I have been fighting a huge battle my entire life. This battle started when I was about five and continued until very recently. I wouldn’t say I’ve conquered this fight, but God is now fighting for me and helping me chip away. Satan fed me so many lies that prevented me from even trying to fight at times. I wasn’t good enough. I couldn’t read well enough. I wasn’t a good public speaker. I wouldn’t make any money. I can’t. God started planting a seed deep inside at an early age that took root and formed a strong foundation for me to become a writer and Satan has been battling me ever since. For every success there is a lie Satan has ready. I’m a bit wiser now and I laugh at those lies and often choose to ignore them.
Here’s a tiny glimpse of how fighting being a writer has worked out for me.
Age 5: I was so proud to write my first sentences and ran to show my daddy. He said, “That’s good, but you didn’t put spaces between the words so you can’t read it.” He was trying to teach me, as dad’s often do, but I was crushed. I’ve always had a fight inside so I went back and practiced until I had the spacing issue perfected.
5th Grade: The beginning of the year I set my heart on writing a story that would win the talent show that I knew would be toward the end of the school year. The entire time I worked on it I believed the lie that I couldn’t possibly share the story because I didn’t know enough and writing wasn’t really a talent because it’s not like singing and dancing. Yeah, I closed that dream and longingly watched the other performers capture the audience.
8th Grade: I took Journalism as one of my elective classes and my teacher offered me the position of editor-in-chief. I felt so inadequate, but my confidence grew because she believed in me and I had an amazing time! Thank you Mrs. Vibbert.
12th Grade: Senior year arrived and I had all the credits for my core classes, so I opted for easy classes. My schedule for the year was comprised of five English classes (thanks for putting up with such a close-minded student Mrs. Nichols), a student aide position and two FFA-related courses. Yup, I opted for an easy year, but it was a great year! I thoroughly enjoyed all my English classes and FFA set my career path, although I wouldn’t come to realize this for another year. Thanks Mr. Henry and Ms. Engle.
College Freshman: I was still on a path to prove I could do anything and I was smart, so I enrolled as a chemical engineering student at Michigan Tech, which only increased my tuition bill since I broke so many beakers and flasks. I wrote pretty reports and one of the engineering professors was confused by my question about formatting specifications for the final report. Remember the FFA course I took to fill time my senior year? We won a state competition in, of all things, communication and I found myself on a plane with a week off from college to compete at the National FFA Convention. I returned to college after that week and realized it was time to change my major to communication. I enjoyed technical information and the nitty gritty details and knew deep down that this was the right path for me. About 90% of degrees included the term “science” or “technology” since I was at a technical college, so I chose scientific and technical communication. I wasn’t sure about it at first because the classes were easy – funny how things may seem easy when you thoroughly enjoy them!
After all that you’d think I would have finally realized my true calling to become a writer. Far from true! I still wasn’t a confident writer when I landed my first job as a project manager and proposal writer. I could handle technical writing, but absolutely knew I would NOT be a creative writer. Again, it’s funny how I now love adding creativity into my writing and still pull from the technical, detailed side.
So thankful that God is in the business of repeating things to me. I connect so many dots and life becomes so much clearer when I write. I’ve surrendered my fears and am allowing God to work through me as a writer. Nothing could be more fulfilling for my soul. It completes me and connects me. My family often provides the content ideas, bless them and it does pay the bills. Are you fighting your calling?