This Journey We’re On

If you told me ten years ago, I would become a published Christian author; I would have bit my tongue trying not to laugh in your face. In 2008, I worked an average of eighty-two hours a week as a Capture Strategist and Proposal Manager for a large aerospace and defense contractor. My focus then was positioning my company to win lucrative multi-million dollar, multi-year contracts. As I stated then, the work I did saved jobs.

I loved my work and the team of professionals assembled around me. Still, work left me unsatisfied. I crafted eye-watering executive summaries, created contract-winning take-away messaging, and horizontally integrated selling messages across fourteen different volumes and two thousand pages. Each page read as though written by a single author. After contract award, the cycle began again. It was onto the next capture, proposal response, and contract.


I enjoyed the accolades and awards, sizable annual bonuses, and a congratulatory pat on the back now and again, as anyone would. All of it left me wondering what more God had planned for me. Many considered me a talented business writer. I knew in my heart my efforts made no real difference in the world. In fact, I recognized how the world controlled me as I immersed myself in it far too often. I longed for more.

I took advantage of an opportunity to retire early. Two years after retirement, my wife Diane and I found our way to a tiny rural community in northeast Texas. God led us to settle right smack at the intersection of the Piney Woods and the Red River Valley. Growing up in a rural lifestyle and enjoying the many benefits of a small town life, I longed to return “back down south” after retirement. I can’t tell you I pictured my Chicago born and bred Italian-American wife and I living on a small farm and cattle ranch in Texas. We followed where God led us. Our Cross-Dubya ranch was born in 2013.

Outsiders in a close-knit community, we prayed for God’s guidance. He graciously led us to find wonderful neighbors and a spirit-filled little country church that accepted us instantly. Not as “Cooperites”, but as fellow believers. Little did we understand how this was all part of God’s plan for us. Soon, I was writing devotionals, preparing bible lessons, and studying God’s word more than I had done in too many years. Diane found fellow scrap booking and craft friends. Together, they began a card ministry to support and encourage residents of women’s shelters across north and east Texas.

Happy with our new life, my wife and I were settling in well. Then, God said “Now share my gift with the world.” At that moment, I became a Christian writer. With wonderful mentors and writing friends from around the nation, I continue learning my craft and seeking to glorify God with the talents He gave me. I’m still uncertain where this journey will take my family and me. I know I wouldn’t miss it for the world. My greatest hope is that I follow the path God has already laid out for me, with as few self-made detours as possible.

I pray you continue with me on this journey. I will do my best to encourage, inspire, and help guide you to a richer life in Christ through faith. Please join with me as an active participant in this journey we’re on. I look forward to hearing from each of you, with questions, suggestions, or other comments to help me find my way along God’s path for our lives.

... then one day God said "Now share it with the world." At that moment, I became a Christian writer. Share on X

God’s blessings…


4 thoughts on “This Journey We’re On”

  1. It’s good to learn so much about you. I’ve been encouraged and challenged by your comments and courtesy on other web and blog sites. So glad you have one of your own. You can bet I’ll be following it, Sir. Can’t wait to see how God uses you in this new venture.

  2. I love this, J.D.!!! I’m so glad you are doing this! I am eager to read more as you write and share. Thank you for following the Lord’s leading and being willing to step out. We need words of hope and encouragement so desperately!
    Blessings, my friend!
    Sarah Van Diest

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