This week I received an email from such a writer. She feels guilty that she’s putting so much energy into a “hobby that seems so self-serving”.
I disagreed. For me, writing Christian fiction has always been about ministering to people. Kept in balance, that’s neither a hobby or self-serving.
In many ways the writing journey parallels a foreign missionary’s training.
A missionary can spend years at Bible college and in language training, much like the years we spend learning the craft of writing.
Then they often have to spend time working other jobs while they raise support, while writers save up to attend a writing conference to meet with editors and agents.
Missionaries, who settle in a tribal village, may have to continue their language training for years, before they’re fluent enough to begin Bible teaching. I know I wrote many manuscripts before I grasped the essential elements of a good story.
Meanwhile these missionaries teach by example. The villagers pay close attention to how they respond to various situations.
Ever think about what you’re teaching those around you by how you respond to those rejection letters?
Along the way, these missionaries grow in their own faith. Learning the lessons they need to learn before they are ready to teach others.
Sound familiar in your own writing journey?
They often have to come to the end of themselves, too. Life in a primitive village is hard. Way too hard, when the fruit of their labor seems so far off. If it were up to them alone, they would have quit long ago. But they aren’t alone. God walks along side them, equipping them for each step.
He does the same for each one of us.
Moreover, seeing the fruit of missionaries who have stuck it out encourages newer ones to persevere. And that fruit may come in ways you don’t expect long before, or if ever, your words published.
Your Turn: If you knew your stories would only touch one other life, would you still write?
Critical Condition, described by Romantic Times Magazine as a “wonderful tribute to spouses struggling with a loved one’s illness," is the third book in her Undercover Cops series from LIS.