Why We Need To Keep Moving Forward with Passion
Our journeys through life are constant. Meaning, we're always moving. Sometimes our life plateaus a bit and we have an easy walk. Other times, we come to a steep hill or ominous foggy patch that shakes our confidence and makes us wonder if our break will ever be in sight. And wouldn't you know it--I'm in one of those foggy patches right now.
This post is a bit of motivation in the form of a life update. While I'm typing this to help motivate and encourage you, I'm also preaching to myself at the same time.
If you didn't know, I've written a novel. Yep. It's a completed 80,000 word inspirational fiction novel. I'm insanely proud of this novel. Did you know 97% of writers never finish their novels? 97%. So I'm proud to be in the 3% group of writers who finished what they started.
That being said, writing the novel is only the beginning. I spent over a year of my life writing this novel. I had to learn how to put together a solid plot line, how to get inside the heads of my characters, and how to draw a reader into my story without boring her to pieces. The work involved with this book was intense. Writing each chapter drained me emotionally but also gave me this deep feeling of purpose and satisfaction. But once I completed the novel, I had to dive into the competitive world of querying and publishing.
I like to believe I can touch the lives of many people with this novel. The story is built around loss and love and hope in a new day. My characters all face different hardships and go through the steep climbs and foggy patches of life. The story is meant to encourage and inspire the readers to hold fast to their faith and push through the hardships because with every new sunrise comes the opportunity to live a better life.
Convincing a literary agent and publishing company of this has proved to be rather difficult. Of the three percent of us writers who finished our novels, only one percent will actually be published through a publishing company. The odds are not in our favor. (Thank you Hunger Games for forever imprinting that phrase in my brain.) The odds make the publishing world a high competition environment. And these days, with email and internet based avenues of pitching an idea, your manuscript can get lost in the great cyber abyss. Rejection is ten times more common than acceptance. I know because I've yet to get more than "Your writing has merit, but it is not what we're looking for at this time" from the agents I send my book to.
Just typing this makes me ponder giving up, backing out of the foggy patch of unknowns, and moving on with my life.
But I'm not going to. I'm going to keep moving forward through the fog of unknowns. Do you know why?
Because I have worked too hard and too long on this novel. I've poured my heart and my soul into each and every word of my manuscript. I've cried. I've laughed. I've fallen asleep on my keyboard because the emotional toll of bleeding out my heart through ink on paper exhausts me. I've also felt the greatest high from hitting the save button and seeing the 80,000 word count on the bottom of the screen. Typing the last sentence of my novel set in stone my purpose for this world. This is my passion and my book will be on the shelf at Barnes & Noble one day.
Do you have a passion like this in your life?
Webster's Dictionary defines passion as a "strong and barely controllable emotion". Passion is something we can't wait to share with the world. Passion is something wired into our DNA that we can't shake no matter how hard we try. Passion is what drives athletes who suffer body altering injuries to find a way around the setback and continue to thrive in their chosen sport anyway. Passion is what helps us get out of bed each morning. Passion is what drove Jesus Christ to the cross to die for us.
God gave us our passions for a purpose. He created each and every one of us with special gifts and talents, not for us to squander them away and be fearful to share them. He wants us to shout our passions from the rooftop and use them to bring Him glory and to encourage each other.
My life's journey is not just about getting to the end in one piece. My journey is about living out my passions day in and day out. It's about encouraging and lifting others up along the way. And so is yours.
If you're going through a foggy patch right now and can't see the end of the road, take my hand. We'll walk through it together. But don't--I beg you--don't give up. God never said our passions would be easy, but He did promise they would be possible.
And God is able to make all grace abound to you,
so that always having all sufficiency in everything,
you may have an abundance for every good deed.
2 Corinthians 9:8
We need to keep moving forward so we can share our passions with the world. Our passions are what help other people overcome hardships and cling to their own passions. Just like Christ's passion made it possible for us to live, so we ought to use our passions to encourage others and point to God.
What are your passions? Share them with me in the comments and let's go after them together.