It all began with a symphony of butterflies! Asked the inspiration for Cinnamah-Brosia’s inspirational collection, The Essence of Courage, prompts different aspects of the answer. When you read The Essence of Courage, you quickly learn (if you read the introductory material – strongly recommended) that my story with this book began over 12 years ago. It’ almost 13 now. Really it began before that. Allow me to share a glimpse of that early vision.
Five women with five very different agendas first met together 14 or 15 years ago now. Each with a different personal ministry, we joined our prayers and support to hold each other accountable and to seek God’s wisdom and direction. Little did we know that little group was the cocoon that would transform into a ministry outreach we called Butterfly Symphony. It’s life span was about as long as that of a butterfly, too. In case you are not aware, butterflies live about four weeks. Our group may have lasted for four months before many different life circumstances sent us flying apart.
The pastor of the church we attended at the time so believed in what we were doing, he suggested someone he believed would be a great partner to put wind beneath the wings again. Rather than a boost to the faltering vision, meeting with this person led me straight into the world of essential oils. Skeptically at first, but experiencing them first hand led me to a greater appreciation of their value. Studying the history and possible benefits opened up Scriptures in a way I never knew before. He unmistakably asked me to share what He showed me. First stop (and one I couldn’t leave): Solomon’s Locked Garden in Song of Solomon 4.
I researched extensivly, even spending time in a seminary library. How to put it all together and present it eluded me. That binder of notes and those that have been added since rested well-protected by my desk. When the light bulb moments came early last year that brought this to life, God had lined up everything perfectly for the forward momentum. Another verse from Solomon (Proverbs 4:23), and this is a paraphrase I love — “Cultivate your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life,” made me wonder exactly what was being cultivated in the secret garden. It must be more than fruits, spices, and essential oils. In a most unique fashion – one that only God could have revealed me – I knew then they represented the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5), and probably were recognizable to him as ideals Solomon’s mom had shared with him in her advice for choosing a Godly wife. Whew!!!!
As it came together into the recently published The Essence of Courage: Cultivating the Fruit of the Spirit in Solomon’s Locked Garden and in Your Heart, all the pieces finally slid into place. Early praise for The Essence of Courage describes it this way:
“. . . one of the most unique books I’ve had the privilege to read. It’s so fresh, interesting, captivating, and inspired. ” ~Jeanne Newberry
“Almost like a spa day. . .Her expertise and unique approach bring relaxation and renewal to the spirit and the body.” ~Johnnie Alexander
“How the author intertwines the “essence” of oils with the fruit of the Spirit, and connects Galatians 5 with Proverbs 31 is incredibly amazing.” ~Joyce Letcher
As I say it in the book’s acknowledgements, Thank you to Our Faithful God – He provides my essence of courage every single day. I’m so grateful for His encouraging empowerment to bring this book to you. May you be encouraged and find your own essence of courage to face life’s challenges each and every day.
Copyright 2017, Lynn U. Watson
Butterfly photo from Pixabay