Famous to God by Emily Owen


One of the joys in my life is my nieces and nephews. An added joy is their love of books. This year, for Christmas/Birthdays, they have, almost without fail, asked me for books (I say ’almost,’ because I won’t mention the ‘unicorn that walks’ request, which bucked the trend rather).

It’s my niece’s birthday this week, and she will be receiving a Pippi Longstocking set of books. I was very delighted when she requested books I loved as a child!

The children have enjoyed books all their lives but, as they grow older, they realise that their crazy aunty, who invents songs and stories just for them, and comes up with silly jokes to make them giggle, actually, um, writes books as well.

Recently, my mum overheard a conversation between Josiah (6) and Abbie (nearly 8, see above):
J: 'Maybe we'll be famous because Aunty Memem (me) writes books.'

A: 'Maybe we're already famous because she put our names in her last book.'

(The last refers to the dedication in God’s Calling Cards.)


I thought the conversation was hilarious, and I posted it on Facebook, along with;

Not sure how to break their lack-of-fame to them!

Because ‘I’m not famous’ was my first thought.  


When I stopped laughing, I pondered that conversation some more.

'Maybe we'll be famous because Aunty Memem writes books.'


Famous means well known.

Within a small sphere, perhaps I – and therefore J and A – am known. I have had, for example, the privilege of people I don’t know coming up and telling me they’ve read my book.

But well-known-famous?!

Alongside the size of ‘well known’ sphere of one of Josiah’s favourite children’s authors, who he recently met and probably sparked the ’fame’ conversation, I am not well known. I am unknown.


But, within that unknown, I am well known.

I venture to suggest that I am not the only person in the Association of Christian Writers who loves God.

Therefore, we are each known.
Known by God.

Well known.

Famous to God.


It can be easy to become discouraged in the writing life. We spend hours working on our current project, often literally unseen as we hide away with our computer, but sometimes feeling unseen, too. The words we produce are maybe not noticed, or perhaps they are noticed but rejected.


But they don’t go unnoticed by God.

Each one is seen and known.

Each word.

Each writer.

Famous to God.


The book I mention above, the one Abbie – poor child - thinks has made her famous, contains the following:


I am seen.

In the wilderness of life,

beside streams of provision

or far from them,

I am seen.

I forget that I’m seen.

By the stream,

when I have what I need

but things don’t feel so good

and I long to be noticed (really noticed – by someone –

anyone),

I forget that I’m seen.

Far from the stream,

I don’t have what I need.

Trouble looms.

I’m all alone.

I want it to end.

I forget that I’m seen.

Seen by the One who sees everything.

The One who sees through.

Sees through the smile to my despair.

Sees through to the silent screams behind my coping.

Who knows me inside out,

yet never looks away.

I am seen.

Being seen, I dare return his gaze.

And I live in his seeing.

By the stream.

In the wilderness.

I live seen.

(© God’s Calling Cards, Authentic Media 2019)



'Maybe we'll be famous…’

Or maybe we already are.

Famous to God.





Comments

  1. I love this, Emily. What a beautiful, encouraging and touching reflection. It's so easy to compare ourselves to those "famous" authors, but you're quite right. We are seen and loved by God. Thank you. I think you're famous, by the way! Your book is on my bookshelf, with your name on it and I will never forget the Peppa Pig workshop. Move over David Walliams, there's a new kid in town!

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  2. Thank you, Ruth, you've encouraged me back, and I laughed at the David Williams comment!
    You were great in the Peppa Pig workshop (as were the others), and it was such fun. Brilliant pieces of writing.
    My book is on your shelf? Now, there's a claim to fame if ever there was one. Seriously. Thank you.

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  3. Beautiful, Emily, thank you.
    All those famous authors - not really 'well known' at all, just recognisable perhaps? Whereas to be well known to God, what a difference.
    You reminded me of a song I love too: Known by Tauren Wells https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xckDgX8xNfg

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  4. Thank you, Liz. I hadn't come across that song before, but I've just clicked the link you shared: yes, the lyrics fit so well.
    I like your point about the crucial difference between 'well known' and 'recognisable'.

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