Does God have a plan for us when we are set adrift when our company is sold? I had seen the Lord provide a position at Here’s Life Publishers when I was released at Christian Herald in a cost-saving move. But now I was 62 and as former president considered not an acceptable editorial hire by book publishers I approached. I did have severance pay to tide me over for some months, but what then?
Before I wrap up my 11 years with Here’s Life Publishers of Campus Crusade for Christ (now known as CRU), let me reflect on a God Moment with long term impact.
The last installment introduced the God Moments that transformed Here’s Life Publishers from a money-losing struggle into a profitable publishing house, however, as I will reveal later, the cost was higher than anyone anticipated. But before I reveal the details leading to the sale of Here’s Life Publishers I’ll introduce tools for evangelism and discipleship we published to enhance the ministry of our parent, Campus Crusade for Christ.
How can God turn an overwhelming debt load at a publishing house into a series of God Moments? At Here’s Life Publishers we were a for profit subsidiary of Campus Crusade for Christ, with the chairman of the Board the executive vice-president of Crusade. What I did not realize when I arrived as editorial director was that Here’s Life Publishers was being kept afloat by regular draws on a “slush fund” at Crusade, that our losses would be half a million on sales of just over two million the year I arrived.
Two questions come to mind when thinking back to our move from Connecticut to Southern California in 1982:
What does a couple leave behind when forced to make a major move?
What unexpected consequences can imperil a successful transition?
When you are leaving a publisher for another one, what kind of farewell should you expect? I was obviously not going to a competitor of Moody Press, since the Christian Herald Association was known for its magazine and its book clubs, not its book publishing program. Despite that it came as quite a surprise when I was invited to have lunch with Dr. George Sweeting, president of Moody Bible Institute. Even though I had been acquiring editor for several of his books, I wondered what was on his agenda.