I've just completed my current work in progress. The last few weeks have felt like I've been swimming in a pool of glue. I was so keen to finalise the last draft, but I got stuck at chapter seven. No matter how hard I tried I couldn't continue on. This resulted in giving myself a swift talking to.
What created my demise? Self doubt. Ecclesiastes 1:3 came to mind -
"What does man gain from all his labour at which he toils under the sun?"
I began to think, so why do I write here in my office all day long while the sun is shining outside? I hear the children laughing as they play; I hear the wind in the trees; and the cars going places. They all seem to have purpose, but what was I doing? Typing words into a computer. What for? Would there ever be any end to this writing work I'm doing? All these questions and more bombarded me from every corner of my mind. I was stuck on the last draft of my novel with another twenty-nine scenes still to edit. The work stretched before me seemingly endless. Will it ever be finished?
I sat back and took an honest look at where the work was going and the reason why I write novels. On the wall of my office I have my mission to "Inspire women to heal from past hurts and be the women God created them to be." If I didn't finish this draft, this manuscript had no chance of crossing a publisher's desk. That means I would not only fail in my work, but most importantly I would also fail the women I want to encourage. A half-baked manuscript wasn't going to reach anyone.
So I found a quiet spot and shared my frustrations with Jesus. We discussed my doubts, my human failings, my insecurities about my work. After sharing with Jesus my burden didn't seem so overwhelming. Jesus was faithful as always and gave me his mighty power to finish the work. He reminded me it's not about the end, it's about the journey and what we learn on that journey.
That wisdom was timely.