Monday, October 19, 2009

Courage

I had a conversation recently with a fellow writer, who is published, about the changes that will inevitably ensue if I ever "cross over" and become a published writer too. I confessed to her that my biggest (maybe my only) worry about pursuing a publishing career is what it will cost me. Will I have to throw over the rest of my life (friends, family, food, sleep), lock myself in a tower with my computer and bookshelves, and devote my all to writing in order to produce a novel in a year's time (something I've never yet accomplished), along with all the research involved, and only come out for quick trips to the library?

Despite that worry I'm still taking steps in that direction and trusting the Lord to know my limits better than I do, and slam shut any doors that will lead to my hurt.

But not all hurt is a bad thing. There is such a thing as growing pains.

Those who have read this blog for any length of time might know how much I enjoy Josh Groban's music. There are two lines from one of his songs that come to mind when I ponder these issues. It has to do with finding the courage to follow a dream, despite the risks. It's from Let Me Fall.

Someone I am is waiting for my courage
The one I want, the one I will become, will catch me

The song leaves God out of the equation, but there's a truth embodied in those lines nonetheless. You may have heard the saying, God didn't save us to keep us as we are. I want to grow, to stretch, to "enlarge the place of my (soul's) habitation," as it were. I want to become the person who can handle the reasonable demands of a writing career, and do so with grace and excellence. How else to become that person but to press forward--stumble or soar--trusting God to lead, direct, correct and provide?

A pretty big leap of faith. As if simply writing a novel wasn't a big enough leap, eh?

Saturday night I went to church. The teacher that night spoke about God's promises in unique (to me) vernacular. He asked us (and I paraphrase) were we content to merely window shop for the promises of God, like we would for expensive clothes? Are we content to read a promise in His word and say, "Oh, how nice. Looks just my size. Wish I could own that promise." Or are we going to say to ourselves, "God means that promise for me. It's mine. I'll take it! I'm going to put it on and walk around in it."

So here's a promise I claim. Again. Psalm 138:8.

The LORD will fulfill [his purpose] for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever--do not abandon the works of your hands. NIV

The LORD will perfect that which concerneth me: thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of thine own hands. KJV

I hope you will claim it too, for whatever concerns your heart, even if your dreams and hopes are so big they put a scare in you. He'll fashion you into the person you need to be to see those dreams fulfilled. And if they aren't His will, he'll give you new dreams and visions to follow that will be better for you, in the end.

A win/win, no matter how I look at it.

And in case you like Josh too....






4 comments:

  1. This is a common worry in my writing group. We're all moms, so there isn't exactly a day job to quite should we get published. But I really do believe that God has given us all certain gifts and I believe we'll be empowered to use them.

    Maisey

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  2. Maisey,

    That's it exactly. Yet I still have that battle with it from time to time. But always a conversation happens, then a teaching hits on that very thing, and a promise from the word comes to mind, and it culminates in a blog post like this where I remind and encourage myself. "Why so downcast, O my soul? Put your hope in God!"

    It's going to be okay. :)

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  3. You are so right - courage is so necessary. We must think alike as I've been working on a blog post that talks about writing essentials - and not just laptop and pens - but faith, courage, etc. I love your emphasis on trusting God to know our boundaries, etc. And He really does love us too much to leave us as we are! Often that involves moving us out of our comfort zone which makes us rely more fully on Him. Always a win-win situation:)

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  4. Laura,

    The older I get the more I see how the answer to every concern comes down to knowing the nature of the Lord, believing his promises, then resting our souls in that.

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