Last month Filipe and I traveled to Dallas, TX.  Every fall and spring (since kids came on the scene) we take a trip away together- just the two of us, no kids.  The trip is marriage-focused, but this time we combined a little work in too.  And I didn’t mind.  I happen to really like ministry, and because of our current season, I often have to watch from the sidelines.  I enjoyed getting involved for a couple days without having to chase after three kids.

This trip also gave me a few days to focus on writing.  While Filipe met with pastors, I sat in Starbucks typing away on my computer.  It was heaven for me.

Through a series of random events (or what felt random at the time), I was scheduled to have lunch with Mary DeMuth (author of The Muir House which I reviewed earlier this week) and two other friends and pastor’s wives (one of whom happens to be a writer too!).

Mary just so happens to understand a little about church planting since her family helped plant a church in France (yes, the country).  She’s authored about a dozen books all while being a stay-at-home mom of three, and currently attends the church that is South Bay’s primary sponsoring church.  I would say we have just a little in common, but I’ll let you decide for yourself.

The afternoon of our lunch, I arrived full of questions, and an expectant heart, all while trying to hide the nerves (though I probably didn’t succeed at that very well).  Mary arrived with gifts in hand and instantly put us at ease.  We ate lunch in a quaint little restaurant in Rockwall, TX discussing the worlds ministry and writing and how to navigate through them.

I felt so blessed in that moment.
I felt like God was smiling down on us as we sat together.
His daughters helping one another grow in the gifts He’s given them.

It felt like the opportunity of a lifetime, and while I shy away from ever putting someone up on a pedestal, it was.  Mary was incredibly kind and gracious.  She answered my questions without making me feel like the amateur I am, and gave great advice and insight into being a writer.  I walked away with more respect for her as a mother and a writer, and more driven to pursue what is in my heart.

I had already agreed to review Mary’s book, The Muir House, prior to our meeting, but didn’t read it until the week after.  Most of the book is set in the city of Rockwall, so reading it after our visit felt surreal and made the story come alive even more.

I want to remember moments like these.  Meeting Mary was an honor, and while I feel a little embarrassed by the giddiness of this post, I hope I never get too comfortable meeting people like her.  She has put years into learning the craft of writing and developing as a writer, and has much to show for it.  I am challenged and inspired by her and don’t take the time she gave us for granted.

Thank you Mary for sharing your gift of writing with us, and for teaching us what you’ve learned along the way.