The darkness of the room is pressing down on me, heavy and thick. I am alone, sitting on the floor, leaning against the door. I must keep them out. I cannot let them come after me again. Tears stream down my face and my breath comes in gasps as I hear them approaching. I am defenseless against their arsenal and I know they have loaded their weapons and are moving toward the room, quietly, sneaking, planning their attack. My heart is racing and I am internally screaming, “NO!!”” There is no escape, no where to run, no where to hide. I can only sit and wait.
The voices start with a whisper. “You cannot do this. You are not a writer. A writer writes books, is published, is paid. You have nothing. You are too scared to even submit anything and scared you should be because it is all garbage, a mish mash of words that makes no sense.” Louder, the voices continue. “You have nothing to say. No one cares about your opinion and it isn’t even your opinion anyway but borrowed words from other people. There is nothing left for you to say. It has all been said. Why do you think that anyone wants to read your words, your ramblings. It is boring drivel” Screaming now, the voices rising, each syllable punching me. “You are lazy and can’t stick with it any way. This is just a waste of your time. There are other things you should be doing. You are trying to string a few sentences together and believe that that it can make a difference in anyone’s life. Are you CRAZY?! No body cares about what you have to say! You are nothing, Nothing, NOTHING!”
I am crumpled on the floor, weak from the assault. Panting fills the room ... are they still here? Slowly, the realization breaks through my battered mind ... there was only one voice. Only one voice. Who? Who hates me so much? Who would seek to destroy me? With effort, I open my swollen eyes to try and identify my enemy. Alone. I am alone but the breathing echoes in my ears. I whip my head around, trying to catch a glimpse of the unseen foe ... no one is there. Slowly, I bring myself to my knees and reach up to find the lightswitch. A touch and the blinding light fills the room and I recoil in pain. Within a few moments, my eyes adjust and I search the room, trying to convince myself that someone IS there. I was attacked. I find no one.
In my panic, I turn toward the dresser to brace myself and look into the mirror and a familiar voice yells, “Where are you?!?!?!” It’s me. I am my own foe, my own enemy, my own critic. No one has ever stood before me and crushed my words, except me. How can this be? How can I be drawn toward this desire to write, to communicate, to paint my soul with strokes of letters and at the same time tear it down, with smashing blows of a sledge hammer.
I lay my head on folded arms and weep, great heaving of my heart, painfully confused. Minutes pass and the sobs subside and I become aware of a presence, holding me up, embracing me, stroking my hair. The voice of my Lord says, “You are not the enemy. There is but one enemy and he comes like a thief, to steal, kill and destroy. The voice you hear is not your own voice but the voice of Satan. He seeks to destroy the very gift I have given you. Your words are not your own; they are my gift to you. Every good gift is from above, from my glorious riches. I created you. I formed you for a purpose, with work in mind for you. The enemy stalks you to prevent you from doing my will."
“You can do this because I created you to do this and you can do all things through me. I am your strength. You are a writer now and will always be a writer, whether published or not because you write and you write because I created you to write. Without me, you ARE nothing ... but with me, you are my beloved, you are everything. Your words are not drivel. They are the words that I have given you. You ARE fearful but without reason. I have not give you this fear. Don’t listen to the enemy anymore. Your writing must be submitted to me first then I will decide what needs to be done with it. You may be published. You may not. Don’t worry about that. I want you to write for me. It’s not garbage. It is my gift given back to me, a sacrifice of praise, glorifying me. It is beautiful. You do have something to say because I have written the message on your heart. Just say what I have given you to say. I care and that is all that matters. But, others care too. Solomon said that there is nothing new under the sun and he was right but it hasn’t been said with your voice. That is what makes it unique, your voice that I have given you. You aren’t sticking with it because of laziness. You are not sticking with it because you have believed the lies of the enemy. It is not a waste of your time to do what I have called you to do ... yes, there are other things to do but this is important because I say it is important. It makes me smile. It pleases me. Don’t you want to please me? And why are you so concerned about making a difference? That is not your job. Let go of that weight. Serve me. Love me. Be obedient to me. I will take care of making the difference, ok? Again, I remind you that without me, you ARE nothing. Don’t walk away from me. I am your shelter from the enemy, your strong tower, your refuge. I will protect you. I am everything and that’s all you need to know.”
I slump in surrender to the truth. I am tired but ecstatic with victory. There is power in knowing, in identifying the enemy. I know that I am not alone and that I can rest in the shadow of the almighty. I know that I am in His will, living out His purpose when I am writing. There is no call to publish x amount of books, just to write. Stay in that process of writing and let God worry about the product, the results. It all belongs to Him anyway.
Yes, I too saw the title and thought to take a look - one of the things that the Lord has been showing me about "capturing the attention" with the title...I loved the passion within your piece and as I posted somewhere yesterday, the enemy IS on the prowl here...Praise God that we have the victory in Christ though!...Lovely reminder that all that we do, we do for Him first and foremost, and if He chooses to make it pubic, then so be it - if not, then it remains our `personal` gift to Him..bit like the perfume from Mary...Have you noticed that writing becomes a sort of "therapy" for us? - We speak and God counsels us? The only bit I winced at was when you wrote "you are nothing..." I know in what sense you meant it but for a moment it seemed that you were once again relegated to that of a fallen worm - which is not the case of course, cos we are "the apple of His eye" and "holy and dearly loved"..good stuff Cynthia - thank you.
Nice job. I know that enemy, he was bugging me earlier today, he was a little more subtle with me, but it was the same enemy. That's what makes this piece really good, we all can relate to it on one level or another. One of the things I noticed, that I try to avoid, is starting multiple sentences with the same word in the same paragraph. In the first paragraph a number of sentences begin with "I" However, it seems to work with this piece. In the next paragraph you contrast by starting a number of sentences with "You" The repetition adds to the frantic nature of the moment, so I don't know if I would make many changes. The last paragraph, publish x amount of books. I would use a word instead of x, once I realized what you meant it made perfect sense but for a moment it made me stumble. I'm tired from working all day, but I saw the title, thought I'd take a look and then couldn't stop reading. Thanks