by Natalie Monk
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Ephesians 6:12
Haters gonna hate. And Satan is a hater. He hates your writing style, your blog, your book, your agent, your publisher, your librarian, your favorite football team… With Satan, it’s not business, it’s personal.
Here’s an action plan I created this month when I felt Satan was attacking my fiction. I hope this defense strategy inspires you in your own times of need.
There are general areas Satan likes to attack when you’re writing fiction–like, for example…your whole life. Seriously though, these are the targets I wrote down:
Relationships. Maybe it’s just me, but the emotional fallout of real-life relationship issues can suck the life out of my motivation to write. Family, business, community, and church relationships must be considered as we pray God’s protection on our writing.
Finances. Nothing demobilizes writing like unexpected expenses. Think about it. ER visits, vehicle repairs, technological casualties, etc. can force us to find extra funds. Overtime, part-time jobs, selling handcrafts or what have you, all eat writing time for lunch.
Schedule. Errrybody got 24 hours in a day. Satan wants yours. Ask God to protect your writing time and help you focus.
Spiritual Self-care. Satan’s best bet to derail meaningful fiction is to cut off communication with Headquarters. Your Creator loves spending time with you. Ask Him to protect your devotional time and prayer appointments.
Testimony. Last year I witnessed two unrelated instances of people engaging in Facebook spats–people in the Christian writing industry. Each party’s argument was interesting, but the inappropriate tone and cheap shots volleyed from both sides deterred me from purchasing their associated writing. In our culture it’s easy to lose one’s integrity, and I for one desperately need God’s help as I represent Him.
Discouragement. Satan can use others’ actions, intentional or not, to strip our enthusiasm. I’ll never forget the well-meaning lady who said, “Congratulations on the book contract! Though, I’ll probably never read it. I always feel fiction is a waste of time.” I chuckled my thanks, knowing the dear hadn’t deliberately called my life’s work for the last eight years worthless. Despite the inherent comedy, it took me a few days to get beyond the discouragement and feel like writing again. Ask God to encourage you and protect you from undue discouragement.
Writing Craft, Inspiration, Industry Contacts, Your Heath, Your Readers, etc. This list could go on and on. Make it unique to you. Take time to know your writing weaknesses and ask God to help you improve. Pray He’ll put you in contact with the right people. Pray for that coveted wind of inspiration to breeze your way.
Seem like a lot of work? Remember, Satan works nonstop to take down Truth. Before or during your next project, schedule time to spread these items before the Lord and invite Him to fight for you. He loves you, created you for the task He’s given you, and wants you to succeed. What’s more, He can ensure that success. The number one requirement for having Divine power on your fiction is a desperate desire for God to give it. All we’ve left to do is ask.
Natalie Monk is a preacher’s daughter from North Mississippi. She loves porch swings, old movies, and meeting readers through her website: www.nataliemonk.com. Her debut novella, For Richer or Poorer, will release in the Of Rags and Riches Romance Collection on July 1, 2017.