Not so long ago I was talking to my oldest daughter about writing. She (unlike her mother) has now graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English with a concentration in creative writing. It is her dream to be a writer and she is quite talented. Her professors seemed to think so as well so I'm not so bias as you might think.
As we discussed the fact that we have the same, yet different, dreams she expressed her fear of comparison. She wants to be taken seriously as a writer and not as a kid who does as her mother does. Let me just take a moment here to address the fact that we as humans (especially women) spend FAR too much time living life in the land of comparison. Comparison only exists to steal joy. If you want to look at where someone is and use that as incentive to work harder? Fine. But do not look at others and lose sight of the blessings that you DO have in the process. Comparison is the work of the enemy and it does nothing to further the kingdom of God nor does it do anything to help your mind or heart.
But I digress...I pointed out to her that we have very different styles in writing. I can only write what I know and while I have many ideas for works of fiction, I lack the know-how for getting any of it written. She, however, has the education to do just that. It was about that time that she said, "Yeah you just write about how much your life sucks and then add something about God at the end." I'm not sure if that is exactly how she sees what I do or if she was trying to feel better or more confident in what she does. I don't really remember my exact response to that. I will say that my life doesn't suck but I do go through trials much like everyone else and I find that writing about those trials and how God gets me through them helps me and maybe they can help others too. I think that I tried to explain that to her. Maybe....
Life does get hard for us sometimes, doesn't it? I struggle with anxiety and sometimes depression. I have control issues. I doubt often that I'm a good enough wife and mother. The point is that we all do struggle in life at some time or another. But God says that, “in this life you will have trouble but take heart for I have conquered the world.” As for adding something about God, that is the point. I need the reminder and maybe someone else does too. That is why I do what I do.
I struggle with anxiety.... but God. Philippians 4:6 says: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests before God.
I struggle with worry...but God. Matthew 6:25-27 says: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?"
I feel like I’m not enough…but God. 1Peter 2:9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness and into his wonderful light.
I could go on and on about the struggles that we have as humans or maybe you don’t struggle at all. Maybe your life is full of sunshine and rainbows and you are perfection and quite possibly an alien from another planet because who doesn’t struggle in life from time to time. A pastor once said, you are either going into a storm, in storm, or coming out of one. I don’t know what your storm is, but I know that if you live on this planet if you aren’t in one now there will be one coming at some point. My God is bigger than all of it. So maybe I am the but God writer and maybe that’s ok. I hold no fancy degrees. I doubt if I did it would change anything anyway. I said I am only capable of writing what I know at least so far. But God…. I don’t know what his plans are for me. I’m not on the planning committee for what happens from here. When I try to plan it never works out. It is better if I am just a willing servant.
My daughter is full of ideas and has a passion for writing that I have no doubt will take her far once she hits her stride. Once she lets go of her fears and figures out the but God part. As I explained it to her, I realize that I cannot do anything apart from Him. I’m not smart enough, strong enough, or equipped enough but God….is.