Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Rejection: Rooting Out the Lies and Replacing them with Truth

Gualberto107 from freedigitalphotos.net
My inspiration for this series is Charles Stanley's Emotions and a fabulous study of Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst, along with over 40,000 other women. Both of these resources have helped further cement the need for more of the "capital T" Truth in my life.
 Do you believe any lies in your writing life?

How do we inspect these lies and replace them with truth?

We need a thorough grounding in God's word  until the lies begin to lose their power.

Lysa TerKeurst says, "The more we operate in the truth of who we are and the reality that we were made for more, the closer to God we'll become."

You open up your inbox to find only deep disappointment. Perhaps (if you're lucky) its the "golden ticket" of rejection letters filled with helpful information to help grow your story. Maybe its a form letter. Or maybe you don't hear anything at all...and as the days, weeks, months go by...the kernel of hope inside you shrivels.

Perhaps for a moment, or a day or two...or maybe even longer...you forget about your True Source of Hope. You let the barrage of words drown out the One who is the Word whispering in your ear even in the midst of your doubts.

Have you bought into any of these lies?

Lie: I just wasted a whole bunch of time on this story, and its worthless.

TRUTH: Allen Arnold wrote a wonderful post for the Alley here about how writing is dancing with our father. It is never a waste.

Luke 19:11-27 the parable of the talents asks us what are we doing with the spiritual gifts he has given us. Even though writing isn't listed as a spiritual gift in the Bible it is a gift to be used for his purpose in the body. It would be wasteful not to be writing. God has put this desire in you.


Lie: Maybe I'm not meant to write.

TRUTH: Ashley posted this quote on facebook just today and it is worth repeating.

"The things you are PASSIONATE about are not random, they are your CALLING." -Fabienne Fredrickson

Do you love to write? There's your answer. I don't think you would be here if you didn't.

Lie: My writing isn't going anywhere. Its not influencing anyone.

TRUTH: Even if you think your writing has not affected anyone else, it has probably changed your own heart in ways you haven't even realized. God uses our ministry as a gift to minister to us what we most need: conviction, encouragement, sharpening, a sense of His love and hope.

Perhaps your writing is not meant to change and move the masses...right now. Perhaps not ever. Are you OK with that thought? God wants you to continue on with him as your guide. If he is calling you to write all you will gain on the journey will be well-worth it no matter what the outcome. Because you will grow closer to your Heavenly Father in the process.

Lie: Justifying the criticism in the rejection

TRUTH: We need to accept the areas where we need growth, even when it hurts. Almost all criticism has a valid component, so take from it the stone of wisdom to put in your pocket.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. -Philippians 3:12

This is one of my favorite Bible verses because it encourages me to press on in all that I do. Not because God needs our writing or anything else we can give. But because I want to be my best for him in all I do so it will be a witness to others of the hope that is within me.

Your acceptance of criticism and responding with a note of appreciation will help you grow. We need to surrender the areas of our writing that need growth instead of being prideful of what we have obtained so far and allowing ourselves to stagnate.

Take each comment and turn it into a practical application.

For instance, I need to grow in my grammar. I will study a high school grammar textbook weekly and apply what I've learned about sentence structure and punctuation.

Positive action steps might include: attending a conference, seeking out someone who is better than me in a particular area of writing (and isn't mentoring a benefit for all areas of life as well?) and humbling myself to ask for their help, reading a book on writing, or even putting aside the money for professional advice.

Lie: My worth lies in what someone else thinks.

TRUTH: People pleasing is a lie that can saturate us in many areas of our life. Because we have not let the truth infiltrate and overflow that God has made us for His own pleasure. We hear so much about the audience of One, but are we really only singing for him? Are we allowing his whispers to drown out in the possibility of other's applause?

Romans 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

If God is for you, how does that speak into all these lies?

If God loves you with a love that is shouted out through nature's beauty and whispered in our moments of despair, how can we allow any room for these tiny thorns of lies that spring up in our minds and hearts?



Are there any lies of rejection you've heard whispered from the enemy, in your writing life or any other aspect of life? Share any that I missed.

Do you have favorite scripture you meditate on to speak truth into your writing life?



Julia writes contemporary fiction to mirror truth. A former assistant librarian, she now channels her card cataloguing skills into homeschooling her elementary aged littles and writing for Library Journal. She has reviewed for a variety of websites for several years.





17 comments:

Joanne Sher said...

Oh Julia! This is so true, and SO needed by so many - myself included (and perhaps most of all). I will carry these truths in my heart all day (and if I don't, I'll be back for a refresher!l). Thank you

Jeanne Takenaka said...

Great post, Julia. It's essential as a writer that I weed out the lies and plant the truth in their place. Otherwise, I'll walk around defeated and discouraged, totally missing God's calling to me, and the blessings He wants to give me in the writing realm and in real life.

Thanks for this post.

Sherry Carter said...

Thank you, Julia, for directing me to God's Word to defeat the lies that threaten my confidence. God has called me to write and I need to fill my heart with His Truth.

Pepper said...

Beautiful post, Jules - and fabulous reminders. Scripture is our sword against those lies. Truth is sharper :-)

I just finished writing my post for next week about the long and weary road of waiting. The lie I think I fight against the most is 'I'll never write well enough to publish" and also the one you listed "I've waisted lots of time and nothing's going to happen with this stupid story."

But just like I tell my son who struggles with insecurities - sometimes you have to remind yourself of what you KNOW, not what you FEEL. Feelings are unpredictable and crazy things sometimes, and the knowledge of the Truth grounds us and wrestles those emotions into submission to what God says about us.

Thanks for sharing and encouraging!

Julia said...

Joanne,

So true that the word of God bears fruit in all these things. Hope God gives you the right word to hide in your heart for those times you need it (and we all do).

Jeanne,

Yes, I think sometimes the hard part is replacing continually.

Julia said...

Sherry,

So glad God is affirming your calling to write.

Pepper,

What a great thing for your son to learn early on. I still struggle with this one as a 36 year old and need to keep refreshing again and again.

Julia said...

Sherry,

So glad God is affirming your calling to write.

Pepper,

What a great thing for your son to learn early on. I still struggle with this one as a 36 year old and need to keep refreshing again and again.

Bluebelle said...

Thank you for this post! It means a great deal to me! I am a people pleaser in many ways, though I am fiercely protective of my writing, so remembering that it's my writing is important. I think I forget my Audience of One all too often. This reminder was wonderful, though!

Mary Vee said...

Julie,
A beautiful post filled with deep wisdom and powerful thoughts to ponder.
Thank you for the time you took to write this post.

Karen Schravemade said...

The last lie really hits home for me. I will be completely honest... I struggle often with feeling worthless and insignificant. Especially in this season of life at home with little kids when most of what I do goes unnoticed, a lot of it unappreciated. I've had no professional success and the things I pour myself into haven't borne any visible fruit, and are seen as frivolous and even pointless by my nearest and dearest because they don't bring any money into the household budget. It's easy to feel worthless in light of all that, and yet I do know theoretically that I can't base my worth on what I achieve (a hard pill to swallow for me, a typical over-achiever) or even on how others see me. A lesson I need to learn and re-learn. And one that I need to somehow translate from the theoretical to true heart-knowledge.

Jeanne Takenaka said...

Karen, I so appreciate your transparency. I struggle with some of that too. As a SAHM, who writes on a very part-time basis, progress is S-L-O-W. I see others pressing forward, gaining agents, contracts, and I feel like I'm still at the starting gate. I keep remembering God's plan for me is the perfect one FOR ME. I'm learning to lean into trusting His timing in all of this.

In the meantime, I'm praying for you today. Toddlers at home = lots of mommy energy expended. God cherishes you. And for the record, so much of what you've shared here has ministered to my heart. I am so eager to read a Karen Schravemade book one day. :)

Casey said...

Wow Julia. Just. Wow.
Did you write this and dedicate it to me? Because you might has well have.

Those first two are definitely things I've been dealing with but never really thought of them as "lies" before. I just thought of them as reality. The way it is.

Thank you for writing this post, because *I* needed to read it. Big time.

Ashley Clark said...

Julia, beautifully-said! Sometimes I find myself out of the routine of regular Bible study/reading, and holding on to what I know to be true... but somehow, the truth doesn't resonate as deeply when I'm not allowing God to speak to me in the present moment. I loved what you said about feeding ourselves with truth to combat the lies. It's like looking for manna-- if we try to use yesterday's, it's just not going to cut it. We always have to be open to what God is doing each moment.

Julia M. Reffner said...

Oh, Karen. I literally had tears coming to my eyes as I read your comment because I've been there girl. That is a lie, too. The enemy wants us to believe that what we're doing at home is worthless but there is so much purpose in a life dedicated to raising our children and giving up those dreams for a season. I wish I could give you a hug right now, because I've been there so many times.

CASEY,

Keep on using the gifts God has given you, friend. Don't grow weary (I'm preaching myself under conviction, too, be sure). God has good plans for you, you're even starting to see some of them unfold. Be encouraged :)

Amy Leigh Simpson said...

Jules, wow, this is so encouraging. Just what I needed today!

And Karen, I feel like I could have written your comment myself. Thank you for your boldness. I think a lot of us SAHM feel that way... espcially when we hinge our hopes on writing turning the tide in certain ways. What if we can stay home, do the mom thing, and bring home some bacon on the side doing something we love? Isn't that the dream, in a way? Having it all?

Love the post, the encouragment, and all the discussion here today!

Karen Schravemade said...

Jeanne, thank you!! You are such a dear, kind soul!

Julia and Amy, it helps so much to know you understand and I'm not alone in feeling this way. Love you, girls!

Angie said...

Wow, Julia, sorry I am so late in getting to this! This is such a beautifully written post, and a wonderful reminder to the impact lies can have on us in all areas of life.
I have thrown out a lot of lies about writing over this past year, and it is absolutely freeing and such a peaceful place to be!
A friend of mine wants me to read Made to Crave with her, and I have hesitated, but it seems to be coming up everywhere! Thanks for this post.