In an unexpected twist of awesomeness, apparently I got published. Like in a book. By a publisher. I found out when a little lovely package containing this arrived on my doorstep Saturday morning.

20131217-103115.jpgHey cool.

So I wrote this essay over a year ago. It was about faith, and fear, and driving to church and feeling far from God and hoping in something more than what patchwork faith I could muster on my own. It was a hard piece to write, and though there are things I would probably say differently now, and places I wrote about that I am no longer experiencing, I’m glad I said it the best way I knew how then.

I submitted it to an anthology that I later thought had been ultimately shelved. I sat on it, figuring I’d go back and revise it someday and find a home for it.

Well um, too late n00b.

The story is called “Harbor Me,” and the book is Not Afraid from Civitas Press. You can buy it here if you feel so inclined. It’s on page 104. (Because clearly I haven’t flipped through it multiple times to go “wait, what I wrote this thing?” Clearly.)

And now, a little excerpt teaser thing:

Gold ribbons of sun filter through the trees on this drive down County Road 44. It’s a two-lane highway through not-quite-rural towns, lined with dense, forever green trees that wear misty cloaks in the morning light. Some Sundays, especially when the traffic is light and the air is cool, I believe I could drive this stretch a few times and call it an act of worship. Air whooshes through rolled-down windows, circling the inside of the car and rushing back out, disrupting my hair along the way. It doesn’t matter how messy my hair is for church. It only speaks to the mess I feel inside.

Could I make a confession? Few Sundays go by that I don’t consider turning around and going back. Almost thirty minutes in the car is long enough to let the voices of doubt, insecurity, and confusion fight for the upper hand. No matter what my outside routine shows, I can agree with them on one point. Yes, I am a misfit soul dressed in a patchwork faith. Yes, I love and am loved, but sometimes I am so afraid.