Starting something is hard. Finishing it…even harder.

As of August 19, 2023, Thirzah is the first-ever graduate of The Comany’s full-time apprenticeship program.

Thirzah spent two year working side by side with me. She dramatically improved her writing craft, became a professional writer, and grew in her walk with God. She and I have walked through a lot together, and I’m proud to call her a friend.

During her time with me, she wrote short stories, a couple of novel drafts, published her first book, learned about audio production and narration, developed editing and book production skills, and so much more. She also helped me launch The Pearl.

(Hear Thirzah’s pre-graduation interview with me on The Company Podcast here.)

Two years ago, Thirzah saw what we were doing and she took a step of faith. When she applied, there weren’t any other apprentices yet, let alone graduates. But she felt God tugging on her heart, and she said, “Yes.”

After Jesus resurrection, he appeared  to (doubting) Thomas, and told him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Jesus was of course prophetically speaking not just of Thomas, but of all of the future believers who would believe without encountering the physical presence of Jesus. But I think there’s a more widely applicable Kingdom principle at work here, too.

Blessed are you when you respond in obedience to God’s call, even when you don’t have evidence to support it. Blessed are you when you take steps of faith in defiance of the world.

I think there is a special blessing upon Thirzah, because she is one of those who did not see, yet believed.

Apprentices that apply now can look at books that have come out of the program like Every Bush Afire and The Librarian’s Ruse. They can talk to our current apprentices to learn what it’s really like.

But Thirzah came in faith for something that could not yet be seen. She has plowed ground, and because of that, others behind her will reap an even greater harvest.

We’ve now welcomed a new class of apprentices into the program, in our new space in Cambridge, Ohio. I’m not going to call Thirzah a Guinea pig, but we learned and improved a lot over the past two years. Every apprentice from here forward will owe a debt of gratitude to Thirzah for taking that first step of faith and persevering in the call.

Together, we bless and celebrate Thirzah.

You can honor Thirzah by becoming one of her fans. You can follow her on Instagramsubscribe to her newsletter, and buy a copy of The Librarian’s Ruse.

You can bless Thirzah by praying for her. As she embarks on the next phase of her journey as a writer, she still has a lot of work to do to continue publishing and bring the pieces together for a sustainable career.

As Thirzah graduates, I lose an apprentice, but I gain a fellow-in-arms. The Kingdom gains a warrior, shining a light into the dark.

May she burn brightly and forever.

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