In the ancient days, back when concrete swimming pools were newly invented and high diving boards provided the latest adrenaline rush to thrill seekers . . .
Okay, maybe not that long ago, but pretty close. I was nine. Swimming pools had been around for a while.
So, picture it: Scrawny, freckled redhead, mostly elbows, knees, and impulsiveness, climbs the steps of the highest diving board at the pool–an Olympic sized pool, with an Olympic regulation diving board. My mind is made up. All my friends have jumped off this board, and they’re down below, squinting into the sun at me as I force my feet up another step. Others who want to take the dive are climbing behind me, so I don’t dare stop. One more step. One more step.
Don’t look down.
I feel triumphant as I hit the top. I survey the terrain around me. It’s beautiful! And for a moment, I’m the world’s princess.
Until someone complains behind me: “Hey! You gonna jump, or what?!”
The board is wider than it appears from the poolside, so walking it isn’t nearly as frightening as I’d thought it would be. But going to the edge . . . looking over the edge . . . at that tee-tiny pool below, that I’m supposed to jump into . . . gulp!
I couldn’t do it.
The groans, growls, and outright cussin’ that went on while everyone climbed back down the steps so Chicken Little can go run to her mommy are still vaguely lodged in my memory.
Fear can stop you from experiencing a wide variety of thrills. It can paralyze you from being daring. It can glue your feet to the ground and leave you at a standstill. It can force you to back up, to retreat.
And it can stop you from writing what God wants you to write.
Writers face a wide variety of fears: What if I can’t do this? What if I’m not good enough? What if my story isn’t good enough? What if God didn’t really call me for this? What if everyone hates it?
Lesson #1: Recognize where those doubts and fears come from. Whether God called you to write, or you dedicate everything you write to Him, He’s going to bless it, so the idea the doubts and fears come from Him can quickly be ruled out. Whenever we’re doing something for His glory, He’s interested and engaged. It’s not likely to be Him asking us to climb back down the steps.
Lesson #2: Whether God called you to write, or you dedicate everything you write to Him, He’s going to bless it. Whenever we’re doing something for His glory, He’s interested and engaged. It is He who is first in line to be our help if we only accept the offer.
So, what are you afraid of? Give your fear to Him and dive in.