C: How has your faith shaped your approach to business?
R: I write often about preaching truth to myself. In the day and age of creative online business, it is easy to spin and toil, hoping to make it bigger, faster, splashier. When our hope in [God] is the most important thing about us, we’re compelled to conduct our business, our professional relationships, and our dealings with integrity and eternity in mind. My faith drives me to see each day’s work as an [eternal] investment, rather than as a race to get or accomplish more.
C: What was the motivation behind your new book?
R: There’s often a lack of gospel-rich resources alongside compelling and beautiful artwork. The two worlds tend to not mingle often in the publishing world. My desire in writing and creating the artwork for GraceLaced is to offer a volume of foundational truths to meditate on as we walk through different seasons of sanctification and growth.
Because we often wrestle perennially with seasons of doubt, identity, obedience, and trust, the book is organized by “seasons of the heart,” — in which we must rest in God’s character (winter), rehearse the truth of our identity in Christ (spring), respond in faith (summer), and remember God’s provisions when we grow weary (fall). My desire is that this book would be a worship “primer” of sorts.
C: What did God teach you while writing and promoting your book?
R: He taught me Ephesians 3:20 throughout the process. We — as writers, creatives, and entrepreneurs — often take credit for how well we perform or produce, but sometimes forget to acknowledge how much we are carried by grace. Because this book was written during a season of great pain and weakness in my life, I often felt inept and insufficient. But that perception ultimately became a blessing, as I acknowledged and looked to Christ for every ounce of grace needed to both create and deliver this “labor of love” into the world.
C: What makes GraceLaced different from other books on the market?
R: GraceLaced is one part coffee table book, one part devotional. It’s equally a gift book as it is a resource. My intention is for GraceLaced to be a book that [can] be passed down to loved ones as a keepsake or heirloom. It documents a spiritual journey and an experience through the timeless truths of God’s Word. With over 800 individual elements of art, lettering, and photography — along with 32 “more-than-pep-talk” meditations through Scripture — GraceLaced is a glimpse of truth and beauty in our daily walk with the Lord.
C: If you were a season, what season would you be … and why?
R: I’m currently in the fall season. I am remembering that [God] provides and sustains when we are weary and spent. In fall, the harvest and bounty often leaves us worn and ready to take inventory. That’s where I’m at. I’m grateful for the fruit, the work that is not in vain, and the big seasons of growth. But you can’t endure and persevere without [resting in] God.
C: What message would you like the readers of GraceLaced to receive?
R: One phrase I use in the introduction to the book is that “You don’t have to be blooming to be growing.” I began saying this phrase to myself as I considered all the ways the Lord grows us in every season — even the ones that don’t look fruitful. Seasons and circumstances change, but the truth of the gospel doesn’t. Therefore, we look to the Word to hold us fast as we wait on [God] to make “everything beautiful in its time.”
PHOTOS: COURTESY OF RUTH CHOU SIMONS