Last week I read Lies That Can Poison Our Writing Career by Kristen Lamb
The first lie she deals with is this: “Lie #1 I’m not a real writer until I have a finished manuscript, landed an agent, am traditionally published, am selling books, have spent my retirement funds earning an MFA in Creative Writing.”
She goes on to say: “The title is not something we earn it is who we are. Our title defines our level of commitment.”
Am I truly committed? And, as I pondered the question, God hammered home things I need to pay heed to.
This Sunday, Marks sermon was based on Joshua 1:1-9. Listen to the words:
After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Great Sea on the west. No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.
“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
A couple of things struck me from Mark’s sermon. First, God promised Moses much more than the Israelites received.
Why? God tells Joshua: I will give you every place where you set your foot. The Israelites simply did not step out in faith to receive all God had promised.
I, too, haven’t stepped forth in faith. I have tentatively placed my foot onto the ice, to see if it will break under the pressure, to see if I will fall into the icy depths. I have not strode into my writing life strong and courageous. Instead, I have gone in with fear and trembling.
Second, God tells Joshua to: Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
God will be with me. He will guide me. My job is to stay focused, to meditate upon his word and then he will give me success.
That certainly doesn’t mean I’ll never fail.
Many people have been watching Tim Tebow’s team, the Broncos, in the playoffs. The Broncos were crushed by the Patriots, as most of the world knows. Tebow had this to say: “I just wanted to show character. You just continue to fight, and it doesn’t change who you are, who you play, how you go out there. You should be the same at all times. That’s what I wanted to show. It didn’t matter whether it was the first play or the last play or you were down by 42. I was going to be the same player and I was still going to give everything I have. Because that’s all I have to give. Every time I step on the field, I’m going to give my whole heart, regardless score-wise of what’s happening.”
Failing doesn’t matter. We still keep our focus, stay the same, still remain children of God, and give everything we have, our “whole heart.” When we do that, God will give us success. It may not be success by worldly standards, but, it will be success in the way God measures success.
And, so, no more testing the ice. I own the title, Sheila Hollinghead, author, for I know God will be with me wherever I go.
Care to join me?
What title do you commit to today?