A Change in Plans

by Odell Sauls


“I will instruct you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.”

Psalm 32:8 – (NIV)

After I spent ten years laboring over an incomplete novel, I wrote a poem. And I smiled. I sat in my chair and compared my failed attempt at finishing my novel to the new words that flowed.


I then concluded God was leading me in an unexpected direction. During every lull in my day, my pen jotted rhymes. My inner satisfaction and fulfillment from the poems surprised me. I decided to bring them to my Word Weavers meeting to see if anyone else enjoyed them. And they did.


One member suggested I enter a particular poem in a writing contest. Still unsure of my skill, I asked if she thought my work would be taken seriously. Her resounding approval compelled me to follow through. With no experience, I needed help from those who knew how to complete the online process. I struggled with entering my submission and grew painfully aware of my poor computer skills. A wonderful lady on the receiving end guided me through the needed steps. Determined to master the process, I corrected my mistakes until I succeeded. I prayed and am sure she did too.

A few weeks later, I got a jubilant phone call from the same friend informing me I’d won first place in poetry. She texted a picture of the blue ribbon and certificate inscribed with my name. I laughed nervously, near to tears. I now recognized this as a gift from God, confirming his intent to lead me in a new direction.


I still pray to him about finishing my novel, but poetry lines fill my mind. As long as they do, I’ll write them.


We all have times in our writing lives where the Lord leads us away from one project to a different one. We may set aside an early, uncompleted work, to pursue a change in genre. Through this shift, the Lord may pull us in a fresh direction to find our fulfillment.


Lord, thank you for giving me perseverance and helping me with my writing. You know the desire of my heart and have so lovingly surprised me with fresh inspiration, encouraging me to keep going. I am grateful. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Odell is a Registered Nurse and still working at age 75 doing Home Health nursing. She is a
member of Tampa Word Weavers. Her recent poem on aging won her first place at the Annual
Tapestry Awards Contest. Odell loves studying the Bible with others and hopes to influence
some with her writing

7 thoughts on “A Change in Plans”

  1. Great article! I’m sure this will encourage others. Keep on writing and listening to your heart and to God’s voice for inspiration. RS

  2. This is a great article to remind us to always be open to God and his inspiration. Isn’t it amazing how we can be certain of our purpose and we are led in a different direction.

  3. It’s refreshing how honest you are about your novel, but obviously no defeat there. The delight you find in the discovery of your poetry is enlightening. God still surprises us, He is so good!

  4. Love the title- I can feel your heart’s desire to share your self and the love of God to others through your writings. I look forward to reading what the Lord inspires you to write.

  5. Although God gives us our free will, we will always end up on the path he chooses for us. He gives us every gift inside and he’s given you the gift of beautiful poetry. I look forward to reading more!

  6. Thank you Odell for your very thoughtful and inspirational article which was so humbly yet eloquently written and can speak to us all regarding writing and living every day!

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