Where Influence Is Born
As writers, we’re natural consumers of all manner of reading material, pages and screens alike.
Yet as we see other writers doing things we long to do, we can become discouraged by what feels like an everlasting road ahead. Feelings of inadequacy can snag our spirits as we compare our smaller influence with the seemingly greater influence of others.
But the behind-the-curtain reality is, no writer randomly decides, I think I’ll give writing a try, sends some words off to a publisher, then wakes the next day to the news that they’ve become an overnight success. That’s not a thing.
Every writer we admire has walked the same slow path of progress — one post, one chapter, one edit upon another. They, too, have received their share of rejection letters and have spent hours crafting a post that gained few likes or views.
But, friend, this slow path is a grace — for it’s in this tempered time that growth does its quiet work in us.
Yes, we grow in the craft of writing with each draft and edit we make.
But greater still, our roots of experience with the Lord deepen as we grow in Him, and in the stillness of that relationship, influence is born. For all ministry flows from knowing and loving God.
Jesus says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5, NIV).
No hustle to produce, no social media metrics, no fancy writing app … nothing breathes life into our ministry of words like having a relationship with the Lord does.
He is our source for inspiration, perspective, wisdom, humility — for everything we’ll ever need to bear Kingdom fruit from the page.
Oh, to linger with the Lord in the unseen, unposted spaces before meeting Him on the page … for the foundation of our ministry is formed in the quiet of that place.
It’s natural to want to skip ahead to work that feels more seen and substantial. But even if you could forge your way to the future, you wouldn’t be the same writer if you skipped the seasons of growth along the way.
For beautiful things grow in the soil of perseverance, in meeting with God day upon day as He writes the story of your calling upon this world beneath the shadow of His timing.
Brenda Bradford Ottinger
Friend, leave an “Amen!” if this is just what your heart needs today.
Brenda Bradford Ottinger is a writer and encourager who’s passionate about helping women loosen the chains of fear and embrace their God-graced freedom. With a tender heart for community, she is active in women’s ministry and is a COMPEL Training community group leader. Brenda believes in Jesus, laughter, authenticity, prayer and front porches. An everyday girl who enjoys the little things in life, Brenda lives in North Carolina with her husband and their three sons who grew up overnight.
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