Thursday, August 4, 2016

Seek Before You Sign by Susan Tuttle

Writers write with a goal in mind—to be published. For some that may take the form of self-publication. For others, it’ll come in the form of a contract. Whatever it might look like, you believe there is an audience for your writing be it one or one million. And part of your writing life is in seeking that audience.

No matter the path, there comes a moment in a writer’s life when some form of choice needs to be made. Sign with that agent? Move ahead with that editor? Pen your name on the contract? I’m sure you can add a few more. Bottom line, there’s a decision in front of you, and while it might look like everything you’ve ever dreamed, you need to stop a moment and breathe. Then pray. Because no matter how perfect something seems to our eyes, God is the only One who truly knows the path we should take.

I was reminded of this while reading Joshua 9 recently. The Israelites were tricked by the Gibeonites—and that decision followed them for years. The moment where it all unraveled can be seen in Joshua 9:14, “The Israelites sampled their [the Gibeonites]  provisions but did not inquire of the Lord.” (emphasis mine) See, the Gibeonites presented themselves as friends of the Israelites when they weren’t. They tricked the Israelites into covenant with them, and once Israel in essence signed their name to that contract, they were bound to uphold it—even when they discovered the deception. If only they’d inquired of God before signing their name.

Friends, we need to learn from their mistake. If you continue writing, there will be plenty of moments in your career where you’ll need to sign your name to a contract. Big or small, it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you spend time on your knees with God first. Just ask him if this is what he wants from you. Because it doesn’t matter how “right” everything looks—only God truly possesses the wisdom and foresight to give you the green light. And if it’s bright red, have the courage to step away. His “no” is always for your protection.

So seek Him before you sign.

Susan L. Tuttle lives in Michigan where she’s happily married to her best friend and is a homeschooling mom of three. She’s firmly convinced that letters were meant for words, not math, and loves stringing them together into stories that inspire, encourage, and grow women into who God created them to be. Romance, laughter, and cookies are three of her favorite things, though not always in that order. You can connect with Susan at her blog, Steps, Facebook, or Twitter.