Today author Rachel Held Evans releases her second book, A Year of Biblical Womanhood, and in honor of her and this momentous occasion, a group of friends and admirers have gathered here with their personal letters. Here's mine:
I still remember the day you left a comment on my blog. I don't recall exactly what you said, except that it made me feel happy -- validated and, well, smart. I remember how excited I was - Rachel Held Evans, published author of Evolving in Monkeytown (a book I'd read and loved) had stopped by and talked to me -- me, the wee blogger with 14 followers.
Your comment gave me the confidence to email you. I peppered you with a bunch of green questions, silly questions like how many times a day I should tweet and how many readers I needed to "get published." And you graciously replied, patiently answering all my inane questions, encouraging me, holding my hand across cyberspace. A few months later you agreed to look at my book proposal and manuscript, and then you offered to refer me to your agent. Because of your generosity, because of your willingness to take a chance on a scared writer with a big dream and no clue how to make it happen, I was able to make a big leap in this journey toward publishing. I'm certain it would not have happened without you.
I haven't forgotten that generosity, Rachel. I haven't forgotten how essential it was for me to feel like someone was invested in me as a writer. I haven't forgotten how your confidence in me made all the difference. I remember it every time I get an email from a new writer, someone with a question, someone who needs a little reassurance and guidance, someone who needs a hand.
Thank you for demonstrating that generosity and kindness do indeed exist in what sometimes feels like the dog-eat-dog world of publishing. Thank you for living out Paul's words: You love others and delight in honoring them. You offer help to God's people in need. Your gift (one of many!) is to encourage. (Romans 12:8-10).
Rachel, may God bless you and keep you. May he make his face shine down on you and be gracious to you. May God turn his face toward you and give you peace. Amen.
And thank you.
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