Okay, time to come clean guys.
I knew that I had been posting way less than I wanted to on this beloved blog, but I had no idea that it had practically been an ENTIRE month since the last time I wrote here. The truth is, my creative juices have been being used elsewhere.
I’ve been keeping this on the down-low for a little over half a year now because I’m afraid of failure, not following through, disappointing people, and disappointing myself.
Around August of last year, the Lord laid a passion on my heart to write a book. He had given me an idea that I was so excited to run with. I started off strong – writing tons each week and pouring so much energy into the book. I became overwhelmed, though, and slowly began to spend less and less time working on that project.
Then, during a church service one Sunday morning, my pastor mentioned that John Grisham (an amazing and successful author) completed his first book by writing one page each day. He couldn’t commit to more than that at the time, but he knew he wanted to be a writer, so he wrote one single page each day. I’m sure there was a deeper, more spiritual meaning behind sharing that story, but that is the only part of the sermon I can recall (oops).
From that moment forward, I began to write one page of my book each day. It took about 10-15 minutes (maybe 30 if I was feeling super inspired and wanted to write a little more) and it was working. I had built up 85 pages of work on my faithful laptop. I was picking up speed, dreaming of the day that I could edit the pages I had poured my heart into for what seemed like forever.
Then one day, it was gone.
I went to pull up the manuscript I had worked tirelessly creating and could not find it.
I searched every folder, every file, every download and it was nowhere to be found. I checked my trash can and deleted items (which is hilarious considering I never delete anything on my laptop and would absolutely never delete 85 PAGES OF MY FIRST EVER MANUSCRIPT), but had no luck. It was nowhere. I was devastated.
Actually, I was in denial. “Oh, haha good one, God – now where is it at for real?” This denial continued the next day as I searched for the file. I prayed that it would turn up again. Driving in my car on the way to work one day during this denial period, I remember praying for it to show up and feeling this soft voice in my soul whisper, “Caitlyn, what if it is gone? What will you do? Will you give up? Or will you write it all over again?” I spoke aloud without even thinking, “I will do it again. I will write again because this is a dream and a calling that the Lord has given me that I cannot ignore. I will write it again if it never turns up.” In that moment, I knew that the file would not turn up. I knew that God wanted me to walk through this writing process again to stretch me in a whole new way. Finally, after a few days, the reality of what I had lost began to sink in and I began to move forward.
After so much prayer and surrender, God has shifted the idea for the book slightly and is allowing me to see a different perspective that He would like me to capture – which is something I would have never even considered if the file had been found. I also feel His reassurance that it’s okay to share this dream with you all. It may take years to get a final manuscript down, but I am excited to share this passion in my heart with all who read here.
Sometimes this world is going to knock you down. Sometimes life is going to throw you a huge curveball or setback that will feel like a roadblock between you and who God is calling you to be. The devil is waiting around every corner to attack those who are chasing after God with their whole heart – beware of him, sweet friend, and be so ever aware of God’s mighty presence walking with you around each of those corners as well.
I encourage you to get back up when you are knocked down. If you have failed yourself or have been failed by others, I encourage you to get up and try again. Get up anyways and fix your eyes on Jesus – the author of this life you and I get to live. He sees things far beyond our comprehension. His definition of “good” is not just rooted in a good feeling, but in bringing good glory to His Heavenly Kingdom. Sometimes His good doesn’t feel good, but we have to trust that His ways are higher than our own.
“‘My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,’ says the Lord. ‘And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.'”
Take the Lord’s hand and get back up again, friend. He is with you and for you.
Here’s a lil’ video if you’re interested: