Writer, Pick Up Your Sword…
Does it often feel difficult to write? Like you’re in an uphill battle, swinging your sword, but with every five steps forward, you slide three steps back?
If writing feels hard, it’s because it is.
It’s a calling often misunderstood as a luxury or, even worse, as easy. It takes sacrifice – family, social plans, chores, and, sometimes, sleep. In a world so driven by busyness, poring over research books and sitting for endless hours at a computer screen may seem – from the outside world at least – like a gigantic waste of time.
I recently heard a sermon by Priscilla Shirer in which she described a moment on an airplane with her son. She was explaining to him that he could be anything he wanted to be and, if he was so fascinated by planes, perhaps he could speak to his uncle who worked in the field. After all, her son could work in the field one day too, if he chose. Then her son replied that he didn’t want to do what the uncle did, but what she did. Instantly, her mind went to writing Bible studies and encouraging others on their walk with Christ. However, he went on to explain how she did nothing. And he wanted to do nothing. He wanted to sit at his laptop all day doing… nothing.
Anyone who has read one of Priscilla Shirer’s books or Bible studies will know the incredible effort she injects into every one of her projects. We know she doesn’t do nothing on that laptop. In fact, we more than likely admire what she does and figure that she can invest her time in those projects because she’s a well-known Christian writer and she’s signed with a large publisher and she has important things to say to the world…
But what about us?
What about those of us who are desperately trying to show up at our desks and the effect or reward isn’t as obvious to the world? Maybe even to those closest to us? Maybe… even… (sometimes)… to ourselves?
We may appear like we’re doing… nothing.
It is a battle for any writer to finish that manuscript, that short story, that poem. It is a battle for any writer to show up and fact check and edit and edit and edit… and edit some more…
But it is also a spiritual battle for a Christian writer set on giving glory to God through their work.
So, dear one, if you’re feeling discouraged because of lack of book sales, or because you’re surrounded by others who just don’t understand your passion. If you’re beginning to take on the mentality that you’re doing a whole lot of nothing and could be spending your time better elsewhere… If it all feels too hard… If there’s no time… If there’s no inspiration left at the end of the day…
Don’t give up.
Because you have been called by the mighty God.
Please don’t take your calling lightly.
You will come against opposition. You will come against distraction. You will come against discouragement. But you will defeat them all if God has called you to this writing adventure.
Because He who has called you will equip you.
So even if you feel like you’re taking five steps forward and three steps back. Even if you feel like you’re barely holding on. Pick up your sword – the Sword of the Spirit, the very Word of God. And while you’re there, pick up your pen to wield as well.
Fight the opposition with Scripture. Fight against distraction with Scripture. Fight against discouragement with Scripture. Claim God’s Word over your calling. Bring your heart of worship to the desk. Pray fervently over your calling. Ask God for what you need to fulfil it. He can do immeasurably more than we can even imagine.
If you feel like writing is hard, it’s because it is.
But it is so worth it.
God can use us and our words and stories – the very ones He Himself has placed on our hearts – to change people’s lives.
All we need to do is bring whatever fish and loaves we have as an offering to Him, and He can multiply it beyond our wildest dreams.
“Seek the LORD and His strength; seek His presence continually.”PSALM 105:4
Dear Jesus, please help me to fight against opposition, distraction, and discouragement. Help me to remain in Your Word. Please bless me with the resources I need to follow You in this calling. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
This is very encouraging. Yes, it does take lots of work to do the research and writing required to get everything done that needs to happen to make a book happen. I agree that it can be frustrating when talking with others who don’t understand what it is like to write. Knowing that everyday I am going to have to sit down with my laptop and my thoughts, just hoping that I can put something together that I am proud of.
As someone who is intent on giving the glory to God with my book, this was very encouraging to read knowing that God will equip us if he called us to be writers. I know it must be God who called me to be a writer because I remember not enjoying English class when I was in school, and now here I am with a finished novel that is about to be published. That can only happen through the mighty hand of God who has guided me and called me to be a writer so that I might give glory to Him.
Keep up the good work. May God bless you as you work to give Him the glory and the honor.
Thank you so much for sharing your heart and journey in this space. It’s so encouraging to hear. I love how the Lord has given you this unexpected gift, even though it was something that didn’t necessarily resonate with you in school. I’ve heard another writer say the same thing. And it’s just a testament to the Lord’s working in your life and your willingness to partner with Him in obedience. Absolutely wonderful 🙂
I so look forward to reading your upcoming novel!