My Ink Dance

Discovering Extraordinary Grace in an Ordinary Life

Why I’m Still Writing

The last few months have brought me face to face with a question that I’m still not sure I’ve fully answered. With every tap of a key or note jotted down I keep asking myself, why?

I’m the girl who quits things. No, seriously. I am.

Piano–quit.

Violin–quit.

French Horn–quit.

And before you think it’s just music…well, the list shifted as I got older.

High School–quit (kind of, but not really. I left early.)

College–didn’t quit, but transferred, twice.

Retail pharmacy job–quit (after only 2 hours!)

Waitressing–quit (made it one shift as trainee)

Teaching–I hesitate to say quit here because I decided to stay home with my kids. But I didn’t stay. And I haven’t gone back ten years later (for a host of reasons)

Don’t even make me list diets. We’d be here for days.

And then there’s this thing called writing. This seed of a dream that started in the days of elementary poems and the rubber cement used to make hard-cover books. I still remember my favorite poem.

Carousel

Carousel, carousel go round and round.

See every one go up and down.

Look at them all laughing so merrily.

Look at them all wave to mommy and daddy.

I wish I could be there on that carousel.

Elementary, yes. But I put my heart on the page for anyone who cared to see it. Today I find myself struggling to do the same. But elementary poems will only go so far.

Now, I’m torn between blogging and books, warring between the purity of the art and marketing, struggling with following the experts advice and bleeding true on the page. I feel lost more days than not, trying to walk down unfamiliar paths, and I worry I’ll never get anywhere with all the circling I’ve done.

And then there’s the judgement. From me, from others, it really doesn’t matter. The voice that whispers, why are you wasting your time? Go get a real job. And I can only hope to drown that voice in the sound of hitting the keys.

I feel lost more days than not, trying to walk down unfamiliar paths, and I worry I'll never get anywhere with all the circling I've done. Click To Tweet

Yet, I can’t bring myself to stop. To say no more. To close the computer and set down the pen. The desire is too great, and that scares this quitter-girl. Quitting is what I know. It feels easy and familiar and safe. But it also feels like the first step on a path to regret and unbelief.

Regret in what I would never do, but scarier still, unbelief in God’s design of who I am. God made us to do things, created us to be and think and dream and become. His plans for each of us are different and unique, but that doesn’t make them any less valid.

When I think about why I’m still writing I’ve realized it’s about trust. Trusting that God gave me this desire for a reason, even if I don’t know what it is. And walking it out on trembling knees and uncertain paths because I believe in who God made me to be.

What uncertain thing do you need to do today to believe in who God made you to be?


Sharing words at #raralinkup and with these great writers today!

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About Becky Hastings

I am emotional and logical. I am strong and dependent. I am a juxtaposition of head and heart exploring it all through writing. And in all my mixed-up ways I am loved. I’m here to tell you that you are, too. Just the way you are.

34 Replies

  1. Thank you, Becky, for sharing this journey of perseverance. Sometimes it’s a simple as doing the next thing, writing the next word on the page, and then trusting God to bring it to the eyes that need to see it.

    1. Becky Hastings

      So true, Michele. Sometimes I need to remind myself that even if the words are for God and no one else, that is enough!

  2. You write so beautifully…I can see why you never quit writing. God’s gift is in this, and it is what you are meant to do. I think this is one way we discover what our true purpose is in life…it is found in the one thing we feel most compelled to continue. Sometimes we don’t even know why we are pursuing onward, but even when we don’t know why, God continues to pour in inspiration, and that propels us to take one more step…then one more, etc. I am so thankful to meet you today…clicking over from the link-up. God bless you and yours with a Merry Christmas!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Cheryl, you are such a gifted encourager! I love how you worded it: “the one thing we feel most compelled to continue” So beautiful. Wonderful to meet you today, and Merry Christmas!

  3. Yay for you, Becky. 🙂 So glad that voice in your spirit has said quitting’s not an option. I look forward to seeing what God does with your willingness, and your tenacity to stay the course. 🙂 Lovely post, thanks for sharing. 🙂 Merry Christmas!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Thank you so much Brenda! Merry Christmas to you too!

  4. Great writing Becky. It encourages me to keep going since I tend to be a quitter too. 😉 Writing is teaching me to persevere and overcome the doubts and fears that make me want to quit.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Keep persevering my friend! You matter and your voice matters 🙂

  5. You write because you cannot NOT write. 🙂 It’s become Who You Are as compared to those other things that you quit–those where just What You Did. It’s going to be hard to quit Who You Are, especially when you know that you don’t want to.

    So now, how do you turn Who You Are into What You Do? I’d say: keep writing.

    Great post. 🙂

    1. Becky Hastings

      Thank you, Bradley. Quitting who we are could be a little tricky!

  6. Becky- you speak my heart girl. Thank you for not quitting today.

    1. Becky Hastings

      So glad my heart isn’t alone 🙂

  7. Girl- I know how you feel. The same doubts race through my mind …and I am a runner …so they chatter fast! Let’s just pray today for God to anoint our words. That His purpose in our love to write means more than our hesitation over the how and what. Prayers of encouragement to you, today! Happy Tuesday! #TestimonyTuesday
    Megs

    1. Becky Hastings

      You bring up an element that I so often leave out: God. Sure, I can write faith and all, but living it can be so much harder. So grateful for the reminder today!

  8. Oh, Becky! You spoke right to my heart here! You have encouraged me even as you speak of your own fear and discouragement. You pour out more than just words on a page. There are heart felt emotions that weave a deep connection through your words and bind you to your readers. Don’t quit!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Thank you Liz. The best we can do is come to the page full and leave empty, trusting that God will fill and use and make it all matter! So grateful you are here, and that our hearts are not alone 🙂

    1. Becky Hastings

      I feel like I couldn’t if I tried! 😉

  9. Ooooh, Becky. My heart. Girl you put into words what’s raw in my heart so often. This one was just perfectly timed by the Lord. Amen. I’m so with you in all of this, and I’m so stealing your conclusion for my own reminding: writing because I trust Him with the desire He’s given and the words He gives. Saving this post, friend. Keep trusting!!

    1. Becky Hastings

      I’m so grateful for kindred spirits across the words on the screen! God has so much in store, and we have no idea. It may not look like Famous Author So and So, but we are not all following the same call, right? Oh, what a journey this writing life is. So glad I can travel with friends 🙂

  10. Becky, after reading this, I looked at the “Meet Becky” section of your blog. I tend not to like a lot of bells and whistles on blogs; after the content, what draws me in the most is a blogger’s voice. Yours does just that … you write in a way that makes me feel as if we are having a conversation. And let me just say this: I think we could have quite a lengthy talk about everything you’ve written today! From one recovering quitter to another, please don’t stop writing! You are not wasting your time! 🙂

    1. Becky Hastings

      Lois, your words mean so very much to me! I honestly would love to sit on a couch, feet up, hot cocoa in hand and have that chat! So grateful to meet people in this online space that can look at one another, nod and say, “I get it, friend.” 🙂

  11. Lynette

    Becky, writing means so much to us that read it! Please keep writing, we need your insight! Thank you!
    Merry Christmas!🎄

    1. Becky Hastings

      Thank you so much! 🙂

  12. Becky, I loved this post. Maybe because I truly have no idea exactly the “why” behind my writing except that I feel compelled to do it – for my children and my grandchildren. May our words live on in the lives of others perhaps even doing an eternal work in their hearts. We may never know what our words accomplished but may we know we trusted Him to do what He alone could do with them. Perhaps our part is solely to be obedient to write what He puts on our hearts. May you and yours have a most blessed Christmas! I am always grateful to have read your words!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Yes! Maybe it is more about obedience and our relationship with God than anything else. Keep writing faithfully for Him friend. Praying you have a wonderful Christmas filled with His presence!

  13. You took the words right out of my mouth girl! I loved all of this. I have had a life of quitting to show for, and trying to silence the enemy that that is not my destiny.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Oh, that enemy is so stealth, right?! I forget about him sometimes. I forget that he is working in all the places I can’t even see to try and keep us from God. It is so hard sometimes, but I’m standing with you girl. Quitting is not your destiny. You are a daughter of the KING!

  14. Wow, did I write this? Really, I can relate so well. I don’t feel I’m a quitter, but maybe the polar opposite-an overachiever. I, too, cannot walk away from this thing called writing. You have a gift, my friend, and the world needs it. Keep writing and peel off that quitter label from your forehead. There is something great inside you and God will bring it forth in His time. Thank you for sharing this awesome piece of goodness! Sharing this!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Isn’t it interesting how we can relate to these feelings from so many different experiences? I appreciate your encouragement today, and remember those words apply to you too! God has good things in store for you friend!

  15. I’ve had on my calendar for weeks to spend today and tomorrow in prayer and planning for 2017. What does God want me to do next year? Where am I going with my writing? Do I even want to continue? Is it worth the effort and stress to get something out each week? What if I just quit and focus on other areas of my busy life?

    Then I remembered you posted this in Tribe Writers, but I never got around to reading it. (I think God was saving it for today!)

    As I sit here this morning – making notes, journaling, contemplating – reading your words, and most of the comments, I feel compelled to carry on. I don’t know what that will look like, but even if I write only for Jesus, that’s ok. And I’m praying He’ll give me creative ideas for my writing as I go into 2017.

    Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability, Becky. Happy New Year.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Kathy, your words mean so very much to me today! I love to see how God uses His timing so precisely. So grateful for the way we can all spur one another on toward Jesus with every word, every prayer, every honest comment.

      Write for Jesus today and everyday friend. It will always mean more than writing for the masses. (And yes, I’m preaching to myself here too!)

      Happy New Year friend! I look forward to reading about all God has for you this year!

  16. Well Becky, this appears to be an old post but one that resonates today, September 26th, 2017. I’ve been asking myself the same question, “WHY?” And then I remember Him saying to me in the early 1990’s, “You write and I will do the rest.” So today, my answer to Him and to the WHY question, is, “Yes, Lord.”

    1. Becky Hastings

      AMEN! Yes, Lord indeed!

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