When I get email from readers, it’s because something struck a chord. I receive messages with questions, with gratitude, and some sharing painful stories. It’s an honor to pray for those I don’t know from around the globe. I could never have have anticipated conversations with people in various African countries, the UK, Thailand, and more.
In this amazing online world, I get to share the love of God with others who just want to love and be loved too. This kind of connection reminds me how God sees each of us and believers make up one large and hugely diverse family. I smile with tears.
As a writer, it’s easy to get caught up in all the tasks and to dos. For those who don’t know, there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes of a writer.
There are the words to write, the technical things to know (to get the words out there), the email lists to work on (which include setup and all kinds of management details), images and graphics to prepare, social media to engage in and more, depending on what you do. Video, audio, editing video and audio, and numerous forms of content add to the task list of sharing content so people know it’s there.
Some Days are Great and Some, Not So Much
Some days are exciting and you feel like you’re knocking things out. You’re thrilled to do this because it meets a need and it’s in your wheelhouse. Chad Allen often shares a quote by Frederich Buechner that captures this feeling so well.
The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.
Have you ever felt that place? Is it something you long for? I feel it when my work serves the audience I was designed to serve. I offer words and content for Christian’s who want to heal from hurts, grow in faith, and live emotionally healthy and free.
I also serve Christian Communicators who feel called to rise up in their unique spaces and places through words. Communicators who deal with the tension of gaining followers as a follower of Christ and they want to do this thing without losing their soul in between. We call ourselves Rise Up Writers.
Serving in this place doesn’t always feel good and it certainly isn’t always easy to do. Some days are just plain exhausting. Some are frustrating and more, they can bring you to tears because part of you wonders if it’s all worth it. The enemy does his darnedest to get Christians discouraged and disbelieving. And when you lead in some capacity to spread hope and healing, you’re going to face a heap of challenges.
It’s hard for others to understand why writers do what they do.
There’s an interesting need that comes up frequently when I hear writers conversing about the writing life. Writers need writers in their lives just as much as they need non-writer friends. A lot of writers don’t get the support they desire from those who are closest to them, it usually comes from others who are farther away. It can feel even more isolating when this happens.
Sadly, some lose friends and connections because of misunderstanding and a high level of relational expectations.
I know many Christian communicators who want to love where they are and love others far away too. Something propels them to keep going when it just doesn’t make sense or it gets too hard to do. They persevere even when they feel stark naked and afraid to keep revealing the words that need to be released.
God is at Work Even When You Can’t See it
Suddenly, you get a glimpse of confirmation from God somewhere in life. It could be a word, an image, or something someone said.
Or, it could be the email you receive from a reader that comes out of the blue. Then your heart remembers, the todos are important. Like anything in life, there is a level of things that need to get done. But, it’s not the end goal.
If we focus only on the things, we’ll miss the people in between. It’s about letting God work in and through you. And it’s about the people along the way. Again, like anything in life, it’s not all easy and fun but it is a huge blessing to partake in.
Right here, I smile with tears again because it’s a bit overwhelming to get to do this. It’s what I love and I don’t want to stop. I don’t want to miss the moments of beauty that come from those I love near me and those who receive God’s love through me.
Whatever it is that you love to do, may God shine in and through you as you do it. I set aside writing for years to change diapers, homeschool kids, run a library, foster children, and live a whole lot of life.
None of it was wasted.
Whatever it is you long to do and you’re not doing it yet, may God give you the strength you need to persevere right where you are. Embrace what’s right in front of you now and the bigger picture you can’t yet see.
None of it will be wasted.
Every step of faith is a step God uses, even when others don’t understand. Keep stepping with Him
[click_to_tweet tweet=”Whatever it is you long to do and you’re not doing it yet, may God give you the strength you need to persevere right where you are. Embrace what’s right in front of you now and the bigger picture you can’t yet see. #RiseUpWriters” quote=”Whatever it is you long to do and you’re not doing it yet, may God give you the strength you need to persevere right where you are. Embrace what’s right in front of you now and the bigger picture you can’t yet see. #RiseUpWriters”]
[click_to_tweet tweet=”Every step of faith is a step God uses, even when others don’t understand. Keep stepping with Him. #RiseUpWriters #amwriting” quote=”Every step of faith is a step God uses, even when others don’t understand. Keep stepping with Him. #RiseUpWriters #amwriting”]
[click_to_tweet tweet=”Whatever it is that you love to do, may God shine in and through you as you do it. #RiseUpWriters” quote=”Whatever it is that you love to do, may God shine in and through you as you do it. #RiseUpWriters”]
That Buechner quote is one of my absolute faves!
It’s like the proverbial nail on the head. 😉
I’m spending the next five days alone. It’s miraculous, no really! The weather will be rainy though my heart is sunny and 65 and I know I’m suppose to push into some new spaces but the gift of time isn’t always motivating to me. Thanks for the encouragement this morning!!
What a gift to have the time alone! At least, it would be a gift to me. 🙂 I am lifting your time up today. May God use it in unexpected ways and may what He does be encouraging to you even if challenging or confusing at first. May He speak to your heart in a special way and reveal more of Him. Blessings to you and all you are doing in your journey with Him, Marcy.
Thank you for this. I admit I have been a bit discouraged lately. I heard the call to write years ago as I was in God’s Word reading about David. God whispered to my heart, “David had a sling, you have a pen.” And then He took me on a journey of healing. I attended my first & only writers conference and came home ready & confident in my calling. Started a blog (although God called me to write a book even giving me the theme / title) so began just writing about my struggle & what He is doing in my life. I just feel stuck right now? Any advice, wisdom or encouragement? One of my closest friends who I thought would be my biggest supporter never even reads my blog! I do not have very many readers. I read all these blogs and feel illiterate in the tech world. I know without a doubt I heard God speak into my life but feel powerless at times to even sit down to write (something O have always enjoyed?)
Renee, What a powerful word from God. I know how exciting it can be to start and then how discouraging it can feel when the writing feels purposeless or overwhelming or..so many other things. I’m sorry for the frustration.
Many of my close friends do not read my blog. I suspect this is often the case for bloggers. I’ve learned it’s OK. As a writer, it’s our job to write for the readers God brings and it can take a while to find out who they are. Our closest friends are often not our reader base.
For today, while the struggle has you feeling stuck, what if you scheduled time to write 3 ways (in a journal).
1.) Write totally for fun and explorations. Say whatever you feel like. Whatever raw thoughts come to mind.
2.) Describe a reader. Then, write for a specific reader that comes to mind. If you can’t think of someone, they may be a lot like yourself. At this point, it doesn’t matter who you’re writing to. You’re practicing writing for a specific person.
3.) Copy a blog post you’ve truly enjoyed. Make it one who’s writing inspires you. Do not publish it or plagiarize it. Simply practice a different person’s writing style.
Practicing writing in different ways can be spark new ideas and increase enjoyment in writing again.
When it comes to the technical pieces, choose ONE thing to focus on. Ask others for help. Look for groups. Research it. Don’t overwhelm yourself with all the pieces. Just one piece, one step, at a time.
Dear Renee, remember this. You sensed God speaking to you before. He can and will do it again. Keep making yourself available and listening to Him. It’s easy to get caught up in all the things, but taking a step back to just breathe, create, and listen again can rejuvenate a weary heart.
I hope you are encouraged dear Renee! The writing life is definitely a journey.
BTW, If you need specific help, I offer writer coaching and consulting as well.
I know exactly where you are. God called me sometime ago to start a newsletter and I drafted the entire thing and then paused, uncertain about what was next. I didn’t hear anything so I didn’t do anything, was that wrong, probably a lot. But back to you. Recently I went on to start a blog, like you, not many followers and I think that because most of us are introverts and I’m ok with that but like you said, my “best friend” never makes any comment whatsoever about my posts, not one. However, I recall reading once that it doesn’t matter about the likes, comments, shares, or whose doing the reading, our task is to plant. The article was about planting seeds and don’t you know God is all His wisdom and spoken to be about the seed and when I read that article it became my confirmation. So when scripture tells us, don’t look to the left, don’t look to the right, but to stay focused on the course, that’s what we’re to do. Stay on the course. Presently I’m attempting to do two books, I can’t help but multitask. One is an inspirational poetry type and the second is about relationships. I’ve prayed moreso about the poetry book since that is where it all began and I would like to complete it this year. So everyday, I’m either writing a new poem, reviewing an old, or reviewing some notes/ideas about writing. This seems to help me a lot. But it does take preparation. To get unstuck, you have to have a plan to write. And as the great writers always say, just write. Sometimes just rewriting something you’ve read, an article or poem, can get you unstuck. Make the plan and give it your all. And sometimes you need to research which is part of the writing experience as well. So stay encouraged. Review where you are are ask the Spirit to lead you where He would have you to go next in your writing.
Stay encouraged and keep moving,