Monday, November 19, 2012

WILLIAM PAUL YOUNG AND AN UNFORGETTABLE STORY


Hi all, welcome to Monday. If you’re reading this post in the morning, I salute you. A great way to start your day! LOL. Just kidding. Reading at night would be a good end to the day, too. So anyway, I have been knee deep in ACFW’s First Impressions contest. I’m the coordinator for the Contemporary category and may I just say, I’m stunned at the number of entries. OH MY GOODNESS. So, I haven’t been coming up for air very often.

However, Saturday night I took some time off and went to a booksigning. William Paul Young, author of The Shack, was at my local Christian Bookstore. I went, so very glad to be away from my computer!

Paul signed books for about 30 minutes, then spoke to the crowd gathered there. He told the story behind the story.And what an amazing story it was. I’d never heard how The Shack came into being. I mean, I read it a few years ago when it was all the rage, but then moved on to the next book.



 
 
But last night Paul said something that intrigued me enough to make me change my entire post for today. I’m going to give you the condensed version. He said back in 2004, he and his wife lost everything, their house, their cars, everything. Fortunately, their kids were in college on scholarships so they didn’t need a whole lot of space. They moved into a small house near the train station so that Paul would have transportation to work. He was working three jobs at the time. They were so poor that they had nothing to give their kids for Christmas. So Paul decided to write a story for them. He wrote The Shack. The only problem was he had no way to print it, etc. Then one night before Christmas, someone slipped an envelope under their front door. In it was 5 $20 bills. Just enough to print up copies of the book. Paul did. He now had his Christmas presents for his family and friends. Fifteen copies of The Shack. He passed them out on Christmas, so glad he was able to give his gifts. Later, through the course of word of mouth, The Shack sold over 18,000,000 copies in 41 different languages.
 
A German company contacted Paul and wanted to do a documentary on him. He said sure. He recommended a camera guy, but that guy couldn’t do it. However, he recommended another guy. Who also couldn’t do it, but said he would contract out to another guy. Finally, they settled on a date and time. Paul met with this man and he said he wanted to film the small house by the train station where Paul had finished writing The Shack. They went there and the man stopped, stared and shook his head. Paul asked him what was going on? The man told him a story. He told him about how one Christmas he had a little extra money and wanted to give it to someone who had nothing for Christmas. A man he worked with told him about Paul. So one night, he slipped up to Paul’s front door, the front door he was now staring at, and slipped an envelope under it.

There were more incredible details that I didn’t include for the sake of the length of this post, but isn’t it amazing how God places people in our lives right where we need them, when we need them? And the funny thing was, Paul sent that manuscript out to 30 something publishing houses and ALL of them rejected the story. And he said he didn’t care. That wasn’t his identity. His identity was in Christ and the first fifteen copies of The Shack had done everything he had intended it to do. Anything extra was gravy. Because Paul had come to be at a very comfortable place.
 
He was content.

He asked the audience, “What’s the opposite of More?”

Of course people said, “Less.”

But Paul said, “Nope. The opposite of More is Enough.” Think about that.

I just loved that. I love how God meets us where we are, exactly when we need Him to.

Thanks for letting me share a little bit about William Paul Young and The Shack. He’s a super nice guy and has a new book for sale. It’s called, Cross Roads. He said his wife liked it better than The Shack. I’m looking forward to reading it.


 
 
 

7 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing that beautiful story, Lynette. Amazing what God can do.

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  2. I loved hearing 'the story behind the story'. I loved the book The Shack and have read it several times. It's highlighted and underlined throughout. Judy jcnc333@yahoo.com

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  3. I loved "The Shack". I can't wait to read Crossroads. I am so glad I read this post because when we start to give up, God puts something in our way to make us change directions. Thank you so much. I really needed to read this right now at this moment. deb37beny@comcast.net

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  4. Wow, that's truly amazing. I thought The Shack was a very good book, but now that I know more about the man behind the story, it makes it more intriguing. Thanks for sharing this. I am sure his new book will be just as good, or perhaps better, like his wife said. debsbunch5[at]jesusanswers[dot]com

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  5. What a great post, Lynette. It ministered to me more than I can say. Blessings to you - and to Paul. (S)

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  6. Wow! What a wonderful story behind the story. Thanks for sharing this, Lynette. I'm glad you had the opportunity to meet Paul and that he has a new book coming out.

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  7. This blog post just blew me away. What an amazing story!

    I didn't realize that he'd written another book, and will definitely look for it.

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