Tuesday, January 22, 2008

In Praise Of Uncertainty – Schneider

If there’s anything consistent in the life of a writer, it’s the principle of uncertainty. When we sit down to write each morning (or afternoon, or evening, or whenever we get to the computer), we don’t know whether today’s allotment of words will flow or eek. Once the final draft it written, polished and submitted, we have no way of predicting whether the editor will love it or hate it. When the book is published, we can’t foresee how sales will go, or how reviewers will feel about the story we’ve bled onto the page.

A discussion on a Christian writers’ loop earlier this week made me aware of similarities between my writing life and my prayer life. Prayer is all about uncertainty. When I petition my Heavenly Father, I don’t know whether His answer will be “yes,” “no,” or “wait.” Sometimes He goes so far as to surprise me with an answer that’s none of the above. I don’t know whether I’ll feel “heard” or like I’m just talking to the walls.

In spite of the uncertainty in my writing, I show up at the page each day simply because it’s my job. Through my obedience to the demands of creativity, a story is born. (It’s no coincidence that the creative process is likened to giving birth.)

In spite of the unceertainty inherent in prayer, I show up to talk with my Father simply because He’s my Father. My purpose for talking with Him has nothing to do with “results” and everything to do with relationship.

Discipline is what takes me from idea to publication. Discipline is what takes me from uncertainty to trust.

Uncertainty is what makes me depend on my Creator, both in my creative endeavors and in my daily life. If it weren’t for uncertainty, I’d think I could manage it all alone. Instead, I discover resources beyond my imagination and I’m reminded hour by hour how much I need Him.

That’s why I’m grateful for uncertainty.

Janelle Schneider


Linda Wegner said...

Great post, Janelle, and I certainly concur with your thoughts. Getting beyond having to define what "I received" in my quiet time has been one the most important things I've learned in life. Knowing that changes writing, too. Blessings!

Anonymous said...

Hi I am hoping to get in touch with Janelle Schneider - my name is Laura Williams Hamilton and I knew Janelle when she and her family lived in Kingston Ontario - I worked at a store named Sacred Source - if someone reading this could pass along my email address of "wychwoodgrove@yahoo.ca" or "inthewychwood@hotmail.com" that would be wonderful! I am so excited to hear from her - Blessings to all.

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