October 10, 2014
Confessions of a Procrastinator by Sharon Espeseth
The more I planned for this, the more blocked I became. Like the centipede who really thought about how he walked and couldn't get his legs to work together, I stumbled in my writing. Here it is the night before my post is due and I'm trying to pull together a random disarray of thoughts on the subject of fear and how it affects my writing. Thoughts have been rolling around in my head like marbles for the past ten days. A few of these marbles rolled down my arm, through my pen, and even landed rather wobbly on paper.
Over-thinking the whole process of writing and the fears that are common to writers, I now am starting over. What I'd written before just didn't seem to "measure up." First, I must pray. That is always a legitimate pause, not a procrastination.
I have files on fear, quotations from the Bible on cards and also from the wisdom of scholars and the secular world on the subject of fear. I have personal stories of fears I've faced and how God helped restore my courage in certain circumstances. I've heard or read that "Be not afraid" is one of the most quoted verses of the New Testament.
"Why, then, should I be afraid when I write?" I ask in my prayer and I am reminded of a plaque my sister gave me when I was going to university. "In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength." (Isaiah 30:15b KJV) In The Message we read, "Your strength will come from settling down in complete dependence on me--the very thing you've been unwilling to do."
I've been busy, distracted, and wasteful of time. I need to be still and know that God is real. From that better writing will flow. From that peaceful place, I can work in faith. Working on this month's writing prompts, I wanted to see my thoughts all laid out from start to finish. Martin Luther King Jr. has said, "Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." That is what I'm doing now at my computer--feeling one step at a time.
God has promised to give us wisdom; all we have to do is ask. We don't have to be great and wise in ourselves. When Jesus walked the earth, he chose common people to get his message out, which made their work all the more remarkable. "When they (the people) saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus." (Acts 4:13 NIV) I would like people to notice that my writing isn't all about me, but that God is able to use me.
This Thanksgiving time, I want to thank you my fellow InScribers for the way we pray for one another, help one another, and encourage one another in our writing. The same can be said for our Barrhead group, the Women Word Weavers.