I will thank the Lord with all my heart as I meet with his godly people. How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in him should ponder them. Psalm 111:1-2 NLT

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thankful for Computers, Bibles and Ponderers

The October miraculous rescue of the Chilean miners inspired us all. Besides many miners kneeling and pointed heavenward as they exited the mines, all 33 emerged from the rescue capsule wearing shirts saying, "Thank you, Lord" on front, and "To Him be glory and honor" on the back, and "Jesus" written on one sleeve.

During their 69 days underground, these 33 individuals were forged into one strong band. A 19-year-old miner sent a letter to the surface saying, "There are actually 34 of us because God has never left of down here." Once the trapped men were known to be alive, their first request was for "Toothpaste and Bibles."

In October 2009, 14 writers met for the first time to attend Susan May Warren's first Storycrafters retreat. We shared a heart's cry for "Computers and Bibles." Who would know that those attendees would become precious friends as God forged us into "The Ponderers."

God has joined in friendship and writing encouragement through emails, phone calls, blog posts, brainstorming, critiques and continuous prayers. We cheer each others' progress and look for times to gather again, whether at the February Deep Thinkers retreat or the annual ACFW conference. At this year's MBT pizza party, Susie taught us "happy dancing." At the closing banquet, when she received her well-deserved 2010 Mentor of the Year Award, The Ponderers clapped, cheered and danced--inside and out.

Our close association strengthens us personally and professionally through open communication and loving supporting during deadlines, writing blocks, health or family crises and losses, jobs, a doctoral dissertation, travels, moves . . . God took 14 individuals and forged us into one strong, fun, connected group.

During the Chilean miner crisis, the Chilean president visibly inspired the world by supporting recovery operations and cheering the rescue of every man. That's a dim reflection of God faithfully directing our lives and answering our cries for computers and Bibles. When possible, our Mentor of the Year, Susie, is involved in with us on a daily basis--sometimes performing writing "rescue" missions.

The best part? The committed bonding of the Ponderers is now being replicated in other groups that God births through Susie's seminars. Check the My Book Therapy website and follow Word Warriors, Screaming Italics--and other future groups--who knows what their names will be?--as committed writers join hearts and skills to "write breathtaking stories to the glory of His name."

~Delores Topliff

The MBT Ponderers have put together a Thankful Basket. If you’d like to have a chance to win our basket of goodies, leave a comment during the month of November. Share a thought about a blog post or tell us what you’re thankful for!


  1. So thankful for the writing communities God has allowed me to be a part of! My first mentor was Kathy Tyers, with the Christian Writers Guild. And then I helped start a non-fiction critique group--back in the days when I said I'd never write fiction. Roxanne encouraged me as a fiction writer and introduced me to Susie and all things My Book Therapy, which is how I found the Ponderers. And I'm in a fiction critique group here in the Springs. All of these things--these people--have influenced me greatly as a writer!!

  2. Beautiful post, Dee. I, too, am thankful for the different writing communities God has blessed me with. I've made friendships I would've never made. And I've received help with my writing that has taken it beyond better!

  3. Oh Dee, what a beautiful post. Your caring and sharing heart blesses me at every turn.

    I got started with My Book Therapy because I saw the StoryCrafters 2009 ad. I was originally slated to go to another conference, but God moved upon my heart to go to StoryCrafters. I called my hubby told him I thought God was saying to forget the other conference and go to this one and the rest is history. I met the most amazing writers, critique partners, friends, pray warriors that I could ever hope to know, there. I am thankful everyday that God broke through and gave me the opportunity to go. All the Ponderers mean so much to me.

  4. What a wonderful post, Dee. Love how you weaved the Chilean miners story and our own Ponderers story together...both happy stories! I've thanked God so many times in the past year for leading me to Storycrafters and the Ponderers. And I'm thankful for the similar sprouting groups...yay!

  5. What a wonderful post, Delores! Though I'm not a Ponderer, I love hearing how you share about the victory and the desire to glorify God wherever you are (the Chilean miners in the mine; the Ponderers in their writing and encouragements). What an encouragement to hear how hearts have been knit together!

    As we wrap up November, I am thankful for the Lord's faithful provision for our needs, and our wants. I am also thankful that He takes the "hard" things of life from my shoulders and carries the burden for me!

  6. Dee,
    I think about God's timing of the first MBT Retreat right when I was seeking help in writing. God is so amazing!

    I am truly blessed to be involved with a group of ladies that care, that will move mountains in prayer for each other.

    Alena T.

  7. I posted on this blog post once, but now I see it didn't go through. Bummer.

    Dee, a day doesn't go by without thanking God for bringing all of us together. We are so blessed by each other on a daily basis!