Heart to Heart
There’s no better way to describe Elizabeth George than as the title of her best-selling book A Woman After God’s Own Heart.
On the day when all Americans celebrate their independence, Elizabeth George and her husband Jim are feverishly working to make deadlines on their next projects. From the Georges’ home just across the Puget Sound in Olympic Peninsula, WA, they can hear the fireworks and festivities of the Fourth of July, but Elizabeth and Jim celebrate in their hearts.
Tonight, Elizabeth focuses on her eleventh Bible study. This one’s through the book of Ephesians.
“Every day is a good day if I can sit down and get into God’s Word and think of all the women I know,” Elizabeth says, “and just picture those women in my mind and heart, and try to bring something out of the Scriptures to make today a joyful day in the Lord.”
But Elizabeth has been bringing the truths of God’s Word to life for women long before her writing career even began. With her husband Jim as an associate pastor in California for 25 years, Elizabeth, a pastor’s wife, taught a Bible study and composed curriculum for the women at the church.
While at the church, an editor from Harvest House Publishers came into the church bookstore and saw her workbook and tapes. That day, Elizabeth received a phone call that would change her life. The editor from Harvest House asked her if she’d be interested in writing more Bible studies for women. They all prayed about it, and Elizabeth accepted the offer. “God opened that door, and it’s now the passion of my life,” Elizabeth recalls warmly.
Loving God with all Your Mind was the first book, and its debut was so widely accepted that it launched her expansive writing career.
That was 13 years, 40 plus books, and 4.2 million copies ago. Now, Elizabeth’s ever-growing repertoire consists of 14 best-sellers, including A Woman After God’s Own Heart, which has sold over 735,000 copies; A Young Woman After God’s Own Heart and A Young Woman’s Walk with God, which are in the top 10 on the Christian Booksellers Association (CBA) best-seller list in the Young Adult category; and A Woman’s High Calling and Life Management for Busy Women, which has been honored with “Premier 100″ status from the CBA in the category of the top 100 best-selling books.
Today, Elizabeth sits with what she calls her latest “baby.” Finding God’s Path Through Your Trials just came in the mail today—hot off the press—and Elizabeth cradles it in her lap, awaiting the end of the interview and the moment she can crack open the spine.
“I’m not sure I could have written this book earlier on in my writing career,” she admits. “But just as you go through life and every season, and the new challenges and trials that each one brings…[you can] look back at the variety…and how you made it through, what you learned, what the blessings were, and how much better you know God on the other end.”
Speaking of challenges, one of the biggest challenges Elizabeth faced in her writing career was actually the career itself. For Elizabeth, it was a complete lifestyle change in learning to communicate Scripture through the written word rather than the spoken.
But Elizabeth still manages to vocalize the truths of God’s Word at various speaking engagements, conferences, and compliments of the airwaves with a minute for busy women on her daily, radio vignette A Woman After God’s Own Heart. Elizabeth records for this program four times a year.
Out of this radio ministry came Jim and Elizabeth’s non-profit organization After God’s Own Heart. For over three years, this organization has been an avenue to share the blessing with others who are doing the work of the Lord.
Elizabeth and her husband are also praying about the possibility of a 30-minute radio program, which could be the next step.
With Elizabeth’s ever-growing, busy schedule, one might wonder how she finds time for her author husband, two daughters, and seven grandchildren!
In a word: priorities.
And Elizabeth has her list of priorities in order. “I try to practice my priorities and still be the world’s best wife to Jim and the best mom I can be to my girls, understanding how busy they are…they are my life. I believe they know they are number two to Jim and, of course, God is the ultimate priority. Then beyond that comes the writing and the speaking.”
(Aha! So, God first, family second…and then she finds time for everything else.)
“It helps to know [your priorities],” Elizabeth says. “And then, every day, to plan with those in mind and just work your way down the list.
“It’s a daily decision. Who’s the most important person? Your time is limited. Your energy is limited. How can you spend it in the places God is specifically asking you to spend it?”
Getting to Know You
Did you know that Elizabeth…
was born in Oklahoma on November 11, 1944?has 3 brothers; 2 older, 1 younger?celebrated her 42 wedding anniversary with Jim on June 1 in Paris?is a mother of two daughters, Katherine and Courtney?
Life Verse: Philippians 3:13-14
“I feel that verse takes care of our past, our present, our future, and that the prize of the upward calling in Christ Jesus is the goal. So we have a life goal and a prescription of how to get there.”