Tag Archives: Christian writers

When You Finally Know Your Why – What Do You Do Next?

​”A great many Christian workers worship their work….There is no responsibility on you for the work; the only responsibility you have is to keep in living constant touch with God…” 
– Oswald Chambers,
My Utmost, April 23, “The Worship of the Work”

This was one of the fastest posts I ever wrote. Sometimes it comes out this fast because the thing that blocked it is suddenly removed. When I first wrote this, I’d just listened to about 30 book pitches at Mount Hermon, and given the opening talk the previous afternoon, a thought based on a blog post on “writing for one master.”

I always have an amazing time at the Mt. Hermon Christian writers conference. And much of the reason is that it’s always a thrill to connect with old and new writer friends. I’ve written about the essential value of writing friends a lot. But for a week every year over Palm Sunday, I get to receive from and retreat with a whole group of fellow frazzled faithful freaks all at once. And it is always such an amazing time.

If you were ever misunderstood in your life, or felt alone and unimportant to those around you, or if people  put you in a box, or you learned to protect yourself out of necessity, or spent years hoping someone would see you but secretly hoping they’d only see what you wanted them to see, and you’ve struggled to speak in your real voice…then you know what makes this conference so special. That’s the same stuff literally thousands of writers are coming to terms with and finding out they’re allowed to feel and reveal and then deal with so we can heal from it together, and finally become real together in a safe place of grace.

Now you want to come, and I would advise you do. Move heaven and earth to save up and make it happen because it’s not just about the books deals that happen there or even ultimately the professional craft that gets established, but the community of like-minded believers relating together–both sharing their stories and finding connection in deeply personal, universal identification with each other. 

Content, craft, and community are what every writer needs to learn to navigate, and all those things get unpacked, shaped, and embraced in the essential freedom of knowing there’s a big community waking up to God through pursuing the work alongside you.

The path of freedom for Christian writers is always found in seeking God through his always surprising process of inviting you toward the higher purpose, in wonderfully diverse unity together.

But as special as it is, this isn’t about the conference, or the great week I always have there, or even seeing and celebrating the amazing fruit of so many people’s life-investment come to greater fullness.

And the reason this post came so fast the first time is because I’ve finally seen it enough times to believe and know in my heart that God will use anything and everything to draw the world to Himself. That isn’t up to us. But also it is. We are given dominion and ownership over our small part, to cooperate in the work for His higher purposes.

Years have passed and some people leave and are lost to me. But many come back and my heart swells with pride and gratitude to see them still plugging away at this work for the higher purpose. They take what I and others have sown and use it to grow. And I see I’ve had a hand in some amazing stories all because God drew me to seek the joy of refining words for books, and loving the process and the people who pursue them.

Those people are my people, His people. They’re constantly taking their call and calling to others to be connectors in their circles and learning to look beyond the struggle and the pain to all the stories that point to His story endlessly reiterating in reflected refrains throughout time.

That story of what God is doing to unite us and draw all things to himself, it will never end.

My amazing “boost clinic” crew from 2018

So to all my old and new writer friends, know the dream is alive, and can never die. And wherever you are in the process, until we meet again…

Go light your world….

“The thing which is, but is not named, cannot be known. If you have no word for it, you can’t talk about it or think on it or consider it or meditate upon it…To name a thing (as art does) is to clothe it in visibility. To name a thing is to make it knowable.” 
Walter Wangerin, Beate Not the Poore Desk

Forever, for the Higher Purpose,

Mick

 

The 6 Spiritual Lies Derailing Your Writing Process

I spoke at the Northwestern Christian Writers Conference this past weekend, where 675 writers came to learn and be encouraged to take the plunge. This is the message I shared.

I was a book editor for over a decade before I realized that Christian writers all share similar delusions about what this work entails. And when I coach writers to embrace the struggle, the first lesson is to keep showing up for practice until that habit breaks through all the usual barriers.

To serve the reader well, all authors must begin by taking their writing more seriously. Memoirists, novelists, pastors, counselors and lots of amazing people have battled these lies and won.

I want to give you some of their fail-proof strategies for beating these lies for good.

But first, we’ve got to realize these lies are common, and they take writers out all the time. They attack your process, your book, and especially you yourself. And the major problem we have in fighting them is that they are spiritual. They aren’t primarily intellectual or physical, or even emotional, though they relate to all those areas as well.

What’s derailing you isn’t any of the problems you have in the external world of your daily life. It’s your lack of spiritual defenses.

How do I know this is primarily a spiritual problem? Because life is spiritual, and trying to live as a WORD-saturated writer is hard. Working to reclaim, recall, and re-establish truth, love, justice, and mercy is incredibly draining. The work itself is incredibly difficult in all the usual ways, but it takes some time to understand that your major barrier is in the spiritual realm, and that you need to bring that down to earth, and deal with it in your physical reality.

The goal is to establish your writing process and create the system that works for you. And everyone’s different, but the calling is the same—writing is holy, sacred ground. You’ve been called to help your brothers and sisters in the faith.

The most important thing for writers is confidence to write free, edit with skill, and move toward publishing a book you can be proud of. Practically, this involves recognizing the scope of this undertaking, and searching out the spiritual truths involved in establishing the process. There will be sacrifice, some vulnerable truth-telling, and most of all, the need to be willing to go where God leads.

The first lie that can stop spirit-led writing is:

  1. Who do you think you are? This is fear of who you may not be. This is about shame and the deep insecurity that comes from not knowing who you are. There are related fears of presumption. Some people become terrified of the attention, the spotlight, the idea of fame. Others crave it as their golden idol. The solution, the middle ground, is to forget what others think and just write the truth for God. His opinion is all that matters and he has said you are the one to write this. Do you trust him enough to simply write and not worry about who you are or aren’t?

That’s the permission you need to claim to get through the first draft. It’s free grace and it’s available to anyone who wants it.

With this one, when Satan tries to tell you you’re nobody, you can just agree and say, “but God says I’m somebody.”

  1. You can’t handle this. / You aren’t ready for this. Fear of all you don’t know. Maybe you’re too incompetent, or the task is too demanding. Maybe you have trouble learning. But none of this has to do with you not being enough. You absolutely have what it takes when you decide not to let your ignorance, inexperience or anxiety over your disqualifications stand in your way. You will be enabled, prepared, and made capable when you believe it’s not about your being enough, but that God in you is enough.

This is a primary lesson of every Bible story. The people in the stories were not enough. It wasn’t about them. Even Jesus. He frequently was overwhelmed and in his humanity, he didn’t have enough to give people. But in his Godhood, he did the miraculous. And he pointed the way to deep faith that releases captives and sets people free.

You might fear you don’t have the time to learn everything you need. Irrelevant. You have as much time as anyone. You make time for what you really want to do. Find it and protect it. Get help and delegate whatever’s stealing your time away. Or maybe you fear you can’t afford that training or the editing you need. Well, maybe you wait and budget and find alternative methods to learn what you need to first from the best books on editing and publishing. Writing is very egalitarian that way: either you can get what you need or you simply don’t need it.

Can you learn to research and discover what you need to adjust for the second draft when it’s time? There will be things you need to augment about your characters, plot, and settings, and things you need to diminish that are distracting. If you can let go of what you don’t know yet and look at the big picture, you can learn to design the intense emotional experience you want to give readers. That’s what matters. You can learn how to do it by doing it. Practicing.

  1. You’re too _____ (Fill in the blank:
    • Uneducated/unsophisticated/slow
    • Broken/damaged/sinful/hurt
    • Old/young/boring/inexperienced
    • Ugly/fat/beautiful/skinny
    • Weird/different/OCD/ADD/SAD
    • Busy/poor/confused/gullible/lost/distractible
    • Isolated/disconnected/easily-missed-or-forgotten

This is fear of the past. The old nature. Things that hold you back. But you already know the old self has died and you know who’s now in charge. It’s not up to the old you. That voice doesn’t matter. Listen to your guide. The past is gone, the new has come. This goes back to the 1st lie and believing you’re trying to be someone you’re not. But writing isn’t some sort of magical in-born talent—it’s not like singing where you’re just gifted with a beautiful voice or you’re not. Writing is a gift, but plenty of bestselling writers have no more natural talent than the average ditch-digger. They’ve just practiced it a lot.

I said it was 6 lies, it’s really 3: the lie about where you are, the lie about where you’ve been, and the lie about where you’re going. And this lie number 3 is primarily about where you’ve been.

The question is, are you willing to believe that stuff doesn’t define you any longer? If you are, then you can start fine-tuning your manuscript draft number 3 by simply accepting that the shaping and fine-tuning of the specific details, set-ups and transitions simply takes practice.

Here’s a trick you can employ next time this one comes up, because it’s a big one for most of us. Like with #1, when you’re worried about being too broken or unworthy, remind that voice that no limitation in you is a limitation to God.

  1. You’re wasting your time. This is fear of judgment, or fear of people rejecting you. Despite all the work and effort you’re putting in, it’s just not going to be enough, and you’ll never be able to achieve that bright vision you’ve seen in your head. It’s too far out there on the horizon. You should just give up and go work on some other pursuit because this one’s a pipe dream.

It’s insecurity, mostly, but it’s got a lot of fear of the unknown mixed in with it. You can’t know what’s going to happen, whether you’ll make money at this (probably not) or fall on your face and be a big failure. More than likely, you are going to fail the first few times out. You can’t win a marathon, let alone break records without failing a bit and getting some hard lessons in the process. Maybe your fear here isn’t so much about others as it is a fear of failure.

Whether you fear failure or success—and those two do go together, don’t they?—it’s the fear that’s the problem. The lies are always going to be there. You can’t do much about that. All you can do is learn to deal with them.

They can’t hurt you if you know how to handle them. If you’re not afraid anymore. Then they have no effect. And that’s the reason you’ve got to face this.

If you can accept that your failure or success is irrelevant to the practice of writing you do every day, then you win. All you can do is show up and prove that a writer isn’t someone who makes a lot of money, or even necessarily publishes; a writer is just someone who writes a lot.

That’s the freedom you need to push through draft 4, to refine the sentences, words and phrases, and focus on choosing the best words to give your work style and help distinguish your voice.

  1. You’re all alone.

This is one of the most basic of all fears.

Many writers nurture a secret fear that they’re the only one who struggles like they do, or the only one who has never read Moby Dick, or who doesn’t know what a split infinitive is. Or who can’t afford to travel for research for their book. Writers have dealt with the writer problems since the beginning, and every writer has been an exception in some way.

You’re not alone. Reach out to the people God brings to your life. Use their help and offer your own to them. Critiques, editing, and coaching are all necessary to becoming the whole writer who can handle reader’s questions (more on how to do that right here).

  1. You have nothing.

The idea, the point of your book, is your reason for writing–but it may change. This is hard to accept. Sometimes it’s very clear why, but sometimes it will change on you, and you’ll hear this lie: See? You have nothing here.

Sometimes you’ll hear it as, it’s been done before. And maybe it has or maybe it hasn’t. All you can do is research and try to stay up on the glut of competing titles releasing every week. But even then, you need feedback as your secret weapon to determine whether it’s hitting the mark or the idea feels dated. Experienced, qualified, and often paid help, is absolute gold for you because they can tell you if you have something or not.

Most of the time it hasn’t been done before, certainly not the way you will do it. And if it ends up too close to what another has done, there are ways to solve that.

But this lie may connect with number 3: You’re too [whatever]. It’s one of the most common one-two punches I see. “It’s over, old lady. Or “Go home, little man. No one cares.” A very effective way for the devil to diminish you, your work, and your heart all at the same time. He mocks you for not seeing your book clearly, and then for caring so much about it when no one else seems to.

Plenty of writers won’t survive this. The ones who stuck with it and got help figured out their angle and proved it wasn’t just them who saw this. And others were helped by it.

You don’t have nothing. You have everything. You can make a difference for someone, for a lot of someones, if you’ll just believe.

I said 3 lies? It’s really just one about you: they all say be afraid! Isn’t that the core of all this? Maybe it’s time to start fighting back, realize it’s just par for the course, and stop getting taken out. Start fighting smarter.

Christian writers, every one of us has to learn how to fight fear on a spiritual level. This is ground zero to your writing process, and you’ve got to start thinking of this as part of the work.

Fear is simply a lack of trust. And if you want to trust God more, you’ve got to start seeing where He’s at work and all you have to be grateful for. Start seeking the evidence. He promises when you seek, you will what? Find.

All you have to do is want it. It’s the wanting that matters.

You don’t have to give the lies power.

Fear not. Believe.

You are loved. And that love is your infinite power.

For the higher purpose!
Mick

How to Get what you really want this christmas

What if this short message could absolutely deliver what you really want this Christmas?

Do you know what that is?

What do you really want?

IMG_4721Deep down, we all want the same thing. But so often we don’t know it until we can get quiet and listen to our deeper hearts.

In fact, I think just doing that–just saying no to the destructive demands constantly drawing our attention away–that may be the way to the peace and joy we’re really looking for.

So how? How do we block out the myriad distractions, and open our inner eyes to see better what we really want?

This is what I want most this year. And after the incredible challenges and distractions we faced in 2016, I’m willing to bet this is actually what most of us really want for Christmas.

To get it, we may need to quit ignoring the truth. The truth our deeper selves know.

DSC_0132

Last year, when Charlotte came home from a class Christmas party with her gingerbread house, she said a younger boy had teased and “pretended to attack” the girls the whole time. And her anxiety over that, of being a target of aggression, even the kind that doesn’t actually entail assault, it felt all too familiar.

I remembered I’ve been a target of bullies too.

I wanted to call the cops on this cretinous demon child.

Who does he think he is? Who are his parents? Are they complete jerks?

As a kid, survival sometimes means hiding from the destructive demands of bullies, to live and create and seek beauty another day. As I’ve grown, I’ve learned there are many of us who face this, the quiet ones, the melancholies and creatives, the “deep rollers.” I began to teach Charlotte about boundaries and defending her space, even as I started practicing more myself.

But I believe all of us need to learn to say no to distracting demands.

The message in church had been on the necessity of making room. Of taking responsibility for making room in our hearts for Jesus. As John the Baptist instructed followers, I was convicted to repent of the destruction and distraction I’d allowed others to bring on what I knew was my sacred space. Their demands had long forced out and prevented me hearing the call, and my deeper need.

John’s repentance wasn’t for doing more for God, but remembering our duty to honor him by making room, getting away, and listening for that “voice in the wilderness.” In our distraction today, we’ve filled up our wilderness with all sorts of things we consider our obligations. We, like they, are “missing the mark,” the very definition of sin.

But for the Baptist, getting away from all that distracted from God was “making room” for Christ. This was getting right by Him. This was repentance.

Maybe it’s just me, but I always thought repenting meant being sorry for who I was–a weak, self-centered boy preferring peace and quiet to the real work of loving God and others. And that’s often true. But it’s not sinful to need space to recharge and get away to hear God within. And this year, it might finally make a sort of spiritual sense, at least for me:

Repentance is not merely confessing your sin. Repentance is also making a change to make room for God.

DSC_0201I think this is true whether we’re innies or extraverts or doers or thinkers–or anything in between. It’s only the way I’ve found to embrace the freedom to be me and recognize the primary place of God in my life that provides permission to get away and make space.

It’s been a very freeing idea to pursue this year. Why had it taken me so long not to feel deficient for needing peace and quiet?

You can get so used to feeling weak, so constantly feeling like a broken person, unable to withstand the “normal” busyness and noise of our modern culture. But if you had not just a right, but a duty to act against it, to defend your heart and make space to worship and be changed by God alone, it could free you up to better understand this deep love we all need.

DSC_0044It’s been a radically different view of repentance for me. And it’s still growing in me this year as I come to Christmas once again. I believe that longing for a solitary, one-on-one experience with God is built into the human heart.

I believe this longing for a solitary, one-on-one experience with God is built into the human heart. It’s the comfort and acceptance and permission we all want most, this and every Christmas.

This desire for that kind of unity, just such a singular commitment, this is the oppositional way, the deeper desire his true followers share.

Isn’t this how love might “abound in more and more knowledge and depth of insight?”

And maybe it’s only from this protected space that we can learn to meet the needs of our needy world with any real love to share. Filled up by that primary relationship, we may become recharged and reformed by Him.

That’s what I’m looking for this Christmas.

Safe, embraced and known.

Will you renounce all else and make room in your heart for him this season, to receive the greater gift of a deeper love?

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best….

– Philippians 1:9-10a

For the higher purpose, this season and throughout the coming year,

Mick

Why You Need More Writer Friends

Last week, I wrote about my writer friends and how they have kept me going. I was blown away once again by this huge hidden resource of friends. And the emails and notes of affirmation following that post only proved it all the more.

I’m a lucky son of a preacher man.

"And then I said, 'Listen, Muse. You ain't too big for me to paddle!'"
“So I sent the agent my rejection of his rejection letter and I said, ‘Please don’t call. I’m too busy killing you off in my novel!'”

What I didn’t say is how incredibly life-giving it is to point my finger to the ones truly responsible for my successful career as an editor and “aspiring inspirational writer.” As a practice, nothing I’ve done has brought more confirmation that I’m where I need to be, despite the struggle.

Sure, it’s great to know I’m doing what I love. It’s exciting to get to help people while exercising my gifts and creating vulnerable, refined works of art. But what makes it truly the greatest experience I’ve had? That goes to knowing that all of these people, these unique and remarkable inspirers are friends of mine!

Think about it: the strongest bonds a creative person can create are those created with other creative people. And those who labor to share their experience honestly and humbly through artful stories are the most transparent and vulnerable creative folks in the world.

How sad so few people will ever know the kind of connection working on Christian books creates. It’s an unusual bond, transcending time and space, where you’ve shared your deepest pains, tears, and your secret ambitions, and sacrificing everything to invest yourself fully, patiently, and for the good of others.

Books bond people, but when all of this goes into them, it fuses and forges, tempering this friendship in the process. I’m not idealizing it–such bald honesty isn’t always serene. But you know your friends are true when time together instantly bonds you, but time apart also does nothing to diminish that connection.

Writer friends can help you escape fires!
Writer friends can help you escape fires!

Today, when we’re more connected but disconnected than ever, the friendships of Christian writers are all the more vital as oases of unconditional love and trust. And we need to be investing all the more.

We know powerful friendship can happen in the best churches, on the mission field, and as a soldier fighting an oppressive enemy together. It can happen on special projects among team members, when living through significant life events together or when facing terrifying situations and you’re stuck together in a hostage crisis for months on end. All these people tend to end up bonding.

But inspirational writers have experienced all these things together–and come out the other side.

We all know every harrowing curve of that cave.

Everybody needs someone who can understand and share our pain. But inspirational writers have a greater need to find something beautiful and life-giving in it, which lands them in a uniquely close and energizing select group.

And it’s undeniable: when you accept the call and the challenge to express your spiritual and emotional core in clear and unique language, you get adopted into an incredible family. Never mind if you haven’t published. And never mind if your book isn’t their cup of tea or you don’t understand proper etiquette or don’t “bathe regularly” (God bless you, Chris Farley).

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- Phil Hartman, Chris Farley, May 14, 1994 (Gerry Goodstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE — Phil Hartman, Chris Farley, May 14, 1994 (Gerry Goodstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

If you’ve faced the real battle in the dark cave, you’re in.

You’re family.

I’ve been the beneficiary of so much warm kindness and generous training by the people who’ve made me their focus, simply because they get what it’s like. They know how exhausting working on books is. They know the sideways glances from our original family members as we continue on, the serious financial straights, the long hours fighting for one! STINKING! WORD!

Can anyone else appreciate what this kind of understanding community is worth? I’m willing to bet for some people it’s meant the difference between a successful book and no book at all, between deep comfort and an ugly addiction to Jack & cokes and late night TV, and literally the difference between life and death.

For many, this fellowship of fools is their life-preserver.

I suppose it’s the stigma we worry about, this writer psychosis. But it’s real. And when you write for God, sometimes the people you think should understand (the good faith-filled people who honestly get God), they don’t get this writing thing at all.

“You know how when you have a really great idea and you want to give it to your main character but he just won’t take it, and he decides to thumb his nose at you and walk right out of the scene…?”

If my emotions were tacos, I would be so stuffed right now!
If my emotions were tacos, I would be so stuffed right now!

[blank stare]

Or: “I really hit bottom this week and had to step away over trying to wrestle out the specific distinction between mumbling and muttering.”

“Uh-huh…I think I hear my wife calling.”

[Disclaimer: I have not attempted either of these conversations with normal people….recently…in the last several months.]

But when you admit those things to a writer? They HUG you. They know your address and they call you by name. They know you got off the sane train two stations ago and that you fear much of your work is largely a self-involved cry for help.

Do you think knowing other writers helps? No one else has any idea how much it does.

Writers know we’re all just looking for someone to hold our stories with us and help us feel less crazy.

And these beautiful, wonderful people I name among my friends, my peeps, they don’t judge. I suppose maybe if I started swinging from the chandelier and throwing furniture–then I’d be fair game to become one of their stories.

Get more Peeps in your pie to face the dark cave with you!
Get more Peeps in your pie to face the dark cave with you!

But I’m confident they’d do it in an honoring way.

Writers, don’t miss your chance to bond with the inspiring friends you meet. Ask about their time in the cave. And share about yours. They are just as scared and crazy as you–probably more so. And if you’ve struggled to make normal friends or feel accepted and seen by your family, your church…God…well, all the better. So have we. And short of your relationship with God, Christian writer friends are honestly some of the best relationships you’ll ever be blessed to know.

And I just can’t quit saying it.

Why We’ve Got to Learn to Say No

“There is only one way to defeat the enemy, and that is to write as well as one can. The best argument is an undeniably good book.” Saul Below, The Living Novel: A Symposium, 1957

I think no matter who you are, no matter how you grew up, every Christian writer struggles to say no to others.

bug

Some may learn to say “no” readily. But many writers start out avoiding saying no to people at any cost. We’re avoiders and pleasers. We may say “yes” initially only to avoid the inevitable confrontation, then say “no” later by avoiding the situation.

I’ve done it regularly. Habitually. And I’ve seen it done for years.

But everyone who writes has a unique call and so must rise above this.

And in my experience with Christians, we rarely, if ever, acknowledge the essential importance of saying no.

Oh, we say no to sin. And to anything deemed “questionable” or unsafe. But to other Christians? To the church or (God forbid) the leadership? That might not reflect well on our presumed holiness.

Churches don’t give out gold stars for saying no.

flower

People who don’t go to church can get away with it. Some may have first found permission by leaving. Yet how many are saying no to the wrong things or in unloving ways?

The point is, we need to learn how to say “no” well, and our model human opposed both the typical Christian and the disengaged and hardened folks alike.

He said a lot of loving no’s to people. And often.

He said no—in love—to strangers, friends, crowds, the disciples and Pharisees—in other words, to everyone.

Why is this so important? Because unless you can say no in love, even well-meaning Christians can create barriers between you and God’s will.

Saying yes means nothing unless you can also say no. Only “no” can correct and refocus people when they’ve gotten off track. Only “no” can move the attention away from its wrong focus. And only a loving heart can use no to affirm the goodness and love inside the opposition.

bird

Unfortunately, “no” seems so ignored among Christians today that most can’t handle the slightest hint or whisper of it. Now we have to treat adults as children and instead of “no,” offer a firm “thank you for understanding why I can’t serve at that event,” or “God bless your commitment. I’m already giving elsewhere. I appreciate your graciousness.”

If only that was acceptable.

Years ago, I set out to help Christian writers say “no” to the forces that opposed their higher purpose. I thought I’d be fighting the godless consumer culture. Instead, I’ve found the greatest opposition can come not from culture but from the church.

If you’ve had trouble saying no, you’re not alone. And you need to get alone to yourself for at least 30 minutes. Take a notebook and pen and go imagine your future 10 years from now if you can commit to the vision God put in your heart for you to write. Write down what you see.

Imagine it and then believe that one day soon, that will be you, successful.

That is who you are going to be.

Circumstances do not dictate this. People do not dictate you.

God is vision-caster, the Great Imaginer, and when He gives his called artists a vision, He’s saying that one day, it will be your day. But if you never commit to it, and especially to saying “no” to the ungodly demands, expectations, unspoken rules and implicit requirements placed on you by a restrictive church or family or culture, it will never be your day.

sleeper

We can’t sacrifice our God-given vision for a person or an image or a church. We must use our gifts for the Person and His image and the Church at large.

If you’ve failed to say no in the past, repent and move forward. Claim your gifted strength and know that every failure along the way is one less you have to make now.

Mistakes are necessary; they’re how we learn to value what we eventually gain.

But we’ll never get to where He’s called us to go without imagination and belief.

If you will go and write the vision, you will see where you will be. And you will know you can not quit.

You have to go get it.

So decide to believe. And He goes with you. And there is no fear because fear is not real. Fear is choosing to respect doubts as greater than the future reality. It’s believing things that are not or may never be true are true. That’s insanity. Fear is a choice; we can chose not to fear.

You can simply choose instead to believe the real vision. Choose it and own it.

As Tozer said, there is blessedness in possessing nothing. Yet a vision is a pure gift, and possibly for artists, our primary possession. You can have this vision if you have focus. And you will have it if you don’t quit.

But the first step before anyone else will believe this vision is you believing it.

So all that matters is, can you say “no” to say “yes” to your vision?

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If you’re ready to jump, the 30-Day Story Course starts Friday. Four lessons, four evaluations by me. $500 $99