I set an audacious goal for myself this year.
I want to write a book.
Going public with that goal has been both thrilling and terrifying.
It is thrilling to verbalize it.
It is terrifying to think about executing it.
I have found that this seems to be the case with every goal that I deeply care about.
I have done some initial work on the project.
I have enlisted the help of some qualified people to help me. I have done some writing. I have also sent in some of that initial work for review. That might have been the most maddening and scary part of the entire process… waiting to hear those first impressions of your work.
Why are some goals so terrifying?
In this case, I think it is becoming I am trying something brand new. The reality is that I don’t know if I have what it takes to be a writer. In my profession, speaking and writing are two skills that people might assume all pastors possess. And writing might actually be a skill I already have, but I have no real experience which would provide evidence of that.
In the last twelve years I have had an abundance of experience speaking and teaching. I have probably averages 40-50 messages a year during that time span. That means that over the last decade I’ve dedicated thousands of hours to developing that craft.
And after all that time… and all that investment… I would argue that I am just getting started. I am just now at the point where I could feel some confidence saying, “I’m a speaker. I’ve developed that skill.”
Writing is in some ways brand new for me and the possibility of failure seems extremely high.
All that is to say that there are few things as overrated as raw talent.
Truly developing takes incredible discipline and consistent effort.
That means that there are no “naturals.”
We do our future selves a great disservice when we fail to appreciate this truth.
And so I have established a very detailed and complicated plan for completing this project… I am simply going to keep writing. I am going to face this overwhelming fear that this is going to end in disaster and keep writing.