A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem

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“A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon

 

’Twas the day before Christmas, and all through the land,

not a writer was stirring, none lifted a hand.

With paper and pencils put up with great care,

scribes opened their Bibles, to meet Jesus there.

 

Refreshing their spirits−they’d intended to do−

inhaling the Scriptures, believing they’re true.

With nary an argument, all snuggled in grace,

each writer excited to seek the Lord’s face.

 

A break from the hurry, they needed this season,

to affirm, with great hope, that Christ was their reason.

Yes, God−above all−gave them purpose to write.

The Lord−above all−was their Hope and their Light.

 

They prayed for their loved ones. They prayed for their readers.

They prayed for their projects, their friends, and their leaders.

Hearts fully surrendered, they asked God to be clear.

They asked Him for wisdom to last through next year.

 

Each writer confessed their worldly behavior.

They wanted so much to be changed by their Savior.

Transformed by God’s love and empowered by grace,

these writers prepared for the obstacles they’d face.

 

Discouragement. Doubt. Some would even fight fear.

But, the scribes would not quit. Not today. Not next year.

They had readers to serve, with each word and each story.

In the power of the Spirit, they’d write for God’s glory.

 

Be it novels or poems, their message the same.

Through devotions and articles, they’d spread the Lord’s name.

No frets over platform. With no worries, they’d edit.

With courage they’d write and give God all the credit.

 

Honing their craft, they’d trust the Lord’s choices.

They’d share the Good News, with their God-given voices.

In courage and faith, they’d gather for training.

No comparing, competing, criticizing, complaining.

 

They’d encourage each other, giving Jesus their best.

But the day before Christmas, in God’s presence they’d rest.

There’d be time to meet deadlines, to critique, to write brave.

And they’d make time to reflect on all that God gave.

 

’Twas the day before Christmas, and all through the land,

Christian writers were resting secure in God’s hand.

They’d surrendered their dreams to the Lord and obeyed.

In His unchanging character, their hope and faith stayed.

 

No matter what words the Lord gave them to write,

it was His words they’d ponder, each day and each night.

Equipped with His truth and empowered by grace,

these scribes would persist, content with God’s pace.

 

They’d honor their Savior and bask in His love.

They’d serve with great gladness, as He watched from above.

With total submission, on God they’d depend.

They’d trust in His plan and be willing to bend.

 

Though some days would be harder and tempt them to hide,

the Spirit of God would be with each brave scribe.

With challenges ahead and struggles so real,

they’d follow the High Priest, who knows how they feel.

 

Springing to action, with words at the ready,

God’s scribes, moving forward, persevering and steady.

Filled with deep joy, they’d shout into the night,

“On this Christmas we rest. For tomorrow, we write!”

 

 

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“A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem,” was written by Xochitl E. Dixon on December 23, 2016. “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon appeared first as a personal blog post on December 23, 2016 at http://www.xedixon.com/writer-to-writer/a-christian-writers-christmas-poem/ and may not be copied, printed, or dispersed in part or in its entirety, without expressed written consent from the author, Xochitl E. Dixon. “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon, may be shared on social media accounts, by using the share buttons on Xochitl E. Dixon’s personal website, or the share buttons under the December 24, 2016 posting of this poem on the Inspire Christian Writers website. “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon may be shared through the various options offered through social media, as long as the original author is credited. However, “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon may not be shared, in part or in its entirety, on a personal or community website without expressed written consent from Xochitl E. Dixon. Please submit your request to share on a personal or community website in the comment section below the original posting of the poem on Xochitl E. Dixon’s personal website or the Inspire Christian Writers website. When sharing this poem on social media accounts, please note the following: “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon. The original link for “A Christian Writer’s Christmas Poem” by Xochitl E. Dixon is: http://www.xedixon.com/writer-to-writer/a-christian-writers-christmas-poem/

Photo taken by and Meme created by X.E. Dixon.

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Giving the Gift of God’s Word to Students in Chile: You Can Help!

meme-cwm-bible-fundraiser-sept-2016

Have you been blessed by reading your Bible? Could you imagine not having access to a Bible?

As I celebrate my birthday in September, I’m thankful for the ways the Lord has changed my life through the power of His unchanging and infallible God-breathed words in Scripture.

I’m also thankful for the opportunities He’s giving me to share His truth and His love to the ends of the earth through the written word.

I’m especially excited about the privilege of serving as a contracted writer through the ministry of Our Daily Bread.

Wanting to thank God for His abundant blessings, I decided to give instead of receive gifts for my birthday this year.

So, how can one writer give in a way that impacts lives for years to come? By remembering God’s Word is the greatest gift we can give someone, and God’s children work best when they work together.

There are students in Chilé who need and want Bibles, but who cannot purchase them.

My writing and prayer partner Colleen Shine Phillips and her husband Steve have been serving as missionaries in Chilé for over 40 years through Christian World Mission.

They’ve helped establish Christian schools that the Lord is using to change the lives of students and their families.

This year, CWM would like help in distributing 100 Bibles each day for 100 days.

We need your help in praying for these students and in raising the funds to purchase Bibles that will be personally delivered to the students God has placed on the hearts of the CWM team.

Colleen will be sending me updates and photos of the kids as they receive our gifts. I’ll share them on my blog as we continue to pray for these students in South America.

A box of 28 Bibles costs $70.00, shipping and handling included.

CWM is praying they can distribute 360 boxes of Bibles to their students in Chilé.

That’s 10,080 Spanish New International Version Bibles placed into the hands of children, giving them the opportunity to seek to know God personally.

Hallelujah!

Would you consider praying with us and donating at least $2.50 to provide one Bible for a child?

Would you give $5.00 to bless two children, or $10.00 to place God’s Word in the hands of four children in Chilé?

There is no donation too small or too large.

Together, we can share the gift of God’s Holy Word with children in South America.

I will collect donations and mail them in one package to Colleen on September 15, 2016.

Please make checks or money orders payable to Christian World Mission, with “Bibles” noted in the memo section. You can send your donations with notes of encouragement and prayers to:

Xochitl E. Dixon

P.O. Box 1168

Suisun City, CA 94585

Include your name and address, so that you can receive a receipt for your tax deductible donation.

Thank you for your prayers and for blessing these students with Bibles they would not be able to afford without our help.

In His service,

Xochitl E. Dixon

Please take a moment to pray for Christian World Mission and visit their website to find out more about what God is doing in and through this ministry.

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Inspire Promise Book Launch – Saturday, December 13, 2014

When circumstances feel overwhelming, we can count on God to keep His promises.

I’m thankful for the privilege of having three of my stories published in Inspire Promise.

In “The Promise,” Logan struggles with the shame of his temptation and discovers he’s not the only one who needs to hope in God’s promises of forgiveness and redemption.

In “A Beautiful Mess,” Melissa agrees to a dreaded visit with the pastor and an unlikely ally helps her realize God’s promises of unconditional love and grace applies to her and her unborn child.

In “Emma’s Dancing Socks,” a mother is forced to admit that clinging to God’s promises requires her to trust Him, even when she’s not ready to let go of her greatest fear.

Inspire Promise Book Cover 2014Please join me and my fellow Inspire Christian Writers as we celebrate the release of our 2014 anthology.

The Inspire Promise book signing event will be held on Saturday, December 13, 2014 from 11am-1pm at Oasis Christian Mission Center, 10255 Old Placerville Road, Suite #1, Sacramento, CA 95827.

Inspire Promise will make a great Christmas gift to encourage anyone who is trusting God to keep His promises in and through their own circumstances.

 

 

To read my stories, along with the other great stories written by my fellow Inspire Writers, you can buy your copy of Inspire Promise online at Barnes and Nobel or Amazon.

You may also enjoy reading Inspire Victory, the 2013 anthology that celebrates victories in Christ and includes my short stories, “The Apology” and “Never Alone,” and my poem, “Amazing by Grace.”

Inspire Victory Book CoverInspire Victory will be sold at the book signing event on Saturday, December 13th, and is also available online at Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

Thanks for your continued support and encouragement as I share God’s truth through the writing and speaking ministry He’s placed on my heart.

Your prayers and fellowship as readers is priceless.

 

 

 

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Celebrating the Inspire Victory Book Launch

Inspire Victory Book CoverInspire Christian Writers is celebrating the launch of Inspire Victory during the month of May, 2014.

I’m praising God for the privilege of serving through this awesome ministry opportunity.

My short stories, Never Alone and The Apology, and one poem, Amazing By Grace, have been published in this year’s anthology.

Praise the Lord!

 

 

Inspire Victory - Book Launch - 2I pray God will use every writer in this anthology to inspire readers to rise up with victorious praise in all circumstances.

 

 

 

Please help us spread the word so we can continue spreading God’s Word through the art of storytelling and poetry.

 

Inspire Victory - Book Launch - 7You can order your copy at Barnes & Noble or Amazon today!

Thanks for your support.

 

 

 

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I’m Back, But the Journey Has Just Begun

20140326_122313“I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders. I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.” (Psalm 9:1-2, NIV)

 

 

 

It’s been twenty months since I started my healing journey, which has included multiple surgical procedures and injections to control daily high levels of pain.

I’m currently recovering from my second shoulder surgery and preparing to receive a nerve ablation in my upper thoracic back.

Though this season of physical affliction has been difficult, God has been using this learning opportunity to deepen my faith!

I look forward to returning to a more consistent blogging schedule and sharing what the Lord is teaching me as we continue to encourage one another and nurture our spiritual growth.

Thank you for subscribing to my blog. I pray for you and enjoy reading your comments.

In His service,

Xochi E. Dixon

 

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My Devotion has been Published in The Upper Room Magazine!

6_URE_JF14_C1.jpgOver two years after submitting my devotion to be considered for publication, “The Master Craftsman” is being read internationally in The Upper Room magazine and online on February 18, 2014.

 

 

 

To God be the glory for this humbling privilege, as I’m blessed with the opportunity to serve through the ministry of The Upper Room.

This devotion was inspired by my dad’s passion for carving beautiful artwork into his custom made quivers, as well as my desire to see others, and myself, as God’s amazing masterpieces.

Please pray the Lord will overwhelm readers with His love as they read this simple reminder of our incredible design, priceless value, and unique purpose as God’s awesome creations.

I have already been blessed by the comments from the community of Upper Room readers who encourage one another and are ministering to my heart through their amazing faith and love for God’s people.

To read and share “The Master Craftsman,” please visit The Upper Room blog, where you can also see photos of my dad creating his leather masterpieces.

I’m grateful for your continual support in reading and sharing my work.

But most importantly, I’m thankful for the opportunity to grow with you as we walk by faith, one Spirit-empowered step at a time.

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Writer’s Prayer: An Open Invitation

Feb to March 2013 267“Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.” Psalm 139:7-10, NIV

 

 

Thank You, Lord, for reminding us that You are Immanuel, God with us.

 

When we are facing uncertainty, You shine a light on our path.

 

When we are feeling isolated, lost, or alone, You hold us firmly in love everlasting.

 

You go before us and secure our flank.

 

Your presence overpowers the magnitude of our circumstances.

 

Your Word reminds us we can do nothing apart from You.

 

Even though we know You’re constantly present with us, we invite You into our day to day living, Lord.

 

We invite You into our writing process, too.

 

Please give us the story ideas that bring You glory.

 

Help us seek Your face before we sit down to write.

 

Help us bend to You as we craft each piece, allowing you to guide our word choices.

 

Help us praise You as we welcome You into the editing process.

 

Help us trust Your plan, even when it differs from our expectations.

 

May each piece we write be a reflection of our communion with You. We surrender our writing journey to You, Lord.

 

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

How do you invite God into your writing process?

 

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A portion of this prayer was previously published on the Inspire Christian Writers blog on May 6, 2012

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Built Up in Community: The Purpose of Critique Groups

Inspire - Mount Hermon 2012 - Group Photo“From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” (Ephesians 4:16, NIV)

 

 

 

Scripture affirms that Christians grow in community. As we work through conflicts and serve one another within healthy and holy relationships, God prunes His children so they bloom in Christ-like attitude and behavior.

 

This biblical perspective of growing in spiritual maturity applies to the writer’s journey, as well.

 

As Christians wanting to use our gifts for His glory, we need community in order to grow spiritually and hone our craft in excellence. When we remain humble and teachable, we honor God and can improve our writing skills in ways we could never manage in isolation.

 

“You will always lose objectivity about your own writing. You will always have something you can improve in your craft. And you will always need humility in this and every aspect of your life.” (Jeff Gerke, The Art & Craft of Writing Christian Fiction)

 

A good critique group and continual training, especially through writers conferences and workshops, help prepare writers to rise up out of the slush piles.

 

Since I’ve joined Inspire Christian Writers, my writing skills have been sharpened and my work has been published.

 

My critique group helps me catch mistakes that my eyes skim over after I’ve completed numerous self-edits.

 

They help me identify my pet words and phrases, challenge me to use active verbs and develop a deeper point of view for my characters.

 

They encourage me to strengthen my plot and keep my dialogue meaningful.

 

Feb to March 2013 125As a member of Inspire Christian Writers, I’ve been blessed with another perk. These writers pray for me!

The emotional support and thriving sense of community are priceless.

 

 

 

Their prayerful and professional feedback helps me take my writing to a higher level of quality.

 

They prove time and again that there is always something new to learn and that everyone has something of value to offer to my growing process.

 

In The Introduction to Christian Writing, Ethel Herr defines a critique group as a “small group of committed writers seriously interested in critical assistance for their never-ending flow of projects.” She notes that the “emphasis is on actual working to improve manuscripts and skill level of members.”

 

When we’re connected to a positive and diligent group of writers, we can build one another up in love, support and encourage one another as God grows us spiritually through our writing journey, and challenge each other to excel in the craft.

 

It’s also a whole lot more fun when we know we’re not alone on this crazy adventure of learning to use writing as a tool for ministry.

 

How has your experience in critique groups helped you improve as a writer?

If you’re not a writer, how has God used community to grow you spiritually?

We can all benefit by hearing your story. :)

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Photos taken of Inspire Christian Writers at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference and The Christian Writers Seminar

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A Series that Changed the Way I See: The Angel Eyes Trilogy by Shannon Dittemore

Shannon Dittemore Author Photo with Dark Halo August 2013Shannon Dittemore is the author of an amazing YA Fantasy saga. In the Angel Eyes Trilogy, Dittemore weaves supernatural truth into her vibrant storytelling. Her vivid imagery, intriguing character development, and powerful message of hope are only matched by her genuine voice and exhilarating plot twists.

 

 

 

Book Cover - Angel Eyes by Shannon DittemoreAngel Eyes, Dittemore’s debut novel, was published by Thomas Nelson in the summer of 2012. Brielle is given the gift of sight into the Celestial. Her dreamy boyfriend, Jake, reveals his secret power. And the couple fights for their lives as an evil human trafficking ring is uncovered.

 

 

Book Cover - Broken Wings by Shannon DittemoreI zipped through that book in a few days and waited anxiously for the February 2013 release of Broken Wings. In Broken Wings, Brielle and Jake question The Throne Room, their own motives, and the uncertainty of their relationship. Their adventure ends with a shocking twist that had me begging for a sneak peek at book three.

 

 

Book Cover - Dark Halo by Shannon DittemoreI was blessed to receive an early copy of Dark Halo, the brilliant conclusion of the Angel Eyes Trilogy. By the time I read the final page, I was inspired by Brielle’s courage to fight temptation and trust God’s timing, even though she would have to risk losing everything.

 

 

Dittemore will be celebrating the release of Dark Halo at Barnes & Noble in Citrus Heights, California, from 1-3pm (PDT) on Saturday, August 24, 2013.

 

I’ll be hosting a live interview with Shannon Dittemore on Twitter, Tuesday, August 27th from 6-7pm (PDT).

 

Shannon Dittemore - Kindle Fire Giveaway for Tweet Chat - Aug 2013During our live Tweet Chat, Shannon will be giving away copies of Dark Halo, gorgeous full-color posters and bookmarks, and a brand new Kindle Fire HD. To enter, all you have to do is chime in, during our interview, with relevant questions or comments addressed to Shannon, using the hash tag #DarkHalo

 

 

 

Please join us for an hour of with this intriguing author, with prizes announced every 15 minutes, and help us spread the word about this stunning saga!

 

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I hope to tweet with you soon at #DarkHalo

 

Follow Shannon Dittemore on Twitter at: @ShanDitty

 

Follow me on Twitter at: @Xochi_E_Dixon

 

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A Writer’s Prayer: For God Is Who He Is

Cancun Aug 2012 253“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9, NIV

 

 

 

Almighty God, Creator of the heavens and the earth, we worship You.

 

You determine the boundaries for the land and the sea. You control each rolling wave and paint the skies with vibrant reflections of Your complete love for us.

 

Your mercies radiate through every sunrise.

 

“In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” (Psalm 5:3, NIV)

 

Nothing is hidden from You.

Nothing is impossible with You.

Nothing surprises You.

 

Help us reflect on Who You are as You reveal Yourself through the treasure of Your Word.

 

Through Abraham, You showed Yourself faithful.

Through Moses, You showed Yourself mighty.

Through Joshua, You showed Yourself sovereign.

Through David, You showed Yourself merciful.

And through us, You show Yourself still constant, unchanging, loving and always in control.

 

Remind us that writing is an expression of worship, a tool for ministry, a gift to be used for Your glory. Purify our motives, ignite our creativity, and help us trust You in our waiting seasons.

 

“For a thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night.” (Psalm 90:4, NIV)

 

We acknowledge You, Lord. You are Who You are.

 

You will make our paths straight.

 

You are always right on time.

 

Hallelujah!

 

In Jesus’ name, Amen

 

In what aspect or season of your writing journey has it been difficult to trust God? How did the Lord help you through that tough time?

 

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Previously Published on the Inspire Christian Writers blog on April 22, 2012

 

For God Is Who He Is: A Prayer of Wholehearted Trust

By Xochi E. Dixon

Photo by X. E. Dixon

 

 

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