Friday, May 1, 2015

Growing Pains

I've always been a dreamer - a dreamer with a huge imagination. In my heart of hearts, I always believed the dreams would come true. Because I lived in the misty world of imagination so much of the time, I didn't place enough emphasis on the practical side of dreams. I guess I just sort of thought if I did what I thought was my part - Shazam! - the dream would come true, especially if I prayed about it.

I recently described myself to a friend as a 4th of July Sparkler - a dazzling burst of light that quickly fades away to a little smoking stick. When the dream is birthed, I put my whole heart into it. However, if things don't go according to plan I quickly fizzle out. The fizzle is usually accompanied by a lot of whining and self-pity. Inevitably, the dream dies.

If you've read the little biography on my blog, you know I've written a book. Yes, an actual book - the dream I've been holding in my heart for years. I worked hard and prayed hard. I held it with open hands, or so I thought, and told the Lord to do with it as He willed. With the help of a very kind, talented friend I got it all spiffed up and ready to send off fully convinced the dream was about to come true.

Three rejections later, I was on the verge of fizzling. I confess, it's just like me. The stories of famous authors facing rejection after rejection didn't offer much comfort. The thought of writing another query letter and sending it off again made me want to go to bed and pull the covers over my head. Easier to believe the dream just wasn't meant to be.

I've been memorizing scripture as I walk in the morning. The other day it was Isaiah 41:10:

"Do not fear for I am with you. Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. 
  I will strengthen you. Surely I will help you. Surely I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."

I recited it as I walked, but I kept leaving out the middle phrase: "I will strengthen you." Then that still, small voice: "I'm here for you, but you must do your part, dear one."

The words went deep. I don't imagine they were a guarantee of a literary agent suddenly calling with an offer to represent my little book (Okay. I really did imagine things like that before the first rejection letter arrived.) I believe I'm on a journey. I don't know where it will end, but I'm going to try my best to run hard and not give up - not just for this dream but for all the dreams to come.


P.S. I know I said I would try to write more regularly, but I had a hard time writing this week because - that third rejection letter :) Still trying!