About the Episode
As we step into 2024, Rachel invites you to make five intentional decisions in the new year for your writing plans and publishing goals.
📒 Show Notes and Resources 📒
Topics covered in this episode:
- Leaning into Your Strengths
- Trusting God’s Wisdom
- Praying Daily for Your Decisions, Plans, and Goals
- Creating from Rest
- Gifted + Guided Prayer Quarterly Prayer Journal for Entrepreneurs
****Get it here: https://amzn.to/48kMyOl
Grab Gifted + Guided Prayer Journal
Click for Transcript
[00:00:00] Welcome to the new year. Now we’re not that far into January, so you may or may not have started setting some goals for yourself. But if you have, or you’re starting to contemplate them, your goals may include something like getting a book deal, or maybe you have a book coming out and you want to make sure you nail that book launch so you can get the book into the hands of as many readers as possible this year. Wherever you are at on your publishing journey, whatever your goals may be this year, I want to offer you five decisions that you can make in 2024 as a writer. So let’s get to it.
All right. So the very first decision I want to encourage you and I to make as writers in 2024 is to decide to lean into our strengths. It’s no secret that we are all gifted differently. We all have our different skills and strengths and abilities and talents. And we have different experiences that have shaped us and molded us.
We have different lenses through which we see things and [00:01:00] that’s good and beautiful and lovely. But with all of that creativity running round, there’s a lots of opinions and thoughts about how to do things. And especially in this writing community that we’re part of, we tend to hear all these different sometimes conflicting thoughts about how to do platform growth or how to launch your book successfully, if you should traditionally publish or self publish. And I know you’re coming to this podcast because you’re trying to hear my thoughts and opinions on some of the things. And I think that’s okay. There’s nothing wrong with listening to different thoughts and opinions because somebody might share something, have a little bit of insight that helps you to make a decision for you and your writing.
But what I don’t want us to do this year is to get so caught up on what. Everybody else says that we forget to filter it through the lens of how has God gifted me. Where does this line up with? Where is it in alignment with what I have the skillset to do? Or the ability to do or the purse, like the things that I have [00:02:00] experienced.
How does that line up with that? So I want us to really decide this year. To commit this year. To leaning into where our strengths are and not just doing things because somebody else said to do it. And so that takes a little bit of discernment. And so I would encourage you to pray about that. Pray for discernment. Pray that God would help you. Uh, understand how he’s gifted you and then also help you to filter. Those thoughts and opinions and advice through that lens.
Now I will say sometimes we don’t have a skillset that we do need. And I firmly believe that if God, isn’t going to give it to us either. Um, for lack of a better word, like miraculously, give it to it. He will probably give it to us through. Leading us to the right training or maybe leading us to a person we could collaborate with, or maybe even just learn from. Whatever it is even if we lack it, I believe that God has gifted us to [00:03:00] steward creativity in a certain way. And he’s called us to do that.
And if he has gifted us and called us, he’s going to provide what we need when we need it.
All right. Number two, then second decision. I want to encourage you and I to intentionally make in 2024, as writers is the decision to trust God’s wisdom and not our own. Now I just talked about other people’s wisdom and filtering it through the lens of our strengths and abilities and not just doing something because somebody says we should, but I also want us to be really careful. That we’re not with our creative brains trying to come up with solutions that maybe aren’t in alignment with God’s will.
And so God is ultimately the best person to go to for advice and counsel in how to steward the creativity he gave you in the first place. And so he’s the best business guru out there. I think I said that word, right? I always stumble over the word. Grew, grew, grew. Rue is so [00:04:00] weird. It’s such a weird word to say. But anyway, if there’s a lot of those business coaches out there, a lot of writing coaches. A lot of marketing coaches. But at the end of the day, God is really the best one that you could go to, and you probably know the verse from Proverbs three, five through six lean, not on your own understanding and all your ways acknowledge him. I wanted to read it to you from the new living translation. So if you’re on. YouTube right now, you can kind of see me glancing off the screen cause I want to make sure I read it correctly.
So I’m going to read it from the new living translation. I don’t know what it was about reading from this translation, but it just felt a little bit more fresh for me. So I wanted to share that with you in case it would do the same thing for you. So it says trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will and all you do. And he will show you which path to take. So, like I was saying. God is ultimately the best person you can go to for advice because he’s the one who gave you this [00:05:00] calling and this gifting to steward in the first place. So don’t lean on your own understanding and make sure you decide to lean on God’s wisdom.
All right. Number three, kind of goes with number two and that’s to make the decision to pray daily over your decisions, your plans and your goals. Now. I have to, I needed help with this. I’m not the best about committing to praying daily over the things I pray often over them. But oftentimes it’s a very generic like Lord, please guide me in my writing goals and aspirations. Instead of really specific, intentional praying over every aspect of it.
And so what I did is I created a. prayer journal. So it’s called gifted and guided a quarterly per journal for entrepreneurs. So technically you don’t have to be a writer, an author to use this. It can be for any kind of entrepreneurial type endeavor. So podcasting, YouTube, um, Maybe you own a pet store?
I don’t know. It could be for anybody. [00:06:00] If you’re an entrepreneur. And so I made this specifically. To just kind of guide. My, um,
I’m trying to get to a page. There we go. Just to guide. My prayers. Just to be a little bit more specific each day. And to be able to give me just something tangible to write down what those prayers are and to surrender them to the Lord each and every day. So if you’d like to check out the journal is gifted and guided it’s on Amazon. I’ll link to it in the show notes. So, whether you use the prayer journal or you just pray, it doesn’t really matter. Just decide. To pray daily over your writing journey.
All right. So number four, number four is to decide to be disciplined. Now, what do I mean by this? When it comes to our writing journey, there’s not a whole lot that we can control. Not a lot of outcomes. We can’t control outcomes. We can’t control. If we get a book deal, we can’t control. If our book actually sells, we can’t control the thing. [00:07:00] What we can control. Is the inputs that we put into that writing journey. The number of query letters, we send out the number of posts we make on social media, the number of edits we go through, the number of words we get down on the page each day.
Those are things that we can control. And that’s the discipline that I’m talking about, the commitment to show up and do the work and not worry about the outcome. And not let the outcomes discourage us to just keep her eyes on the goal of putting one foot in front of the other to put those inputs in, to do the work, to show up. Consistently and disciplined. So that’s what I’m talking about. The decision to be disciplined, to not worry about those outcomes, to just show up and do the work.
All right. So number five and number five kind of goes along with number four in 2024.
I want you and I to decide to create from rest. Now I just talked about how we can not [00:08:00] control the outcomes. We can only control the input that we make. And those inputs, we do those out of obedience. That’s stewardship, it’s showing up and taking the giftings that God has given us the calling that he’s placed on our life and doing it with doing it well, to do it with excellence for him and for his glory, trusting him. Resting those goals and dreams and aspirations resting though that his feet trusting him, that he is going to take the work of your hand and multiply it and bless it and use it for your good and for his glory. That’s what creating from rest is. It’s showing up to do the work, but resting the outcome at the feet of Jesus. And so this year, may you and I decide to create from rest.
So I would like to end the episode by reading to you from the first page of the gifted in guided prayer journal. I wrote this after contemplating and wrestling with these decisions that I want to make for 2024. And that I’m [00:09:00] encouraging you to make to. And so I thought the best way to end the episode would be to read. Um, just read this little, it’s kind of like a little mini mini manifesto, almost.
This it’s really a posture. A posture that I hope to take in 2024. All right. So here it is.
I am gifted and guided. God has provided what I needed for the spaces I’ve occupied so far. He will provide what I need for where he is leading me next. He does not demand perfection or performance only obedience. I show up to the work so he can show off for my good and for his glory.
Well, there, you have it. There’s five decisions you and I can make and the year 2024. If you’re watching this on YouTube, can you comment and let me know which of these decisions you would like to make in 2024, or maybe you’re going to make all five. Let me know. And if you have a, another writer friend who is in the process of maybe goal setting, or maybe having just made some goals, can you forward this episode to [00:10:00] them? So that maybe these decisions can help them in this coming year as well. And as this episode is kicking off 2024, I just want to say thank you for listening to this podcast. I know you could spend your precious time listening to anybody, and I really truly do appreciate it, that you’re taking the time to spend it with me and talking about the business of Christian fiction and how we can best steward the creativity that God has given to us as writers. Happy new year and I’ll see you in the next episode.
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Hey! I'm Rachel and I'm so glad you're here today!
I help Christian fiction writers figure out how they can make an impact and an income from their storytelling while keeping rest a priority.
You can learn more about how I’m in your corner here.
And you can learn more about my personal journey here.
One last thing, if you’re looking for a bit more rest in your life, be sure to check out the Rest & Reflect guided journal.