Last week I got to meet Max Lucado, Thelma Wells, Allison Bottke, and Jennifer Kennedy Dean all at the same place. “Where was that?” you may ask. I was blessed to participate in the Christian Book Expo held in Dallas, Texas.

Personally, I had a great time at the first ever – and maybe the last – Christian Book Expo. All the top Christian publishers displayed their resources. Hundreds of authors participated and signed books. The three days were filled with great panels and workshops held by experienced and knowledgeable people.

So, what was the problem? There were just as many exhibitors and authors as there were Christian consumers. But why? Maybe it was a lack of advertising. Maybe the nature of the Expo was not clearly communicated. Maybe it was because all of Texas was on Spring Break.

The disappointing turnout aside, God blessed my time at the Expo. First, I met some of the New Hope (my publisher) staff I’ve worked with, but never met face to face. They are all godly people committed to producing quality books and resources for Christians. Check out their website at

Kimberly Sowell, Chandra Peele, Edna Ellison, me

Kimberly Sowell, Chandra Peele, Edna Ellison, me

Second, I had the privilege of being part of a panel with four other New Hope Bible study authors. Edna Ellison, Kimberly Sowell, Chandra Peele, and I shared on the topic “Leading Women in Bible Study.” The turnout for our panel was one of the best all weekend, which simply reveals the importance of the topic. The ladies who attended truly desired to better equip themselves to lead the women in their churches.

pict0008Third, I got to rub elbows with some of today’s top Christian authors. I met Max Lucado in the lobby of my hotel and later had him sign a book for my daughter and her fiancé. I chatted with Thelma Wells on the convention floor. She sprinkled her conversation with “honey” and “baby” and made me feel like I was her long lost friend. However, later in the day, when she attended a luncheon where I spoke briefly, I got a little nervous. After all, she speaks to thousands at a time.

Me and Jennifer Kennedy Dean

Me and Jennifer Kennedy Dean

Meeting Jennifer Kennedy Dean was a treat. Last fall, the ladies at my church went through her study “Live a Praying Life.” God taught us so much through that study, so it was great to get the opportunity to tell her.

I shared a hotel room with Kathi Macias. What a sweet woman of God! With over thirty books to her credit she is still down to earth and encouraging. Since I knew weeks ago that I would be rooming with her, I picked up one of her fiction books to read before I met her. But I’ve been so busy I didn’t finish the book before I went and ended up reading the last four chapters with her in the room!

Yes, I was greatly blessed by the Christian Book Expo. God confirmed to me He is working in and through many lives all over our country. He has provided an abundance of Christian book and resources to help us grow spiritually and carry on ministry in our churches. And He has raised strong, faithful Christian authors and leaders who have a voice in more than just our Christian circles.

I hope the Christian Book Expo happens next year. Maybe you’ll get to go?

I’d love to hear from you. What Christian resources do you use? What Christian books you read? What authors do you connect with?

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