Is God calling you?
This is the post excerpt.
Is God calling you?
Fear, we meet again. Didn’t we just have this same conversation last week? You say I can’t make it and this time it’s really the end. You tell me that everyone will shake their heads in pity or laugh at me. I’ve heard it all before and I’m tired of listening to you. You’re a liar. God said that I can do all things through Christ. He also said that even though I may fall seven times, I will rise again. I will put my trust in God because no one who hopes in Him will ever be put to shame.
I realize that God has never failed me but you, Fear, have done nothing but hold me back. I’m not sure why I keep allowing you to take up residency inside my head. Well, let this be your eviction notice.
“For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
After so many rejections, you can start to second guess yourself. You start wondering if you really were called by God. Maybe it was just my overactive imagination. I should probably quit now and just be content with my grown up job and let go of these childish dreams. It’s when these thoughts fill your mind that you have to force yourself to keep going.
You’re not really second guessing yourself, you’re second guessing God. If He has called you to do something and you have repeatedly received confirmation that you have been called to do it, don’t sabotage your future by doubting. Rejection will come but that doesn’t mean that it’s the end. It only means God has something better planned. Once He opens the door no man will be able to close it.
Now, get up, dust yourself off and keep doing what you know you were called to do.
“For though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again.” Proverbs 24:16 NIV
I’ve noticed lately, that when my work is rejected or if I don’t get a lot of views and comments on my blog, I get discouraged and depressed for days. It’s as if my joy is linked to what others think of me. Of course, I want people to read and enjoy my work, if no one reads it then what’s the point, right?
I know God has called me to be a writer. Writing isn’t a gift that is meant to keep to myself. I just assumed that if God called me to do it that I would be spectacular at it. After all, I’m created in His image and God is far from mediocre. So when my work is rejected I feel as if I’m not only letting myself down but I’m letting God down too. It’s like I’m not truly using the talent that He entrusted me with.
Well, after a nice long pity party, the Lord posed a question to me. “If you never receive one cent for your work or never receive any rewards and praise, would you still do what I called you to do and would you do it as passionately?”
Before I realized how much work, time, criticism, heartache and sacrifice was involved in doing what God called me to do, I would have said yes in a heartbeat but now this question gives me pause. I realize that answering this question reveals where my heart truly is. It lets me know who I’m really doing this for. Is it for my glory or God’s?
Our words are so precious, in them is the power of life and death. As writers we have a very powerful gift and weapon at our fingertips. Our words can potentially reach millions of people. If you’re a Christian writer this a huge responsibility. My reason for writing can not be for my glory. It has to be for God’s glory only. When I get to the finish line, I want to hear Him say, “well done, my good and faithful servant.”
“If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11 NIV
When I decided that I wanted to write, I didn’t realize it was a call from God. I didn’t even consider consulting Him on what I should write. I just wanted to write stories that were entertaining. I planned on being on the New York Bestseller List, make millions of dollars and have my books turned into Oscar nominated movies. Nope, I wasn’t expecting much at all.
I wrote my short stories and submitted them to several publications and writing contests and sat back and waited for the acceptance letters to roll in. What actually rolled in was one rejection letter after another. I became frustrated and discouraged. How could this be happening, I thought. All my friends loved my stories.
In my heartbreak, I finally got some sense and asked God what I should do. We can never leave God out of our plans, no matter what they are. God doesn’t want to be a part of our lives just on Sundays, He wants to be included in every facet of our lives. Once I realized that God was missing from my plans, I repented and I eventually received clarity. I allowed Him to direct my path and that’s when the real adventure began.
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21 NIV
I didn’t always want to be a writer. In fact, being a writer was the last thing I thought I would do. I always had a heart to help and encourage others but I just didn’t know how I was going to go about it. When I started writing it was just to help my coworkers get through a stressful day, working in a call center. I never dreamed that it was something that God was actually calling me to do.
Eventually, what started out as a way to entertain people, turned into an assignment from God to encourage and share His love. I love writing but I didn’t see myself becoming a “Christian” writer. My writing tends to be a bit more serious, some might even say it’s a bit on the darker side. I thought God made a mistake. How was I supposed to write for God’s people when I’m such a mess? Then the Lord reminded me of this scripture, “it is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” Luke 5:31-32 NIV
I knew that the Lord was telling me that it was ok to write about real situations. Sometimes, life is messy for believers and nonbelievers alike. My job as a writer is to remind the believers that God is still there and to let the unbelievers know that God is real and He loves them. Everyone needs to know that God loves them and He is mightier than any problem they are facing. More importantly, God wants to help and He’s waiting on us to call on Him.
The decision to write for God has been a struggle. I know this is a huge responsibility and I know that I may experience persecution and rejection but I keep on writing. I know that when God calls us to do something it is because there is a need that needs to be filled. We are God’s body-His hands, feet and mouth on earth. Life isn’t about glorifying ourselves but to glorify God.
I’m writing this blog to encourage all the Christian writers who have answered God’s call. What you do is important. I know it’s hard but be encouraged.
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” Jeremiah 29:11