Thursday, June 18, 2015

Writing Stubborn by Heidi Chiavaroli

Image courtesy of wokandapix/Pixabay

Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. ~Hebrews 12:1-3

I am a runner.

If you read that sentence and you are also a runner, we have just formed a unique bond through cyberspace. We have an understanding of one another and what it takes to run.

I am also a writer. Likewise, if you are a writer, you and I can relate to one another in a unique way. We understand this journey is not always an easy one, but it is so worth it.

Whether a runner or writer, the bond we share (besides the fact that we like to torture ourselves) is a certain character trait. Maybe trait is the wrong word, because it’s more of a decision. A decision to be stubborn. To persevere. Gina Holmes calls it Sticktoitivness. Name it what you will—grit, determination, or resolve. But I believe this is what makes success.

When I am finishing up a ten-mile run, when the muscles in my thighs are burning and my feet are on fire, when I can see that beautiful white mailbox where I will allow myself to walk (oh, how glorious is just walking!), when I push myself to finish strong because that’s who I am and who I want to be, trusting that my stubbornness will pay off, that I will be a better runner for pushing through the pain…that’s when I know victory.

And yes, when I’m writing. When I’m past that beautiful and inspiring beginning, when I’m sweating through the middle and agonizing over the climax, when my eyes glimpse that glorious moment when I can write The End, when I can just read a book without feeling guilty that I’m not pounding out the words on my own laptop…that’s when I know victory. I have chosen perseverance. Sticktoitivness. Stubborness.

And there, in the pain and suffering, is how I improve. How I find victory. How even, I can become more like my Savior as I fix my eyes on Him, the ultimate goal.

But wait, that’s just the beginning. Because now I must let go of my writing. Let my sweat and work—my baby—go. I must offer it up to God, trusting Him to do what He will with it.

I believe the same goes for everything in our lives—whether it be writing, mastering a sport, bringing up children, growing our careers, or our faith. We can only give our absolute stubborn best…and let God finish the work for us. (He’s good like that, you know.)

How do you help yourself push through those tough times in writing? How do you make yourself finish a project? How do you write stubborn?

Heidi Chiavaroli is a writer, runner, wife, mother, and grace-clinger—not necessarily in that order. Ever since taking her first trip to Plimoth Plantation with her sister, mother, and grandmother at the age of nine, she has been fascinated with history and its significance to today’s people and culture. Heidi is the winner of ACFW’s 2014 Genesis Contest, Historical Category. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband, two sons, and Howie, her standard poodle.