I sat at a long table and felt like crawling under it as the instructor spoke. I had just realized I was committing what he called the "number one sin of inexperienced freelance writers." I was writing a lot of articles, some of which I thought were good pieces, then I'd go looking for someone to agree with me and put it all in print. I still have a number of those manuscripts sitting in my ‘Unpublished’ file.
“Write to the market." the instructor suggested. "Find out what’s hot and go for it.”
This was a new concept for me and it changed the pattern of my career as a freelance writer. The experience is common among new writers, and it follows the path of a common flaw in our human character. We are so self-centred we want to be self-directed.
How many times have you finished a manuscript and prayed, “Okay God, I’ve written this really great (article, novel, short story). Now do your thing.”
In the book, Experiencing God, by Henry Blackaby and Claude King, the authors write, “God invites you to become involved with Him in His work” (p.50). Notice the emphasis? God invites us. We don’t invite Him. The work is His, not ours.
But how often do we stop to pray before we start tapping away on the keyboard? Too often we haven’t tried to discern what God wants. Too often we have not taken the time to look at God’s agenda before drawing up our own.
But all of what we write should be directed by God and fit within His plan for His kingdom. No matter if it’s a personal journal entry or a letter, a feature for a national newspaper, or a book manuscript sent to the number one publishing house in the country, it should be a building block tied to what God is doing in us, in our communities, in our countries.
How do we discover that? By developing our personal relationship with Him and then keeping our eyes and ears open to see and hear Him. He is here, actively building His kingdom around us. He has invited us to join Him by being His scribes in the world.
So let's write for Christ. Find out what's "hot" to Him and go for it.
Then we can pray with the psalmist - “May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us, yes, establish the work of our hands.” Psalm 90:17
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