But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. [Philippians: 3:13b-14]
Press On: The Copper Box
Philippians 3: 13b-14 is the focus verse I chose for my mystery novel, The Copper Box. In order to be free to find love and move forward into the future, Marty and Paul (the two main characters) must let go of ghosts that haunt them from the past. “Write what you know” is an important principle of writing. I know all about being haunted by the past, especially the what-if ghosts that spring from divorce. Maybe you do too.
The Apostle Paul’s Experience
When Paul wrote his letter to the church he had founded at Philippi, he faced teachers who insisted the new Gentile believers had to be good Jews before they could become Christians. Paul uses himself as an example to counter this false doctrine. He had certainly been a good Jew. He was born a member of the tribe of Benjamin and circumcised according to ritual. As an adult he was a Pharisee so zealous for the faith he persecuted the early church. Yet in the letter Paul insists he must leave every past accomplishment behind to run straight toward the goal the Lord Jesus has set for him.
I’ve heard multi-published authors say, “You think getting published is the goal, but publication brings challenges.” How right they were! Between the contract and publication I was busy with editing, cover design, writing acknowledgments, and all sorts of details of a book I’d never considered. From June 6 (publication day) until now I’ve been busy learning about promotion: a book signing, guest blogs, Facebook, Twitter, contests, building an email list, and writing about writing.
So what does all this have to do with Philippians 3: 13-14? Just this. To run this race, I must focus my writing. I must leave some of the accomplishments behind. A weekly blog is one. You may have wondered what happened to Bible Bytes. I’ve wondered myself. It stayed on my to-do list. It just never got written or even posted when a contributor sent a reflection.
What to do? Suzanne’s Scribbles is my solution. Several years ago I started a blog under this title. It appeared at irregular intervals and focused on whatever topic was at the forefront in my life at the time. The new version of Suzanne’s Scribbles will focus on topics related to my writing and will appear whenever I have something to say. Bible Bytes will return to the Twitter Bible format: a verse on Monday or Tuesday and a couple of questions later in the week. Who knows? Once in a while it might reappear as a reflection on a passage of scripture.
You can help me by sending me Bible verses that are important to you or questions you have about writing. Meanwhile, I really must get back to Guardians of the Canyon. Dan and Kate are in a helicopter over Las Vegas. It’s time to set down and get back into trouble.