Today I was back to being distracted and doing the avoidance thing in the morning. In an attempt to get myself going, I pulled a couple of old journals off my shelf, wondering if the earlier me might have advice for the later me. Did I really feel this negatively, and flat and blank about the other books I’ve written when I’ve been at this stage with them?
Anyway, I picked one that began in February 2005 during the time I was working on a second draft of Shadow Over Kiriath. I opened the book and on the very first page — the frontispiece — I’d written the following:
“The Lord has told me, again and again to trust Him aggressively and to wait for His solutions with CONFIDENT EXPECTATION.
To trust Him to guide and to trust Him to come through — that I won’t be ashamed, nor will my enemies exult over me or ridicule me…
…the blankness and the deadness are good things — they call to mind the lesson of stepping back and letting
God reveal things in His PERFECT timing
and let God Gather together the waters so that the dry land appears.
Sit back, relax, give God time to work in your life. Don’t enter into struggle, condemnation and bondage trying to change yourself. Most Believers have a hard time realizing/accepting that God does not hurry in His development of the Christian life.”
Nor does He necessarily hurry in His development of a book. In fact, as I considered today, I realized that releasing it slowly, releasing things at a very rudimentary, incomplete level, when the story doesn’t seem very good, is definitely a lesson in trusting Him. If it came out great the first time through, there’d be no need to trust and I would unquestionably develop a fat head. Instead, if it comes out ragged, full of holes, wandering around, limpid characters having lengthy discussions about inconsequential matters — all words I need to tell myself the story, even if they aren’t words that will survive to the final draft — it forces me to trust Him. It forces me to have patience, not seeing, and to trust that He will indeed make all things, even this, beautiful in its time.
And having learned that, somehow, in fits and starts, I worked my way through the rest of chapter 1 to page 21.