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Time is on My side

18 May Posted by in Meetings | 2 comments

I got a new computer this year. It’s a MacBook Air–yes I”ve gone over to the “those creative types” side, for whom a PC just isn’t hip enough. Mostly I like it because it’s light weight and since I haul my laptop with me on all my travels this matters.  The thing that made me stop and think is that I got a new laptop when I first started on this writing journey.  And now it’s dying. My pursuit of story excellence and publication has seen its first casualty. Farewell, Toshiba.

For a moment I stopped and realized how long its been that I’ve been doing this writing thing. Six years.  When I started writing “for real”, Borders still existed. Meredith Vierra read the news. No one knew what cake pops were, or a venti, for that matter. Of course I gave up the dreams of “written today, in Barnes & Noble tomorrow” after that first year, but still.  It’s been a while.

In that time I wasn’t just blogging. I went to conferences, bought and actually read books on writing, joined ACFW, and attended my local chapter. And waited for a contract.

Nothing. I got my, “why, God, is this taking so long,” out of the way in year two, but I have refreshers periodically. And you know what? His answer is the same every time.

A writer I met via email once sent me a note. It was in this period of questioning, of impatience, if I may be so honest.  She reminded me of Joseph, who knew from childhood that his destiny was to be great.  And yes, it happened. He ended up second to Pharoah.

BUT…before that he spent seventeen years as a slave and prisoner.  Seventeen years.

Moses led the people of God out of that same slavery.

BUT…he spent forty years in the desert as a sheep farmer first. Forty years.

Suddenly my six years isn’t sounding so weighty. And even if it takes another ten, is it what God has called me to? Thus, the answer He gave me four years ago, still holds. When I was on my face asking why the process was taking so long, God said,  “It’s not. It’s just not our time yet.”

In that process, He taught me to welcome him into the words on the page. He, after all, is the most creative being ever, so its a good idea to let him brainstorm with me. He taught me that every hour I spend nit-picking a sentence to make it better, every afternoon I spend outlining a scene to write, and every word I put on the page is me fulfilling my call. While I certainly hope and work to see my book on the shelf someday, I don’t have to wait until I get there to be in God’s service. It is the simple act of writing, even if no one sees it, that brings him glory.

So, for my fellow unpublished writers, take the pressure off. Your work has value, and not just in its potential. It has value because it represents time you spent honoring your call.

For published writers, from all I hear the pressure to succeed only grows when you do have a listing on Amazon. So, take a deep breath and step back from that. You write for the Most High God of the Universe, and he loves it. Not because of how many stars or reviews it gets, but because it is the expression of a story He inspired in your heart.

As I write now on Lief the MacBook instead of my old Toshiba, who never earned a name, I am–for today at least–content to write my very finest for God. And trust that there is nothing beyond that I can do today to see my book in print sooner. I will write for God, and trust. Because if he can make a slave a ruler and a desert-monger the leader of a nation, he can handle my writing career.

  1. Jenny Miller05-18-12

    Wow. Great piece! This is an incredibly timely piece for me. I’ve been impatient lately, and I get more impatient with each ‘failure.’ You’re piece reminds me that God is at work and I still have plenty of time!

    Now, if He could give me more patience and less anxiety about the future, that would be nice.

  2. Debbie05-19-12

    Perfect reminder. Perfect timing.

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