Good message about staying on the path God has for you. I’d combine this with John MacArthur’s message or book about how to find God’s will for your life. https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/80-310
I also have John MacArthur’s book Found: God’s Will and reread it on occasion to see if I’m still on my path. Basically if you are WHO God wants you to be, He controls your wants, and you just need to do what you REALLY WANT TO DO DEEP DOWN INSIDE.
Like right now, more than anything, I want to write my Silver Skies novels. I’m consumed with this! But not just like I’d write any other book. God has put a masterpiece inside my soul and I’m determined to honor that! To God be the glory. My goal is to equal the quality of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. And, you know what? I think God put this desire in my heart. I want it to be the quality of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, but true to Bible prophecy, so that when someone picks the book up, they will feel like the future portrayed could very well happen in real life and that this book is very relevant for them.
You might say, “That’s impossible! You could never write as well as Tolkien and also be very prophetic in your novel.”
Well, with God, all things are possible. If he put this desire in my heart and I am who I am supposed to be, then it came from him and he will honor that desire for His honor and glory. I will write this masterpiece, and won’t cut corners and while I’m doing it, He’ll take care of my NEEDS and I’ll be on my path. God promises to take care of those in the center of His will for their life.
You might say, “You’re awful stuck on yourself to think you’ll write a masterpiece.” Well, actually, I never really believed it was a masterpiece until I picked up cold what I’d written in the 1990s. I read that 1990s draft with amazement and remembered what was in my heart as I wrote it. I then got to where I left off and found myself shouting, “Where’s your ending? You gotta write the ending! This thing is good. Why did you quit?” Back in the 1990s I had a consuming passion to portray to the world the amazing love between me and Brent Spiner. When I found out about Loree (who claimed to be Brent’s girlfriend at the time and publicized this everywhere), I dropped the book cold, forgot my writing skills and got somewhat off my path. I was confused about my love life.
The true ending that I need to write to honor the first two-thirds masterpiece is not what I tacked on in 2004 to help Steven Spielberg have an ending for the movie version. I hear the movie won Academy Awards. But you know what? I never could get into what I wrote (my modified version) in 2004. That’s cuz I forgot some of the skills I had in the 1990s that helped me write the 1990s masterpiece, when I tacked on an ending in 2004 to help out Spielberg. Spielberg based his movie on the 1990s version, THE 1990s VERSION IS WHAT I NEED TO FINISH. If I could make the first two-thirds a masterpiece (which I DID), I can finish it as a masterpiece. This is apparently a gift Jesus has given me and I need to use my gifts.
The point is the first two-thirds is masterpiece. If I did it in the first two-thirds, I can do it in the unwritten ending! I recall that I always felt like I needed to compensate for my inexperience as a writer in the 1990s, and I studied writing craft books like crazy to hone my craft and applied what I learned to my book in progress. I also trusted my guts, which I learned were uncannily accurate. My firm rule was to write like what I like to read, even if the whole world felt otherwise. I do recall that I told myself that to write the ending, I’d need to study Hebrew. Back then, there weren’t any good free Hebrew courses, so I probably would have paid for a Hebrew course. But Jesus says only spend money on food and bills and now there’s a free Hebrew course through a Master’s seminary professor. But you have to WORK, make flashcards and help yourself learn. I’ve learned that God honors hard work and passion, which is what I put into the first two-thirds. I can do it. Just don’t quit and do my best. I did it in the first two-thirds. I can do it.
I recall I spent a lot of time in RESEARCH when I wrote the 1990s version, which paid dividends in some of the most brilliant characterization I’ve ever seen in any novel (Yup, MY NOVEL). The amount of research I did filled up an entire file cabinet. I’ve lost all this stuff, because I couldn’t afford to move my files from Seattle to Florida at the time of my divorce. But I remember that I spent time in research every day while writing the novel. I have reordered any books or research material I used that were instrumental in how the first two-thirds turned out. I will have to continue the research to make my ending match the first two-thirds. And so I WILL.
I recall that one screenwriter advised her writers to do a lot of research about the characters in order to make them seem real. I followed that advice in the 1990s. This is why I’m studying Hebrew, which is a MUST to make my rabbi seem real in the ending scenes, where he MOVES TO ISRAEL. Hebrew is not an easy language to learn, but God has made a free course available through a Master’s Seminary professor which I’m taking. I don’t think this is an accident.
So, I’ll study Hebrew and Judaism enough so that my rabbi main character will seem real to my readers. I’ll study theology about Bible prophecy, so that my future tribulation and millennium portrayals will be right on target. I’m basically giving myself a Seminary education in Messianic Jewish Studies. I’ll brush up on the writing craft books I read in the 1990s that helped me write at professional level, so that my novel will read with a literary quality like Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, or Emily Bronte. I’ll remember how to craft scenes with characters that jump out at you, with dialogue that goes to your soul, with a plot that resonates deep spiritual truths and a theme that seems directed right at your heart. And someone someday will pick up this book I wrote and BE TRANSFORMED. https://gabriellechana.blog/silver-skies-1996-version/
You might say, “You’re taking a Hebrew class just as research for a novel?” Yup. You see, my attitude when I wrote Silver Skies was that this would be the only novel I’d write and I wanted it to be unforgettable. I really believed that back then. I figured with it being the only one I’d write, I’d make it a LIFE project, and so doing things like take a course to help with research would seem reasonable for a life-time project.
Hallelujah! When you are on your path, you transform those around you to the glory of God. You live by faith and you trust God to take care of you while you obey him and honor whatever He has put on your heart, as you remain true to the Spirit’s leading in your life.
I know I have to do the Gail Commandments to stay healthy, and then after that, whatever free time I have left, I use to follow my Spirit-filled heart.
In high school I sang in the Apple Blossom Festival in Virginia as part of my high school chorus. I fell in love with Apple Blossom Time, the theme song for my novel: https://gabriellechana.blog/2019/02/17/silver-skies-theme-song-apple-blossom-time/
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