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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Concentration (07/24/08)

TITLE: Birth Words
By Anita van der Elst


A hurtful action led to my decision to confront a friend in love. The preferred result of acknowledgement and apology did not come. The relationship was no longer one of safety for me. I realized that it had not been a healthy situation for some time. I had been looking to that person to fill my need for direction. I began to understand more fully that the Holy Spirit is the only one who can blow his gentle breeze and turn my sails in the direction I am to go.
In addition, having moved some distance away from where we had attended church for over twelve years, my husband and I decided to allow God to lead us into a new adventure as we search for a church to call home in our own community. As exciting as this is, I miss my former church family. I miss the sense of purpose filled by the church’s activities and ministries. Again I began to see that I am to depend on God to bring purpose into my life.
One day after journaling about my grief over the loss of these active friendships, and of the lack of direction and purpose in my life, I began organizing my desk and craft area. I found some stories I had written almost twenty years ago. They weren’t half bad! As I skimmed through them, that gentle breeze of the Holy Spirit began to blow. I heard something that made my eyes pop wide open. God was saying something to me, “My girl, I’ve given you the gift of the ability to write for a PURPOSE. Why don’t you put your attention on that? Why not go in that direction?”
“Okay, then!” How else could I respond?
I have been writing my whole life but always in spurts, often with several years between the spurts. I’ve been involved from time to time with writers’ critique groups and have even submitted some pieces to magazines without results. About ten years ago one of my devotional pieces did get included in a book of devotionals for women. But I hadn’t really focused with any concentration on writing. But now I said, “Okay, Lord. You are the one giving me my purpose, the ability to write, and you are pointing me in that direction, and that’s where I will put my concentration.”
The next day I attended a monthly seminar for women provided by a Christian ministry. One of the women there spoke prophetic words of confirmation and affirmation to me. She did not know me or my story, had never met me before, but she said, “God has pointed you in a direction and you are to follow that direction.” Then I told her what I had experienced the day before and that God had confirmed through her what I heard him say to me. She encouraged me to move steadily forward.
The next week a friend shared with me about this on-line Christian writers service. It is just what I need for continued encouragement. I have now set up a weekly schedule for myself so that I can concentrate on my writing in a productive, non-overwhelming way, using a variety of books on writing to help guide me. My husband is completely supportive of my newfound but long-held passion for writing.
I am desperate to write, to birth words on a page, to birth pages and pages of words. My thoughts are prisoners and I want desperately to set them free. What an incredible freedom to concentrate on the direction God has pointed me in.

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This article has been read 777 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Judith Gayle Smith07/31/08
Your words echo my heart, whih is hugging yours...

I specialize in "spurtive writing/writhing" - fitfully sporadic - a result of my lack of focus/concentration.

Your words are stirring me to be more aware of the leading of the Holy Spirit's breath infusing my struggles wth not only my life, but my hesitation to write more often.

Thank you for your inspiring words, and may He continually bless your efforts...

In His Grip (albeit losing mine!)

Lisa Keck07/31/08
With the title and subject matter I thought this would be about focal points and labor. (And yelling at your husband) What a pleasant surprise! Keep writing. This was a great encouragement.
Patty Wysong07/31/08
I was just clobbered over the head with this...I came to do some reading, to drown my sorrows, because three days' work was eaten, work in the direction I feel God directing me. I'll get back to work now. Thanks.
ps--that las line is great.
Marlene Austin07/31/08
A heartfelt devotional. May God continue to direct your writing. :)
Debra Martinez07/31/08
Could we be twins separated at birth? So many of your words could have come from my own experience that I think YOU may now be the one confirming the direction I have felt led to follow. I, too, have scheduled regular writing for the first time. Thank you for your love of words. I hope to read more of them.
Lyn Churchyard08/01/08
I think there will be a lot at FW who can relate to this. You've hit the nail on the head about concentrating on honing the gift God has given us. This would be a great article for a Christian writers' magazine. One of the things that stood out for me was... “My girl, I’ve given you the gift of the ability to write for a PURPOSE. Why don’t you put your attention on that? Why not go in that direction?” Excellent job on topic, thank you for reminding us of where we should be heading.
Larie Norvell08/02/08
Praise God for His direction for you and for your obedience! This has been very encouraging. Please continue to listen to those whispers and be obedient, for God is now using your writings to inspire others!
Mary Hackett08/04/08
The whole fitful writing thing is so true...welcome to FaithWriters, though, and may this site be a source of constant encouragement for you! One little note about your entry: double spacing between paragraphs helps the reader separate the thoughts as he reads. Otherwise it can look a little smooshed and overwhelm the reader :) Thanks for sharing!!!