It’s my pleasure to introduce you to Susan Chamberlain Shipe as she tells the story of God’s call to impart into the next generation through her devotional 52 Commands of Jesus for Children.
I always begin a project with great expectations and enthusiasm. In 2013 when I began writing 52 Commands of Jesus for Children, enthusiasm was at an all-time high. I was pumped and excited over the prospect of where this book could go and how it could impact the Kingdom.
I jumped in with great vigor.
52 Commands. One for each week of the year. I had my outline. I knew where I was going.
At the eighth command, I fell flat. I am not even sure what happened but I’m certain the enemy of my soul had a part to play in the falling. And, the file was laid to rest. All my enthusiasm, all my expectations, were silenced. I continued to write but not on this project.
It looked as though 52 Commands of Jesus for Children would never come to fruition. File closed.
Fast forward to Winter 2017. I was on a writer’s high! I had just finished a book I wanted to write for three years, The 40 Days of Lent. The book was selling well on Amazon and my husband and I left for our annual winter road trip to Florida. No thoughts of writing on my mind – the Lent book was exhaustive for me. There was a lot of research and a lot of soul-search! I thoroughly enjoyed being away from the screen and enjoying the Florida sunshine and family visits.
We came home with suntan on our cheeks and Bermuda shorts on our legs only to be thrown right back into the blasting cold of an Appalachian winter. UGHly! Husband went back to work and I came up to my office, turned the PC on and whispered this prayer, “Lord, what should I write next?”
I was not expecting the answer I received. This is what I thought I’d hear:
Susan, my beloved daughter, let’s write another 31-day book for the series. You know the titles you and I have jotted down in the journal. Let’s begin one of those.
This is what I heard:
You will not write another word until you finish 52 Commands.
And, HE DID speak to me in bold print! God was not messing around and I knew it. I humbly bowed my head and whispered, “Yes Lord.”
The rest, as they say, is history!
I got the file folder out. I found the Word document and I began. Commands and character qualities! Repent | Humility; Seek God’s Kingdom | Initiative; Go to Offenders | Justice; and so on until all 52 were completed. Somewhere between command number eight and command number twelve I had a light bulb moment and decided to add a coloring page for each character quality. I began searching for just the right image and using PicMonkey software I transformed each image into an ‘etch-a-sketch’ outline for coloring! I tested the coloring process and found if I used color pencils the results were like soft water colors. I was instantly motivated to finish!
The day came when I was ready to upload the manuscript. I self-publish in CreateSpace and I hit “SUBMIT!” I quickly designed a temporary cover and then, I ordered two proof copies. One for me and one for our pastor! The book is dedicated to our pastor of fifteen years because he was diligent to teach the 49 Commands of Christ to his flock for several years. The commands of Jesus Christ are crucial to spiritually growing up and Pastor Ron was driving it home!
I gave him a copy to proof and a green pen.
And, I waited.
With bated breath.The commands of Jesus Christ are crucial to spiritually growing up. @Hopeful50 Click To Tweet
After a week passed I sent an email with just this: “So, whatcha think?” Immediately, I received a reply asking for a few more minutes to compose a list of edits.
I began to get excited. I expected to get the book back filled with green edits but I was getting a list instead. The list was minor and I quickly made his edits and my own and began the cover process. I use a graphic designer at Fiverr for all my covers. We began with the photo selection and then we went back and forth, more than a few times, with font and color changes. Finally, my book baby had just the right cover to make its world debut!
I formed a small book launch team and 52 Commands of Jesus for Children with Coloring Pages was introduced to the masses. It has not received one negative review and at this moment in time is being considered for a full Spanish translation!
I like to say, “52 Commands is God-approved and Pastor-approved!” As the new school year begins, won’t you consider the book for family devotions? A family only needs one book and the coloring pages can be downloaded from my website www.hopehearthome.com.
52 Commands of Jesus for Children with Coloring Pages, shelved for four years and sprung to life by the mandate of God Himself, has the potential to impact our children with the Truth of the Gospel by teaching them the very words of Jesus Christ. I just don’t see how a parent could go wrong by teaching their children the words in red and the character qualities found in this 52-week family devotional.
I am an encourager with a heart for women. My devotion-journal, A Pruned Branch, was self-published in 2004 and is a compilation of 365 devotions for women in all walks of life. APB is full of practical principles for all, from the baby Christian to the mature believer.
The Lord delivered a message of Hope deep within my soul in 2002. Jesus, the Hope-giver met me in my hour of need and my heart overflowed with hope – the theme of my life since that time has been HOPE!
I am the mother of three adult children, grandmother (a/k/a Mimzy) to 20-year old Hannah and 14-year old Simon, and I am the wife of one man and together we share our love with one awesome dog, Sam! My husband, Lowell, and I attend Community Church in Mountain City, Tennessee. I enjoy writing, reading, organic gardening, traveling, and spending time with our family.
I love the Lord with every fiber of my being and my life’s purpose is: That I may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. Colossians 1:10 (NKJV) My life vision is: I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in Truth. 3 John 4
Susan is giving away one copy of 52 Commands of Jesus for Children for KRB readers! Enter to win, now through the end of Labor Day. Leave a comment giving the name of a special child in your life that could benefit from this one year devotional. Share the post to gain an extra entry. I’ll randomly pick one name and announce the winner on Tuesday, September 5. If you can’t wait, go ahead and grab your copy HERE.
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