It's another Fab Friday and today's featured author is Danyelle Scroggins. She's here to share her novel, Enduring Love. The plans of our lives don't always align with the plans of God. When we become lost in our thoughts and plans, the Lord has a way of bringing things back to reality. Read on...
No one ever truly realizes the power of their love, until love is tested and they have to endure things unimaginable and sometimes hurtful. And if the truth is declared, no one wants to but…
Sometimes we find ourselves standing in the test of love, and this is exactly where Priscilla Marshall finds herself. Married to Steven since she graduated college, together they were the perfect couple. Both making successful business moves, both loved their choices, but one had a secret that could change their lives.
Priscilla, now forced to make a plan to secure her future, finds out that a plan without God involved is not a plan at all because “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails” (Proverbs 19:21).
What will God use to make this woman’s plan come full circle with His own, and after the test, will they find that they truly do have an Enduring Love?
Enduring Love Blurb...
Priscilla is the wife of Steven Marshall and the owner of Marshall’s Mortgage. She’s too wise for her own good and has decided that instead of exposing her husband, she would rather clean him dry and leave the marriage. Her plan seems to be going just fine until Priscilla gets the shock of her life.
Now confused, she attends the Love Never Fails retreat in Loving, Texas hosted by her college friend and roommate, Serafine. Priscilla finds out that no plan will ever work outside of God’s plan which will always prevail. And this causes her to determine if she and Steven truly have an Enduring Love.
“Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil.”
1 Corinthians 13:4-5
Priscilla reasoned why God would choose her to be the carrier of life. Married for almost fifteen years, sexual pleasures only happened on special occasions. Often without romance, and starting with a touch here, feel there, and a real quick release on his part. The thought of making a baby vanished long ago.
In reality, indecisiveness plagued her like a severe toothache regarding being a wife or instead, being his wife. Her mind and ambitions settled on being the audacious executive she fancied herself. Relinquishing all thoughts of motherhood, that were now nowhere in the plan.
Many are the plans of man…but it is the Lord’s plans that prevail.
Dr. Thorpe’s private practice became her haven, the place where swift answers and solutions to her most pressing issues materialized. Today, he acted as the grim reaper delivering death-blows instead of solutions. Death to her plans, dreams, and her one hundred and thirty-five-pound figure. She worked hard for her body, and to destroy it for a child neither of them wanted put her in a complete stupor.
As she sat in a makeshift gown barely covering her breasts, Priscilla sighed. Moving to get more comfortable on the green leather table-bed covered with a sheet of wrinkled white paper, she felt hopeless. Priscilla swung her legs as though they could propel her into another space in time. She took a deep breath. Lumps in her throat seemed to suffocate her and caused her to give in to the explosive stream of tears cascading down her face.
How am I going to care for a child in the midst of running a company? Marshall’s Mortgage a premier mortgage company and her baby, her purpose that bequeathed her employees who became family. A creative concept and idea birthed right after leaving college with a degree in accounting and nourished with intensity and integrity. The thought of leaving it with anyone for more than a day or two frightened her. Because of this baby, she would have no choice.
“Priscilla? Are you alright?” Dr. Thorpe inquired.
Startled by his voice and still confused, she hadn’t noticed his return. “Dr. Thorpe, I’m not alright. This pregnancy is so unexpected. I thought maybe the flu or a virus. But this? I took a darn pill every day since Steven and I married. They’re supposed to prevent this. I don’t understand how it could happen,” she responded with a pant and sniffle between words.
“I’ve been an OB doctor for well over twenty years, and I promise I see women who swear they took their birth-control pill on time and still got pregnant. I know you are quite familiar with God and His work. And, I consider us close friends so I can say this.”
“No matter what and how we try, we can never abort the plans of God. He knows this child is going to gain a complete knowledge of Him. The Father chose you and Steven to protect, nurture, and train him or her in the way they should go. Priscilla instead of the questions why and how be excited, and grateful God chose you.”
“I don’t feel like this is something I want to do. I don’t even know if I can do it.”
“Talk to Steven about this before you make any rash decisions. If you want my opinion, I believe you can do all things through Christ. Priscilla, He will strengthen you. Could this baby be the next president or a future author? Who knows? But one thing is for sure, you will never know if you don’t allow this child the opportunity to be presented to the world.” As Dr. Thorpe patted Priscilla on the shoulder he continued, “Now, you can get dressed. Here’s a little baggy with goodies in it like prenatal vitamins, iron pills, and a couple of packages of ointment for your skin to prevent stretch marks.”
“I guess. I sure would prefer some more birth control and condoms, but since it is what it is, my choice doesn’t matter. Gotta find a way to accept what God allowed. Thank you for my goodies.” She smirked, acknowledging the brown paper bag in her hand.
"Exactly. Now get dressed. I’ll be back in a moment.”
Priscilla slid off the table, pulled the paper gown off, and glanced at herself in the mirror over the sink. She retrieved her panties, skirt, shirt, scarf, and blazer from behind the dressing area and in slow motion began to dress. Fully clothed, she threw the paper gown in the trash and peered at herself once again.
Noticing the trail of tear stains on her cheeks, she snatched a couple of the brown napkins from the dispenser. Priscilla turned on the faucet, wet the napkins, and wrung out the excess water before washing her face. She reapplied her makeup to restore the picture of perfection before she’d received the shock of her life. Priscilla’s mind drifted to the man who refused to pull out in time.
Steven warned her on rare occasions during sex God would not punish him for spilling his goods on the ground. He did what she cautioned him not to do. And now this. She felt upset, and by her book, had every right to be. Although being upset would not solve anything, at least having somewhere to direct her anger could bring relief. The more she thought of Steven, the angrier she got. So much she answered, “What?”, when Dr. Thorpe knocked on the door.
“Here’s the reminder of your next appointment date.” Even though she didn’t respond, he continued.
“On your next visit, you’ll have an ultrasound to determine the around about day of conception. We would like to get as close as possible to the date of conception so the little person won’t have to be in his or her mother’s womb a day or hour longer than needed”.
At least he’s not like other doctors acting as if they could specify the date of conception to the tee. Heck, I know precisely when Steven bombarded his way into my private space.
After hugging Dr. Thorpe without saying one word, she gathered her stuff, walked out the room into the waiting area, and nodded goodbye to nurse Carol. Retrieving her keys from the bottom of her champagne colored Steve Madden bag, she sighed. Put your big girl panties on Priscilla.
Her navy wool blazer did little to protect her body from the sharp piercing Louisiana wind. Instinctively, she draped her beautiful pink multicolored scarf around her neck and used the excess fabric to cover her head. Moving in swift strides, with hopes of keeping as warm as possible, Priscilla pushed the button on her keychain to her convertible BMW 435i.
She opened the door, placed the brown bag of goodies in the backseat, then climbed into her car. After securing the locks and her seatbelt, Priscilla searched through her car’s artist collection for some music to minister to her broken spirit. She selected Marvin Sapp’s “Here I Am.” “Come on, Pastor Marvin, convince me please God has His hands on and around me,” she mumbled as the song began to play. “God, I know You will provide for me. This is Your will.”
Invasive tears cascaded down her face ruining her makeup again. This time she decided not to repair, because instead of going back to her office, Priscilla drove towards home. With a quick push of the phone button on the radio console, she instructed the voice-activated operator to dial her office. After the third ring, a female voice answered.
“Good afternoon, Marshall’s Mortgage. How may we be of service to you?”
Regina answered with professional charm because Priscilla would have it no other way. Greetings were Priscilla’s pet peeves. She desired warm and friendly interactions with her staff and demanded the same for the clients at Marshall’s Mortgage.
“How are you?” Priscilla asked Regina Jones, the best assistant and secretary ever. She valued her because she only instructed her once for anything and it happened.
“I’m fine, Mrs. Marshall. How did your appointment go? You sound a little different.”
“We will talk about it later, Regina. Right now I’m too weak even to hear myself explain it. Nothing too serious, so don’t get all worried. But it’s enough to alter my emotions.”
“Okay, I understand. But it won’t stop me from praying for you.”
“Thank you. While you are at it, ask God if He’s sure He picked the right person?”
“You know they say ‘nothing just happens,' so if God allowed, He will provide with all the provisions you’ll need. Are you coming back to the office today?”
“That’s why I called. I think I better go home and lie down. The doctor’s appointment drained me, and if I do not get some rest, I might hurt someone. Would you please phone all of my afternoon clients, apologize for me canceling, and reschedule them for Monday?”
“Yes, ma’am. I pray you feel better. I will only call you if anything comes up I cannot handle and I’ll tell all of your originators what’s going on.”
“Thank you. I appreciate you. And Regina, please don’t disclose or share concerning my doctor’s appointment. I’m not asking you to lie, but find a unique way to explain the cancellations to my clients and the staff.”
“Sure and you’re welcome.” Priscilla motioned to move the phone from her ear when she heard, “Mrs. Marshall!”
“Get some rest, please!”
“I will.” Priscilla smiled at the demand.
“See you soon, Mrs. Marshall.”
Danyelle is the Senior Pastor of New Vessels Ministries North in Shreveport, Louisiana, who is a dynamic author of both Christian fiction and non-fiction books. She studied Theology at Louisiana Baptist University, has a Psychology Degree from the University of Phoenix, an Interdisciplinary Degree in Psychology /Biblical Studies, and a Master’s in Religious Education from the Liberty University. She owns Divinely Sown Publishing LLC and is an avid reader. She is the wife of Pastor Reynard Scroggins and the mother of three.
To find out more about Danyelle Scroggins the pastor or author, and her ministries, visit www.danyellescroggins.com, www.newvesselministries.org, www.facebook.com/danyellescroggins, or www.twitter.com/PastorDanyelle.
Website & Blog: www.danyellescroggins.com
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