21 April 2013

Interview with Writer Gwendolyn Gage

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Gwendolyn Gage

Gwendolyn Gage is an aspiring author anxious to take the truths God has taught her to the world through the package of an entertaining novel. She’s been writing stories since 2008, and now has three completed manuscripts. For the Sake of One Lost is a Speculative novel about time travel to Roman Ægyptus. The Way of Impressions and Healing Rift fall under Historical Romantic Suspense, and are set in the 18th century.

Gwendolyn, welcome to Overcoming With God.  We appreciate your willingness to share your testimony of overcoming with our readers. 

Would you tell us about the most difficult thing in your life you have had to overcome, with God’s help?
Thanks, Carrie, I’m excited to be your guest today! I was well on my way to realizing my American dream by 2006. A homeowner and a newlywed, I had a cool job at Lockheed Martin, one of the most coveted places to work in Dallas. But in 2007, when my grandpa’s health began to fail, God asked me to quit my job and move to Kentucky for a season.

For a long time, I struggled with the question “Is this really God’s will?” Especially after I gave up my job and made the move, only to be rewarded with a hard financial struggle that sent us right back to Texas in order to save our house from foreclosure. We moved in with my mother-in-law who’d been house-sitting for us, and then the unthinkable happened. She didn’t move out. And the comfortable relationship I thought I had with her, evaporated.

Suddenly, the spiritual warzone I endured at work followed me home, and sleep was my only rest. Suddenly, my marriage was under attack, and I was losing control of even what we had for supper at night. I wallowed in self-pity, sure that quitting my job at Lockheed Martin and going to Kentucky had been a huge and terrible mistake. I wrote my first draft of For the Sake of One Lost that year, using it as a way to vent my frustrations, express my longing for a normal life, and make sense of the lessons God was teaching me.

That pivotal year of 2008, God taught me the meaning of “for better or for worse”. Sitting on my front porch one breezy, spring night, I imagined my life without my best friend, and considered a road I knew was not God’s best. By God’s grace, I decided to stay with my husband, even if it meant living with his mother for the rest of our lives and accepting second place. God also taught me how to love my enemy—how to repay cigarette smoke in my house with a salad from Olive Garden, her favorite. How to pray for her every morning on my drive to work. When we lost our house the next year, hubby and I moved in with friends across town and my mother-in-law moved into a rental home. Sadly, she never contacted my husband again. I still pray for her.

Today, the blessings of that lesson in tough love are reaching so much farther than my husband and his mother. If I hadn’t gone through the trials of dark 2008, I wouldn’t have the patience or strength to endure the servant-like ministry He’s called me to today. I’m back in Kentucky, serving my grandparents and other family members who live with them. It’s hard. I didn’t want this. I wanted to cook and clean and care for a family of three in my own home, not a multi-generational household of ten people in someone else’s. But I know that God has put me in this situation to minister Christ’s love in a particular way. It may be that my example will get a family member’s attention when nothing else will. I keep that in mind when my selfishness and pride try to tell me I deserve better. I already have better—waiting for me in God’s city, the New Jerusalem. My version of the American Dream is nothing compared to what God has in store when I’m with Him for all eternity. I can’t wait! Can you?

Gwendolyn Gage blogs at “Serving Through Words”, and you can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. 
 
 
 

Thank you Gwendolyn for agreeing to answer these questions.  Have a blessed day and keep on writing!!

26 comments:

  1. Carrie, I'm excited to be your guest today! Thanks again for inviting me. I'm praying that my story ministers to someone else who may be struggling with the road God has asked them to travel. My situation is still not fun, but God has changed my heart for the better, and I'm giving Him all the glory.

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    1. Thanks for visiting with us here on OWG, Gwen! I pray in agreement with you!

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  2. GWENDOLYN welcome to Overcoming With God, it is so wonderful to have you with us. Thank you for sharing your story of overcoming. I rejoice when I see a young person that has learned at an early age to know the voice of GOD and has learned to trust Him. I was raised in a Christian home and I received Christ in my life at five years old and I still have problems obeying God's voice. It's so much easier to live by what we can see than what we cannot, but to have a victorious life we must live by faith! Your testimony has tremendously blessed me! I can't wait to read your books! GOD BLESS YOU!!

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    1. Thanks Teresa! I was raised in a Christian home too, and went to college at a Bible school--"Christ For the Nations" in Dallas, TX. I really did live in a church "bubble" for a long time, and the harsh world caught up with me fast after I graduated and got married. A few times I thought I'd sink rather than swim, but God has kept his hand on my life, and I'm excited about all the good He's going to bring out of this mission He's called me to. Change is on the horizon, I can feel it. ;-)

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  3. Gwendolyn, thank you for being with us this week and for sharing your testimony. It simply amazes me that a young woman of your age has learned to say "yes" to God's leading, distasteful though it may be to the flesh. I don't know many people who would do what you are doing. I felt also when I was reading your testimony (before I read your comment above), that a change is on the horizon for you and many, many blessings ahead. Get ready!

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    1. Hi Diana! Thank you so much for your encouragement. This has been a hard road for me, but I thank God for every day of it, because He is using me to touch lives. When I was comfortable in life, I confess I really didn't know how to love people or put God before myself--I still struggle with putting God and others before myself! But since God up-ended my world, He's slowly taught me how to love, and how to take up my cross and follow Him. Knowing that I'm serving and pleasing Him is so much better than a comfortable life. :-) Bless you!

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  4. Gwendolyn, this story just touches me so much. What a testimony, and I'm sure it's one you never thought you'd have to live! You are a blessing to me, and I know that your MIL will one day realize the sacrifices you made for her. Love to you and thanks for having Gwen today, Carrie!

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    1. Oh, Heather, you are a blessing to me too! Thanks for stopping by. Yeah, the events of the last five years wasn't a part of my plans, LOL, but I trust God that it will all be worth it, and that people I love will be saved, including my in-laws. That would make it all worth it, to see them again in heaven someday, if not again in this life. :-)

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  5. Gwendolyn, may God bless your for your faithfulness to Him and also your faithfulness to your love for your husband. I know he will bless all your work, and make it a blessing to others. I can't wait to see what all enfolds for you in your future.

    A time-travel story that is Christian? What an interesting concept! Sounds like a fun ad interesting book.
    Vicki OWG

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    1. Bless you, Vicki, thanks so much! Yes, I happen to love time travel *guilty grin* and that first manuscript is very dear to my heart as so much of myself was poured into it. I don't know if you've heard of Christian Author Michelle Griep, but she writes Christian time travel, and both her books are excellent. I highly recommend them. Here's the link to my favorite of hers. :-) http://www.amazon.com/Undercurrent-Michelle-Griep/dp/1936835029/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1366579716&sr=8-1&keywords=undercurrent

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  6. This is a sad story. Did she ever find out if her husband asked his mother to live there permanently ? This would be very hard to live with. And, she isn't like me. I don't want to have to live with my children until it is absolutely have to. When you move in you lose your independence I know it bothered my mom tho she loved all of her kids. But, she never interfered, She had run her own household since she was 15. You shouldn't try to be boss if it isn't truly your place . And, it would also be hard to live with so many. I would them all in the same community(I think), but not in one house. She seems to handled it well. But God says for a husband to leave his parents and cleave to his wife. So, i think he should nicely told his mother that his wife was at the top of the list when it came to her household. I have heard of this before tho. This didn't say what book or was it not a give-away this time. Maxie

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Maxie. :-) Living with my MIL was hard, and foreclosure just added to everything else. My MIL cut off contact with my hubby because he told her that I came first, and I hate that it ended the way it did. I am amazed at God's plan--He was training me as I chose to responde in love, for I would not have had the strength to take on my current situation, without having first learned how to swallow my pride then. Bless you!

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    2. Hi, MAXIE, and bless you for stopping by to comment! We have some reviews about two very exciting books coming up this week...so stay tuned!

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  7. Gwendolyn, I'd like to extend the welcome to OWG from myself as well and want to thank you for sharing your incredible testimony with us all. I have to to say, I really am in AWE of you and the grace and servant-hood you've displayed in your life. I don't know that I would have been so gracious for so long, I really do admire that. I know our loving heavenly Father however would be pleased and I also know your blessings will come!!
    I'm looking forward to reading your books Gwen... particularly the Historical Romantic Suspense! :) God bless you!

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    1. Noela, thank you so much! God's grace has carried me a long way, and sometimes I just have to sit back and be in awe of why He would choose me for a special mission that requires a lot of patience, self-denial, and prayer. Because believe it or not, I am not known to be a patient person, lol. In fact, impatience has characterized my life in the past, and its God's grace that is changing that. All glory to Him! Thanks for your interest in my books! I have a soft spot for the 18th century. My latest MS, "Healing Rift" came from a real problem I researched--when spouses went missing, they were presumed dead after a certain amount of time, and the surviving spouse was permitted to re-marry. But if that missing person turned up alive, the second marriage was annulled immediately, and the first marriage reinstated. As far as I can tell, there were no exceptions.

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    2. I am always so grateful to God for His grace and love also!! And I do believe He must have some very special plans for you Gwen. One thing I've learnt over time is never, ever to limit God as to what He can do in our lives... as long as we are willing to serve Him, He will open the doors at the right time!!
      Gwen I didn't know this about the missing spouse problem but WOW, what an interesting premise for a novel. Sounds very intriguing! :)

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    3. You're such an encouragment, Noela! Yes, I believe that God will open doors at the right time. I'm standing on that. And I'm all smiles to hear you're interested in my story! Lord willing, maybe someday soon I can announce a contract and release date. :-)

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  8. I appreciate what you shared with us today, Gwendolyn. We had my MIL living with us for about 6 months. Fortunately, she moved away as a result of circumstances beyond the control of any of us. She was not very healthy, and thus tended not to interfere too much in our daily life, as I was also her caregiver. The relationship did not end when she left, and she did eventually accept Christ as her Savior before she passed away!
    While it was hard at times, in hindsight, I am grateful for the opportunity we had to show her what a Christian is.

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    1. Betz, I am rejoicing with you that your MIL gave her life to Christ! It's such a blessing that you were able to be a part of that. I'm also thankful for the opportunities I had to be a witness to my MIL, and I hope that my efforts to show her God's love in my words and deeds left an impression. Bless you for being here.

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    2. PTL Betti! That is wonderful. I have to believe Gwen is a great encouragement and example of Christian love.

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  9. What a joy it is to see you here, GWEN!! Thank you SOOOO much for sharing your testimony and struggle, you have been in my prayers for a while now and I will continue to pray as you walk this journey :) You are SUCH a treasure and a blessing to God, your family, and to blogging friends all over this internet. I am so utterly proud of you, Gwen, knowing that NONE of this has been easy for you but that you have been obedient to God no matter what the results were. I can promise you that He is honoring every tear, every effort, every moment of discomfort you have endured for HIS glory long before you get to heaven my friend.

    I praise God you have stayed with your hubby because you have honored God in doing so and that obedience brings breakthroughs beyond your imagination!! I will continue praying the blood of Jesus over your marriage and home as you get more revelation, blessings, and favor. May the joy, freedom, and countenance of God Almighty surround you and shine through you like never before Gwen. Sending you BIG time hugs and smiles :)

    *waving to Carrie and OWG sisters, LOVE the new background here*

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    1. Oh Kara, I just love you! You are such a wonderful encourager, and your words brought tears to my eyes. This was a very hard testimony to share, but I praise God for His wise plan. He has a reason for it all, I know, but sometimes I raise my eyebrows at Him and have to say, "Really? You really think I can handle this?" LOL! The Scripture says that joy comes in the morning, and I feel the sun rising on my life and on my family...I don't see the evidence yet, but I KNOW, the night's almost over. Thank you SO MUCH for your prayers, Kara! They mean so much to me. Bless you, my friend!

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  10. What a great testimony! Inspiring stuff Gwen! keep keeping on, God knows your heart and his rewards will be great and who knows (as you said) whose heart you will touch by hearing and doing God's heart!

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    1. Thank you, Jess! When I'm tempted to throw in the towel, I remind myself that people I love would suffer, and I think of all those God has brought me in contact with since I quit my job that day in '07. A normal, comfortable life might sound good sometimes, but pleasing God and touching lives for His sake is so much better! Bless you!

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  11. It is in the hard and difficult times that God shows His strength through our weakness. He keeps you strong and steady on His course and there are blessings along the way of difficulty for people who look around at all the facets with the right attitude. So glad I found this spot of encouragement to begin my day. The Lord has trusted you with this assignment of His. He is growing you to show others the way through the here and now and The Way for all eternity.

    Blessings, Janice jsmithg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. Bless you, Janice! I do think of it that way--that God has entrusted me with a special assignment. And I cling to 2 Corinthians 12:9, for I have a lot of weaknesses, and plenty of need for His strength, lol! I'm so glad I was able to encourage you, today!

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