Interviewing guests is fun. I hope that you truly enjoy their point of view starting in September. As I interview, there seems to be a consensus of (3) so far, which includes me. It’s a revelation that our spouses don’t read our completed novels-go figure. I thought I was the only one.
Now, please don’t think I’m here to bash spouses-I’m not. I’ve heard and experienced significant encouragement from my other half. He tells others about my work, sends readers my way, and shares his ideas.
So, to discover why some spouses choose not to read our work; I determined to do a little digging in my backyard.
Hysterically, I realized in my novel, “Unconditional Counsel”, the character Erica is an author, and she’s grumbling at her husband about the same thing. Gary says, “It’s not that I don’t enjoy reading what you write, but you want me to give you an honest view of your work. When I suggest something you don’t like, you don’t speak to me for at least a day or so until you calm down. Besides, you end up writing what you want to write, anyway.”
Wow! I had to think about what I wrote a character to say. Did I treat my husband that way? So, in the spirit of not bashing spouses, I wanted to investigate. Well, I asked the only person I could; my husband, because he doesn’t read my novels and I wanted to know why. He obliged. Now, my husband is straightforward and sugarcoats nothing. And his reply puzzled me, but because hindsight is 20/20, I had to step back and see his point of view. He responds, “Because I’m living it.” I said, “What! Your not living my books.” At least not now, I thought, but this is where I almost got a little upset. So, I state, “You read other people’s books.” I won’t continue down the rabbit-hole of this conversation.
He clarifies, “I support what you love to do. I accept that you take time to write. I live the process with you when you are busy writing and the joy you get when it’s finished and you tell me all about the book.” Good comeback! In that moment, I had to understand that my gift, my calling, my business, my ministry is not what he’s into, even though he SUPPORTS everything I do. The opposite of his full support wouldn’t be a good thing.
So, in the spirit of honesty, I could be mad at his answer or I could do the opposite and say it’s okay, and acknowledge how he feels, and welcome his encouragement and love for what I love to do. And although I did that, satisfaction eluded me in his answer.
How Our Mighty God Works
After having this discussion with my supportive husband, a friend of mine sends a devotional to our ladies’ group, “Committing to the Work”, by Rachel G. Scott, based on Nehemiah 5 in You Version Bible app. This is what she states on Day 5, “...Some people will not support you! Some people you expect to support you will not. They may not show up, sell tickets, purchase the product, give helpful ideas, or donate to the cause...familiarity breeds contempt. They may take for granted the fact that you do what you do so well and may not show any interest in it.”
“I so get that”, but here’s the kicker, she continues, “Expecting people to understand your assignment is unfair to God.” Say what! I got excited and convicted all at once. She says, “He gave the assignment to you, and unless He (God) has shown you He’s connected the person to it; release them from the pressure of participating. God is trying to fill you with so many wonderful things, and one thing that can block blessings is bitterness.” My goodness today!
By allowing God to do what He will do and leaving expectations of others behind, you open yourself up for blessings. Thank you, Jesus, for that revelation!
My final thought! I never want to be in a position where I’m blocking my blessings because of bitterness or a misunderstanding or because I think the other person should be who I want them to be in my life, and that’s not where God planted them.
This has helped me and I pray it's helped you.
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P.S. Don’t forget NNB Author’s P.O.V. officially starts September 2020.
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