Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Minute(s) (as in time) (03/03/11)
TITLE: Heart Minutes
By Jody Day
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It only takes a minute to lose heart. I think I understand why people abandon their dreams, get old before their time, and wait to die or just wait for nothing. A moment comes when fatigue is the air they breathe, heartbreak and disappointment is the ground they walk on, and death becomes the dream.
There are those days when rejections come, chapters lag, the sentences just won’t gel and the temptation to lose heart takes up a few minutes. I have to admit I’ve thought about giving up. I have been so bone tired and discouraged sometimes that a quitting moment comes into my heart, sneaking in like a robber, stealing my dream.
Sometimes when I’m tired to the point of tears, I hear my heart whisper, “You aren’t doing anyone any good with your little stories and poems. Give it up,” he says. I take a minute to imagine what my life would be like if I were to give up. I don’t have to do all this, right? No one is making me spend all this time and energy writing, studying, researching, submitting, rewriting, resubmitting before I go to work in the morning. I love the process, actually, but I wish that was all I had to do. The thought of not doing it is painful, but a darn sight easier.
If I spend too many minutes thinking that way, my dream dissolves a few more inches. The thought is fleeting at first, but I don’t realize that if unchecked, I am giving up by inches. What can save me from having my dreams stolen away from me? Not losing heart. We are admonished to guard our heart for it is “the well-spring of life” (Proverbs 4:23).
“Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” (Matt. 6:45) What is the “abundance” of my heart? What is in it that makes me entertain giving up? Doubt and fear, discouragement and exhaustion? The Word also says, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7)
I must be pouring into my heart, every minute, the assurance of my calling. If I fill my heart with encouragement from the Word of God, making it full and abundantly overflowing with Him, then when those quitting minutes come, what comes out of my heart and mouth will overcome.
When my heart is abundant with the Holy Spirit and the confidence that I am in His will, I can grab that quitting minute by the throat and get right up into it’s face. “Look, you. Yep, I’m tired. Maybe I need some vitamins, a change of diet, a little more exercise or something. But I am called to write. And I will write. You can take your 60 seconds of lies and get on out of here!”
My goal as a writer is to inspire and influence people for Christ. I have found a way to fulfill the calling to write that chases away discouragement and is immediately useful. I write a soldier and thank him or her. It only takes a minute to get signed up at SoldiersAngels.org. I receive one name per week (although it is possible to receive more) and write a letter of thanks. I include a little about myself and my family, the area where I live, and anything else that might interest the hero. What better use of minutes for a writer?
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