The author, educator and speaker recently published the sixth book in her popular, Mama B series, Mama B, A Time to Plant. It is the latest in a string of Christian fiction books that connect with readers.
“I think about 34,” she said of the number of books she’s published so far. “I’ve lost count at this point.”
Despite being a prolific author and the financial and spiritual benefits that come with it, like most moms, Stimpson has to juggle career and family.
“I always feel like I’m behind on a book,” she said. “I’ve learned not to let it overtake me, but it always kind of picks at me.”
Still, over the years, she has learned to make it work.
“The kids are gone from the house now, so my schedule (and my life) is a lot more flexible. I’m trying to write more, and I do some contract work here and there as an educational consultant,” she said. “Hubby and I try to get out every once in a while, but he’s a home body, too, so we just spend lots of time together at home. I know. It sounds boring. But we like it.”
She has also has more time to focus on her passion to help wives. As part of this, she has developed a free video series called The Wife Academy, which is available at hopeforwives.org.
“I’ve been married for 22 years by the grace of God, and I mean that for real for real. If it had not been for Him tearing down our entire marriage and rebuilding it from the ground up, we wouldn’t have made it,” she said.
“I want to encourage women who are in difficult marriages (or difficult seasons of marriage) to surrender to God first and then see what happens afterward. We can’t change our husbands. And often we resent them for being imperfect, when the truth is many of us don’t submit to Christ (the perfect groom), which makes it all the more difficult to work with an imperfect person. So let Him work on us first. That’s my message.”
For other moms who are pursuing their dreams while raising their families, Stimpson offers this advice.
“Seek God. I talk to many young wives/moms who are trying to do too much at once. You can have it all, but you can’t have it all at the same time.
“Once God confirms that it’s time to move forward, know that whatever He has you to do will require risk and faith—so get over making your life so fail-proof that you don’t need Him to show up. When you’ve got too many of your own Plan B’s to fall back on, you don’t throw yourself fully into His Plan A. Being in the place of ‘give us this day our daily bread’ is not a bad place at all because what you’ll learn is that every day, He gives.
“Practically speaking: Talk to your husband about the possibility of scaling down your lifestyle when you first start. It won’t always be that way, but you do need to re-evaluate wants vs. needs if you’re quitting a job, going part time, or dedicating much of your income to start-up. Drive that car another couple of years, get on YouTube and learn to do your own twist-outs, cut back on eating out—those are just a few practical things.
“When I stopped working full-time and went to consulting so that I could write, my husband was totally on board. He had faith that I could become a successful writer, and that was such an encouragement. He was willing to cut back on some things, too.
“As for the kids, they enjoyed knowing that I was home writing…well, most of the time. When they hit the pre-teen years (which is at the same time after-school-care ends), I came to realize that they actually needed more supervision during that period than when they were a little younger. I’m absolutely convinced that being an active part of their lives during their transitional years led to the great relationships we maintained during their teens. I still enjoy them now that they are young adults.”
With all that she has going on, Stimpson has no plans of slowing down any time soon.
“I’m working on a book for wives with a Christian counselor,” she said. “I’m also working on a full-length romance, which I haven’t done in a loooong time…In the coming years (now that the kids are gone) I see myself speaking more, both on writing and spiritual matters.”
To learn more about Michelle Stimpson, visit www.MichelleStimpson.com.
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