. Her latest releases include eight ebooks for Barbour’s Truly Yours line and A Knight to Remember (Barbour Heartsong). Let it Snow and a series of romances set in Savannah, Georgia, are scheduled for release by Harlequin Heartsong in 2013.


Photo Credit: © olly – Fotolia.com


  1. says

    How interesting to learn how the Blue Ridge Conf. came into existence! I’m not far from there, in WV. Hoping to attend some year soon–I’ve heard nothing but great things about it.

    And wise advice. The key is listening for when God wants us to keep pushing ahead and for when He wants us to switch paths. HARD to do sometimes!

  2. says

    Reading stories like this makes me remember the old adage: If you want to hear God laugh, tell Him your plans. This is such a great reminder. He knows the plans He has for you, and we all know those plans are to prosper you and not to harm you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *