“But by the grace of God I am what I am,
and His grace toward me did not prove vain” (1 Corinthians 15:10).
My Daybreak story has been over twenty years in the making. Now that I look back, I can think of nothing else but the Left Behind books that first sparked my interest in the rapture and end-times studies. I only read the first two books in the series, but they clearly made an impact on a girl who had no history or understanding of God’s prophetic Word. Oddly enough, this was also the catalyst that made me suspect I could write a novel. I had lived my life with stories rambling around in my head, but up until then I had never suspected that one might land on the pages of a book someday.
In the years to follow, a parallel journey began, understanding prophecy on one side and learning how to write on the other. It’s interesting to note that I never considered writing a story about the rapture or the last days. I’ve only recently gained this understanding: Back in February, when the Lord laid this assignment before me, those two pursuits converged into one path as Daybreak dawned in my imagination.
When March of 2020 came, because I had been watching for signs of the tribulation over the years, it didn’t take me more than five minutes to see Covid as a major sign. I was never scared of a virus with an over 99% survival rate and went about my business unmasked. But as I encountered the fear in the eyes of masked shoppers at the grocery store and the increasing scare tactics used by the mainstream and social media, I quickly discovered that the enemy’s hand was all over what was happening. His goal has always been to steal, kill, and destroy. I never doubted that the Covid virus was anything but a bioweapon. I knew it. I’ve since watched many videos where renowned scientists have studied the virus and agree that a natural, wild coronavirus was manipulated by man in a lab.
Prior to the summer of 2020, it had been a few years since I had focused on last-days signs. I began to do some investigating on YouTube, looking to see what others were saying about the rapture. That was all it took. One video after another led me to the deeper and darker truth: We are really here! Through the Covid plan-demic, the enemy is truly setting the stage for the Antichrist’s total control over the people through the rollout of what they call a vaccine.
I spent the remainder of the summer and throughout fall with one question pounding in my head like a headache: What can I do? I’m a doer. I can’t not do something; that’s just how I roll. I recorded a brief rapture video. I didn’t do a great job of it, but at least I was doing something and trying to warn people. The video got almost no response from my friends, which didn’t surprise me one bit considering how most people I know are way more focused on here and now than then and there.
At the time, my little pup of fourteen and a half years, Zoe (Popie), was terminally ill and required around-the-clock care. If you knew us, Zoe and me, you would know we were a set, a pair. Where Mama was, Popie was. It had been like that since she came to be mine. She sat in my lap while I wrote every single book that I’ve published. Because I was so depleted and crushed by her illness and impending death, I had little strength to even know how to jump into this end-time skirmish. The Lord Jesus, being the sweet and tender friend that He is, told me to take time to be with Po and then to grieve. So I took November and December, the month she died, off. The Spirit made it clear to me that, come January, He would tell me what was next.
January came, and rather than Him leading me into battle, He whispered, as He’s inclined to do, that I was to complete what was before me. That was the still uncompleted book, Under the Gun, the sequel to my first published and most popular book, Unmending the Veil. To follow a book so beloved was daunting, but by that time the story was well over seventy-five percent complete.
As directed, I spent January completing UtG. All throughout the month, however, the question, what can I do, ever reverberated in my head. Each time I sat with the Lord and asked, my heart pounding in helplessness as I watched our world crumbling, He gave the same assurance: When Under the Gun was finished, He would tell me my next steps. So I got back to work and trusted His timing.
I did finish the book by the end of January, then waited. On February 5th, a memory came of back in 2019, when I released a nonfiction book back to back with a fiction book. What came to mind was the difference in reception by my readers to those two books. I had a big release party for You. Are. Loved., the nonfiction book, and offered presales of Room to Grow. Over the next few months, as readers began expressing how much they loved Room to Grow, I would ask how they liked You. Are. Loved. The response was almost always the same: “Oh, I haven’t had time to read that one.” Very few readers even cracked open the pages of the book.
Those responses didn’t surprise me at all. My two decades of being involved in ministry showed me how reluctant women are to look within, how uncomfortable it makes them for the Spirit to dabble in their business. In those years I also learned that fiction is a great way of slipping truth into the minds and hearts of readers, kind of like mincing veggies and slipping them into your spaghetti so that your kids will eat them.
Along with that memory came my reminder from the Lord: I’m a fiction writer; that is my lane. Until then, I had in mind that for me to “do” something that would make a difference, it had to be videos or some other big something to get people’s attention. Instead, He gave a very simple directive: Stay in my lane, be who I am, and do what I do. (In case you don’t know this, that’s what He wants for you to be too—you—the you He created you to be.)
I started working on Daybreak on February 9th and completed it by June 14th; that time included a trip to see grand babies, a round of Covid, a guest in town for a few days, and a week-long vacation. Still, in those few months a complex story came together. Keep in mind that I didn’t even have a storyline when I started. It was the craziest thing how I wrote the story more as if I were reading it. I was as surprised by all the twists and turns as you likely were.
Never, ever, in all my years of writing, have I encountered Jesus—the Word—in the way I did through writing Daybreak. Anytime I use the word “I” as if I wrote the book, I feel like a fraud. I’m not so sure I would even credit myself as a co-writer. The expression Paige used, words falling like dew from heaven, was exactly what I experienced. I have to be totally honest with you: I’m just not that smart. I know me. Yes, I remain swimming in and saturated by the Word, so that did allow the Spirit to bring to my recollection verses and themes and imagery. Still, it flat out wasn’t me.
The way the facts of today’s world were laid out so systematically, that was God. The emphasis and reemphasis of the Groom coming for His bride, that was Jesus. The imagery of the Father sending the Son as a comparison of the Apex sending Wyatt for Paige, and the concept of the Son preparing a place for His bride, all of that a complete accident on my part. I just stumbled into it all by the guidance of the Spirit. My absolute favorite parts of the book are still stunning to me when I go back and read them. They weren’t of me.
It feels good to get that off my chest, to deflect any recognition I might receive for the story. Most of it came as a total shock to me. Paige singing “How Great Thou Art” slayed me. Moses just showed up one day to save Paige. The shield and strength and shield and song verses, the inspiration was purely from the Word. So we can all thank that storyteller Jesus, the Author and Perfector of our faith, for Daybreak. My role was to be obedient and show up each morning in anticipation that He had a story to tell.
I recommend the same for you as you try and figure out how to share your own Daybreak story. Just show up. Read the Word faithfully. Pray with expectation. Then do what He says, when He says, and how He says. You may not feel as if you’re blazing brightly or warning enough or waking enough. But if you do what He says, then your success is in your obedience. Plain and simple. Trust Him to guide you and give you the words you need to share your own story.
Finally, this: I truly hope to write Sunset, the sequel to Daybreak. And along with Sunset or maybe somehow contained within it, if the Lord gives us enough time here, I plan to write Nightfall, a devotional for the left-behind, unborn-again sheep. How else will they be fed if we don’t cast our light ahead to those desperate and starving sheep lowing beneath a constant cover of darkened sky?
Thanks for reading my Daybreak story. Now get busy crafting your own. Speak forth—or write forth if that’s more your lane. Even when the enemy whispers to stay quiet, remember: Your voice matters.
Her warnings and wakings wouldn’t likely be taken well by most.
That had to be okay with her. She just had to be a willing messenger,
to speak forth what she knew, to expose what was coming.”