Is To Believe in You a finalist in the ACFW Carol Awards? I’m so anxious to know that I’m envious of the someone, somewhere who already does.
The top six scorers in each category are semifinalists and the top three of those—based on the same scores—will be the finalists. Those scores came in weeks ago, but only the contest organizers and judges know what those scores are. The finalists won’t be named publicly until tonight.
Since the winner will be announced Saturday, I’m sure they’ve already done the next round of judging too. It occurs to me as I write this, that the award probably already has someone’s name on it. There’s a thought.
I wish I could say the contest is the only wait-and-see unknown in my life right now. It’s not. You have some uncertainties in your life too.
Are you finding them as distracting as I am today?
I’m almost halfway through the draft of my next novel, the first full-length story in the Many Oaks Romances, and I’d like to move forward with it, but I’m tense and flighty. Since I can’t speed ahead to the answers—and that’d be a waste of a perfectly good afternoon, even if I could—what I need is to refocus on the things that are certain.
In Christ, I can be certain that whether or not my name is ever printed on an award, it is written in the Book of Life:
We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, sure and steadfast, which reaches inside behind the curtain, where Jesus our forerunner entered on our behalf, Hebrews 6:19-20a, NET2
The notes in my study Bible specify that the curtain is the veil that separated the inner place from more common areas of the temple. The idea is that, through Christ, we can commune directly with God.
I cannot overstate the privilege that is.
But the mention of a curtain in the context of this contest also reminds me of all the curtains they hang around the stage area at the conference where the Carol Award results are announced. It’s my understanding that the announcer reading the finalists’ and winners’ names is set up behind some of those curtains.
Jesus has gone as a forerunner on behalf of each contest entrant beyond that curtain as well. Whatever names are or are not read off tonight and Saturday night will not surprise Him. He’s on the other side of whatever figurative or literal curtains conceal the answers you’re waiting for.
You squeeze me in from behind and in front;
you place your hand on me.
Your eyes saw me when I was inside the womb.
All the days ordained for me
were recorded in your scroll
before one of them came into existence.
Psalm 139:5 and 16, NET2
He goes before us in the heavens, and hems us in on the earth. When the long-awaited answers are announced, not a single one of us must face elation or disappointment alone.
It is going to be okay, not because all the unknowns will work out in the way we hope they will, but because eternity is secure, and God is already with His children in the meantime.
I had this idea that I would also take some time to write in this post about how there’s so much good, even as we wait for answers. And there is. It seems the Lord has gifted me with a beautiful afternoon that I can spend any number of ways, one of the least attractive of which is wondering how that contest will shake out.
But it’s not gratitude for the present that has calmed me. It’s taking time to reflect on God with me, even if and no matter what.
In Him, we can have certainty in uncertain times.