I don’t know about you, but February tends to be when I start looking ahead to the spring and tapping my foot a little impatiently. This is despite the fact that I know there’s still quite a few weeks of winter before the season changes (regardless of what any groundhog has to say for themself).
I think, in some ways, it’s because February is a transition in the church calendar as well. We have the final weeks of Epiphany, Ash Wednesday, and then Lent, which carries us to Easter.
I don’t go to a liturgical church, but I still think the rhythms of the church calendar can be instructive in our spiritual lives. We end the year with Jesus’ birth. We start the new year celebrating the visit of the Wise Men, Jesus’ baptism, and His first miracle at Cana, kicking off His ministry. And then, we transition to Lent — a time of remembering all that Christ has done for us as we prepare to celebrate His death and resurrection.
Easter is such an important time in the life of a Christ-follower. It is the crux of our faith. Without Jesus’ death and resurrection, Christmas would be pointless.
Everything would be pointless.
Because we would be stuck. Dead in our sin with no hope.
But Christ did come. He did die. And He was raised.
And the redemption we’re offered through Christ is the heartbeat underlying every faith thread in every work of Christian fiction.
It’s also the big push behind the Easter in Gilead multi-author series that Valerie Comer, Heather Gray, Narelle Atkins, Deb Kastner and I have been working on for the last year or so. The project had its ups and downs. We had authors come and go. In some ways, at many times, the whole thing felt doomed. But at the end of the day, God worked it all out.
So far, I’ve had the chance to read Valerie’s book, Her Unlikely Hero and Heather’s, His Runaway Crush. Both books are stories that are full of Jesus taking the broken parts of life and making them into something beautiful.
And, of course, some swoony romance to round things out.
My book, Her Billionaire Benefactor, will be the second to release (on March 14). If you’ve been following along with my books, you’ll have been to Gilead, Kansas, before in The Billionaire’s Nanny. In fact, the heroine of Her Billionaire Benefactor, is Wendy Hall. (Wendy is the sister of Whitney, who found her happy ending in The Billionaire’s Nanny.)
Wendy has been through some tragedy in her life. A lot of it is grist for the small town gossip mill. But a lot has been something she fought to keep hidden, even from her family. She’s in desperate need of a new beginning and some new hope, and maybe that gentle reminder that we all crave when we’re walking through hard times–that Jesus is with us, even when we don’t feel like He is.
Preston is only in town to make his great-grandmother happy. He was hoping it would be a fast trip. Fly in, donate money to the college, fly home and go about his billionaire ways. But his GG had other ideas. So here he is, stuck in Kansas. Helping with an Easter production, of all things. And trying not to notice just how badly he wants to find ways to ease the pain he sees in Wendy’s eyes.
I hope you’ll join us in Gilead in the coming weeks.
I’d love to chat about how (if at all) the season changing helps you focus your heart as you prepare for Easter. And if that’s too much thinking for when you’re reading this post, tell me about your favorite Easter tradition or a book that you loved that was Easter-themed.
I’ll give one commenter an advanced e-book copy of Her Billionaire Benefactor. I’ll draw a name on Saturday, February 11.
p.s. I have a free book through February 10th! If you haven’t read So You Want a Second Chance, you can grab it free until then!