*Warning: brutal, vulnerable honesty ahead.*
I am a horrible person.
Okay, maybe that's dramatic but it's how I feel sometimes. Here's the thing, I want to be holy and humble and like Jesus but I fail, especially when it comes to writing.
I would have never thought that the green-eyed monster lived in my own heart until I became a writer. (For the record it still feels weird to call myself a writer or author or to talk about my writing because I feel like it's prideful. But my battle for humility will have to wait for another time.)
Jealousy. It's an ugly word. I don't like the way it feels. I don't want to wear it, but often it shows up like a devil on my shoulder. More accurately it's a snake slithering around my thoughts, constricting my spirit until it suffocates my dreams.
* A fellow writer has a higher Amazon ranking and I get jealous.
* A friend seems to be getting more attention for their book and I get jealous.
* A person I love is getting favor on their work and I get jealous.
I could be more specific. I could give you more examples but I think you get the point.
See, I told you I was horrible.
Please know, I want my friends, authors or not, to be successful in their endeavors. I truly am happy for them when good things happen in their careers. But I'm also afraid those things won't happen in mine.
That's the root of jealousy...fear. It's not that I don't want them to succeed. I am simply afraid I will fail. That fear wraps around me and it gets hard to breathe. My soul aches as it fights for another gasp of air. I panic. I try to think of all the things I'm doing wrong or not doing. I scramble to solve a problem I can't even name. In the middle of it the joy and passion I have for this God-given dream of writing wanes.
"Stop viewing other writers as a threat to your career. You are your only adversary." - J.A. Patterson
I know the answer to my fear and jealousy. I know that trusting God is the key. It's hard.
See, writing for me is part of my purpose. I know it. Since I realized that I had stories to tell and that God could use those stories I can't stop writing. It's one way I #LiveChosen. But knowing your purpose and living for your purpose are not without trials.
This new adventure has pulled back a layer and revealed something there I don't like. It's something God doesn't like. But He loves me.
I believe God wants me to write stories. But I know he cares more about who I am than what I do. So in the midst of my obedience to step out in this publishing world, the Maker is maturing me further, so I can do more in His world.
It's painful at times. It makes me want to give up. I won't.
Instead I will remind myself to trust His plans for me. Yes, I have to remind myself. When you can't see all the steps to the plan, or the timeline, or even the finish line you will need reminding too. That's okay. God doesn't mind because He understands. He is patient with me, probably more patient than I am with myself. I am still learning to be patient with Him.