I’ll never forget the Sunday I was getting ready to leave church, and the pastor’s wife came up to me and touched my arm.
“Karen, my son can’t find a job, so he’s decided to make some fast money by writing a book and having it published. Do you have any counsel for him?”
I’m so proud of myself that I didn’t guffaw in her face. Not so proud that I fixed her with a hard look and replied, “Do me a favor. Don’t ever say anything so stupid to me again.”
Yeah, those spiritual gifts tests. The category I always lack is mercy.
Anyone who has ever gotten involved in this gig knows that writing and being published isn’t the way to make “fast” money. Or, for far too many, any money.
Okay, reality check. Walk into any large bookstore and take a look at all the books. Now, how many of those multitudes of authors do you think are making a living at writing? Brace yourselves. One percent. Yup, one percent! In fact, with all the things authors need to do to find a readership (marketing/promotions, writers’ conferences, reference books, and so on), and the costs for indie publishing (in addition to what traditional authors have to pay for, they have the expense of covers, copyrights, editing, and more) many end up spending far more money than they earn. So is it any wonder several authors responded to my initial blog on obstacles by saying money is a big one? Or the lack thereof.
Yes, there are financial realities to this whole thing. But let me ask you something: What if money isn’t an obstacle at all? I mean, God could, if it was the best thing for you, rain money down on you! So what if the real obstacle is a lack of trust? The feeling that if you don’t do all the things you’re told you need to do, things won’t happen the way they should? That you’re in this on your own, and if you have to put yourself in debt to do it, well, you’re doing it for God, right?
No. You can’t honor God by doing things He says not to do, like going into debt. But here’s what you can do:
- First, realize your task is to write. Make sure you’re doing that. Just get your seat in the chair and write.
- Then, when a seeming financial need arises, submit it to God’s approval and guidance.
- Ask trusted friends and family to pray about the issue, that God will make it clear what He is asking you to do. If God, and your advisors, don’t give you the amen, then let it go. And move on in the freedom that God’s in control of your writing.
- Know, in your heart of hearts, that you serve a God who WILL provide what He knows you need. And if that’s money, you can rest in His promises. Promises like those below. Promises to put an end to Writer’s Obstacle #9: Money Concerns–
Deut 28: 8, 12— “The Lord will guarantee a blessing on everything you do and will fill your storehouses with grain. The Lord your God will bless you in the land he is giving you…The Lord will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them.
Psalm 34: 3-5, 6-10– …let all who are helpless take heart. Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt his name together. I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces…Taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him! Fear the Lord, you his godly people, for those who fear him will have all they need. Even strong young lions sometimes go hungry, but those who trust in the Lord will lack no good thing.
2 Corinthians 9:10– For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.
Philippians 4:19-20– And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Now all glory to God our Father forever and ever! Amen.