Have We Slept Through a Harvest?

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Deadlines, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW, writing 10 Comments

by Terri Gillespie

Have we slept through a harvest?

He who gathers crops in summer is a wise son, but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son. Proverbs 10:5, TLV

Crops and harvests. Commitments. Follow-through. Seeing a writing project through to completion. Sowing into our craft and reaping success in publishing.

When we live these guidelines we are generally successful. However, if we struggle with these areas we tend to struggle with having successes in publishing.

As writers, we know that sometimes a writing crop can take a long time to harvest. I truly believe that a God-inspired story will find its place in God’s time. However He chooses to utilize it—in whatever format He chooses. How do we rest in that?

Sometimes our writing and publishing goals—even with a great deal of prayer and planning and hard work—seem to go awry. The project takes a turn that is unexpected and confusing. There is no harvest. Did we sleep through it?

When that happens we can feel like a failure. Feel we’ve let our Heavenly Father down. We just weren’t good enough to see the project through to harvest. We may even question our calling as writers.

What if? What if that’s not true? What if that’s not what happened? What if something else is at work? Something amazing?

What if that writing project was our Father’s means to a different end than what we imagined?

What if He needs to show us something important, a harvest we cannot seem to fathom on our own and He is using this crop to get us to the place where He can speak to us?

What if He needs to begin with what we know, so that He can take us to a new vista of understanding we couldn’t comprehend before?

What do I mean by this?

Sometimes we are inspired to write certain stories. We sense the presence of God even as we write. The manuscript finished, we felt agents and editors would sense what we sensed, yet the publishing heavens had turned to brass.

Where do we go from here? Give up?

If you have experienced a similar circumstance in the past and when you think about it the pain is still there, ask our Father to show you if there was a crop you didn’t even know was there. A crop that wasn’t necessarily about publishing, but it was just as important—just as fruitful.

It’s those confusing, painful memories that I’m talking about. Those thorns that still prick us. This generally means that tender area need His attention.

When a well-prayed, well-thought out project never comes to “harvest,” know that sometimes our Father had a different crop for us to gather.

Look at the “failure” and ask the Holy Spirit to show us if we actually failed, or if there was a different crop to “harvest.” See what Father shows us. And then harvest that new crop.

We might be blessed in ways we never thought possible. And that would be a good harvest indeed.

May we gather the crops our Father intends, my friends.

Have we slept through a “harvest?” @TerriGMavens #ACFWBlogs #writing #writingtip #pubtip Click To Tweet

Terri Gillespie: author of Making Eye Contact with God—A Women’s Devotional, She Does Good Hair (2013 LYRA Best Women’s Fiction) and CUT IT OUT! (2014). She was a managing editor of the Tree of Life Version of the Holy Scriptures (Baker Publishing). Member of ACFW AWSA, CAN.





Comments 10

  1. Great wisdom, Terri! It sometimes the writing journey is a long winding road. But there are many great lessons to learn in the process. I’m glad you shared these inspiring ideas with us!

  2. Terri, I love this article and thought many times,”when Lord!” I’ve been in the process of writing a book for years, with the help of those who have offered to assist me, but to no avail. It can be exhausting, and feeling like maybe I’m not to do this, but God stepped in and gave me a dream. So, I’m learning to trust as I press forward to envisioning my “Harvest” to come to pass in His glorious time!! Thank you, for sharing your heart seasoned with wisdom.?

  3. If this is my harvest, I have to say
    that God is really, really weird.
    I would not have foreseen a way
    in which this mandate has appeared.
    I always thought that poets were
    hairy dudes in upscale bars
    who lived in garrets with no care
    for normal things, like jobs and cars.
    But now I find, to my surprise
    that I’m writing Bard-like sonnets
    that, to my astonished eyes
    is akin to wearing Amish bonnets.
    As cancer defines my final years
    is God having a joke, to spare the tears?

  4. Oh, Andrew. Our resident Bard wears no bonnets, but brings joy and levity to so many. We’re glad that God was “weird” to bring a crop such as yours. And we pray that you’ll be around a long time bringing a knowing smile to all of us.

  5. A profoundly wise post! Thank you, Terri! One of my writing mentors told me that writing a novel was more about the harvest God wanted to reap in my soul than about anything else. I have learned that she was right.

  6. The publishing heavens that you spoke of do not, should not, have the final say. Though the learning curve can be steep, a writer can find ways to self-publish. This may be how God answers your prayer. It could be the adventure He wanted for you all along.

  7. Nancy, thanks for your comments. Absolutely that can be the harvest God had intended all along! As a self-publisher of two of my books, I have seen that harvest. 😉

    Thanks for the read!

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