When I flew to North Carolina, in 2008, for the P31 Woman She Speaks conference, I had no idea the people I would meet. As I packed my things, Susan was already on God's short list of people in the blog-world I would soon call friend.
Who wouldn't love her? She's a soft-spoken fiery redhead (an oxymoron, I know) who draws you in with her love of the Lord. We were both there to learn more about writing, and more about having our ideas become published books. Two women out of our comfort zone, trying very hard to figure out how we could accomplish something we felt called to do. Both of us feeling overwhelmed and unqualified for the task that loomed ahead. We connected immediately.
Going into our publisher meetings we would encourage each other in passing, "Go gettum Susan! Your book idea is AWESOME! You are here for a purpose, and don't forget it. I'll meet you at dinner. I can't wait to hear what they tell you." I yelled to her over my shoulder, as we passed in the crowded hotel. Susan is one of those humble writers who aren't aware of the gift they possess. Another gift in itself, inspiring me to encourage her even more.
If you haven't had a chance to drop by Eternity Cafe, maybe today is the day you should. Susan has a faith-filled cup waiting just for you.
Without any further adieu, Susan Panzica!
Welcome to Blessed... it is such an honor to have you here Susan. Your blog has touched the hearts of many in the world wide web, mine included. I'm so happy you've agreed to share a little bit about yourself today!
So, let's start from the beginning. How did Eternity Cafe begin?
I first heard about blogging at the She Speaks conference. A few months later, I started blogging as a way to practice writing and hopefully be a blessing to others. It's turned out to be a special blessing for me. Called Eternity Cafe, it's my desire is to dialog with my readers as we might over a cup of coffee. Through stories and humor, I try to share an eternal perspective on earthly matters.
What do you/ don't you love about it?
I love the new friends I've made in the "blogosphere." Women who are encouraging and uplifting. I love that the Lord has given me words to share that I never knew I had.
I don't love how sometimes I spend entirely too much time in blogworld.
What has surprised you the most about blogging?
I'm surprised that I'm doing it at all. I'm surprised that God keeps popping post ideas into my head. And I'm shocked that I can figure out any of the technical parts of blogging!
Bloggers are usually writers. Do you write anywhere else or for anyone else?
I'm just beginning to call myself a writer, even though I don't really feel like one yet. I've been a speaker and teacher for years, but now I'm moving into the writing arena, and it's all new to me. It started with the idea for a book, which led me to a conference, which led me to blogging, and now that book idea may be moving toward publication which is both thrilling and terrifying.
Do you use your blog for your ministry?
As a speaker and Bible study teacher, I use my blog to share encouraging truths from the Word. The blog fits right in with my vision for ministry which is:
"My desire is to encourage you in your walk with the Lord, to edify (build you up) in His Word, to equip you to serve Him with enthusiasm and joy, and inspire an eternal perspective."
Who are a few of your favorite blogs to read?
Blessed - of course!
Lynn Mosher of Heading Home
Stuff Christians Like
and helpful writer's blogs like:
Have you ever met your blog-friends in person? If so, which ones?
Joanne, you and I met at She Speaks in 2008 before I was blogging. You are the one who was instrumental in helping me launch Eternity Cafe, and I'm so grateful to you for that.
Through your blog, I connected with Susan from Runner Mom, and then she and I met at She Speaks last year!
I've met Cheri Bunch (Seven Branches) and Susan Reinhardt (Christian Writer/Reader Connection) in person first and then followed their excellent blogs.
Who has made the biggest impact on your life?
That’s hard to say. In my life, I’d have to say my husband and my kids, my pastor, and some dear friends. In my writer’s life, God used Susanne Scheppmann from Proverbs 31 to confirm His calling in my life and as a great encourager.
How about some tried and true blog randomness:
Do you have a favorite scripture?
Eph. 3:20-21 Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
What would surprise us about you?
I am a Jewish believer in Jesus Christ who came to Him through a band in a bar. I worked for US Customs, so I was a Jewish tax-collector, like Matthew, and God used the book of Matthew to speak to me and lead me to Him.
What's your favorite flavored potato chip?
I’m a purist. Basic Lays. No ruffles, no ridges, no flavors.
Favorite thing to do with your family?
Vacation at the Jersey shore (or as we say “go down the shore”) or hang out at home with a movie or game.
What book is on your nightstand right now?
Last food you ate?
My homemade Pasta Primavera. Yum!
When was the last time you played the air guitar?
Absolutely never! But my husband and kids are musicians, and I like to silently sing along they practice.
Thank you for being a Blessed...guest, and taking the time to share a little bit of your life with all of us.
And thank you for asking! You are a blessing, and I am truly blessed to know you.