There once was a little girl who went shopping with her mother and saw a strand of costume jewelry pearls. Oh, how she wanted those pearls! But her mother wouldn’t provide the money to buy them, so she saved her allowance and birthday money until she had enough to purchase the necklace.
She wore the pearls all the time – even when she bathed and slept. Eventually, the necklace left a green stain on her skin, but she still wouldn’t take it off.
Then one night, her daddy came in to say goodnight. “Do you love me, honey?” he asked. “Yes, Daddy, you know I love you,” she answered, wrapping her arms around his neck. “Then will you give me your pearls?” he asked.
She slowly and sadly shook her head. “No, Daddy, please. Not my pearls.” Her father tucked her in, kissed her goodnight, and left the room. Each night for a week, they had the same conversation. Each night she grew sadder as she refused to give him her pearls.
Finally, one night, her father tucked her in and she knew what was coming. “Do you love me?” he asked. Her lip quivered as she answered, “Yes, Daddy, you know I love you.” “Then will you give me your pearls?” Her hands shook as she unclasped the necklace and handed the green-stained strand to her father.
He took the cheap, costume jewelry necklace and kissed her. Then he removed a small box from his pocket. “Thank you, honey,” he said. “And now I have something for you.” She opened the package to find a beautiful strand of cultured pearls, which her father helped her clasp around her neck.
I cried the first time I heard this story. I still sniffle every time I hear it, because I’m continually reminded of the things I hold on to, things the Lord wants me to release to Him because He has something so much better for me.
What publishing dream is the Lord calling you to release to Him? An agent relationship? A book contract? A platform with ten thousand Twitter followers? Five thousand blog subscribers?
I’m not saying we should sit back and give up our dreams. Use the gifts God has given you.
Use them to glorify Him.
Use them to bless His people.
Use them to extend His kingdom.
While you’re using your gifts, trust God for the results…and for His timing. He will always give you His best.