It’s been a while since I’ve typed on this website. I’ve been slumped in a season of stillness, and I felt the Lord prodding me to just abide in His presence for a while, and resist the urge to publish my writing.
Here’s something you may not know about me, I don’t sit well. (Example: I can’t even get through an episode of The Bachelor without writing on my computer, checking my email, or writing a paper. And I absolutely LOVE the Bachelor).
You know how uncomfortable it is to have gum stuck on the bottom of your shoe? That’s how sticky I feel in seasons of stillness. I run from the idea of rest, and so often I find myself worshiping the idol of busy. It’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwinds of life. And if there’s anything I love, it’s being tangled in a project or adventure.
But about a month ago, I felt so weary and worn down. I found myself tangled in so many webs of commitment that I didn’t know how to be set free. My writing became stale, and I felt myself growing and stretching in ways that are difficult to put into words. So I felt a complete peace about leaving this forum for a while and prayed that God would give me the strength and energy to write once again.
That was really, excruciatingly hard for me, y’all. I do not like to take deep breaths, much less step away from my craft for five weeks. As I was driving in my car this morning on the way to a new job, all of a sudden I had complete clarity. I saw a light at the end of the tunnel, and words started to flow freely once again. I felt like running a marathon (which is surprising, considering I can’t walk up the stairs without being out of breath).
As soon as I stopped questioning WHY God was nudging me away from blogging, I was able to see with perfect clarity the condition of my own heart. Instead of finding contentment and satisfaction in my ability to compose pieces from my soul, I was dancing with the idol of Self. My writing had become an idol in my life, because I allowed it to take the place of my God. Even something good can breed sin.
It’s really difficult to pursue a creative industry where your success seems completely dependent on self. Writing is a craft, an art form, that can easily become a reflection of the composer instead of the Father. In this world driven by the digital marketplace, it can be extremely anxiety inducing to create a marketing strategy dependent on followers, stats, and likes. And I’ll admit, I was consumed by the idea of “branding” myself. When I was told publishers want to see that you have a digital following, it was hard for me to think of anything else.
But when I laid myself before the Lord, he revealed to me the ways my thirst for words had left me parched. It’s exhausting trying to do this life on my own. If there’s anything that following Jesus has taught me, it’s that its important be willing to chase Him with reckless abandon and put earphones in to block the chatter of everyone else.
I guess this as an explanation to you all, my wonderful followers and subscribers. Thank you for caring enough about my battered soul to read rambling pieces like this. Thank you for your words of encouragement, and empathy. If you’re a fellow writer struggling with the pressure of the industry, I completely understand. It’s a difficult path to pave. But true fulfillment in your craft comes when God is at the center.
I know I have a lot to learn, and I would never think that I “have it all together.” Please hear my heart, I am as broken as anyone. But with Jesus, he makes all my broken pieces whole again. Though my personal writing process was faulty, I know He will redeem it. Though I have been uncomfortable for five weeks, I know He ordained it. And He is inherently good, so it is well.
Maybe you’re wrestling with an uncomfortable season. If you are, please hold steadfast to the promises of Jesus. Let Him guide you and hide in the refuge of His arms. Let’s join hands and be uncomfortable together, pursuing the hope that He offers and resting in His shadow.