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Doug Creamer: Sharing our experience

             Last week the Thomasville Public Library pulled off an amazing feat. They gathered 23 local authors together so we could meet the public and share our stories. Some of the authors did readings from their books. There were authors of children’s books, poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. They had all the bases covered.
            It was an outstanding opportunity for me to meet some of my local readers. We all brought our books in hopes of selling a few copies. I took the opportunity to meet some of my colleagues and hear their writing stories while I was there. There were some gifted people with some great stories there. It was interesting to see how each of us longed in our own unique way to tell our story.
            There were two  interesting people who came to talk with the authors in the area where I was set up. The first was a young man who had recently discovered the love of reading. He told us about some books he enjoyed. He wondered where authors came up with their ideas. Several of us shared with him how we came up with our characters and developed our stories. He listened with wide-eyed enthusiasm.
            The second person was a woman who was working on a story of her own. She had several of us engaged as she shared her story. She asked our advice and for some guidance on the process of publishing her story. She was very interesting and I wish her well.
            One thing I got out of the experience was sharing with other writers how they practice their craft and find ways to reach their audience. Each writer came from different backgrounds yet we all shared one thing in common, the deep desire to express ourselves and touch people with our words.
            The more I reflect back on last weekend the more I realize we need to find ways to be doing the same thing in our churches. We need to find ways to share our stories and experiences with each other. I want to know what makes you tick. I want to know what adversities you faced and how you overcome them in your life.
             There is a good chance that you have overcome things that I struggle with and that I have found ways to defeat things in my life that could help you in yours. When we share our joys and pains with each other we can rejoice and pray in specific ways for each other. We can help each other through the pain and struggles to the place of victory.
            Can you imagine how effectively a recovered alcoholic can help the addicted learn the path to freedom? Doesn’t it seem wise to have someone who struggled with debt and learned how to balance their lives teach those who are drowning in debt? Each of us has found victory in different areas of our lives and we need to learn how to share our stories so we can encourage and give hope to those who feel trapped.
            Life is not perfect and we all face spiritual battles. I need to know what you learned and how you found healing for your scars. I need your powerful prayers that come from experience to help me defeat the enemy who seems too strong. You need to hear my story and allow my faith to stir yours. We need to be mutually encouraging each other.
             I believe the enemy wants us to keep quiet so he can keep people chained. He wants us to think that freedom is impossible, that failure is our destiny. He wants us to believe we are not warriors and that God doesn’t have time to help us. God wants us to open up and share so we can help each other. God wants us to be vulnerable because His power is made perfect through our weakness. God wants us to believe in ourselves, to encourage ourselves and others. We need to put on our armor and fight. I believe victory is ours because God is big and strong and wants us to overcome.
            I want to encourage you to look in the mirror and see yourself the way that God sees you. You are His sons and daughters. He wants to give you the power you need to become rulers and conquerors…to become overcomers. Nothing is too difficult for God. God is on your side and I promise you with His help you will defeat the enemy. So let your light shine to those around you living in darkness and share with them the hope that is inside you.

Contact Doug at doug@dougcreamer.com

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