Thinking back 29 years ago I can still remember the stinging feeling of devastation. I was a freshman in a Christian college studying to become a Pastor. While I was not exactly sure yet of my exact ministry path, I felt that God was shaping my gifting and He wanted me to use my creativity as the centerpiece of my future ministry efforts. Outside of any classroom work I had taken to creative writing. I wanted an honest opinion on my writing, so I made an appointment with an English professor on campus. I took with me what I thought were the two best pieces that I had written to date. I remember sitting in the professor’s office with my heart pounding as the professor read by writing.
Then the moment came when the professor spun around in their chair to give me feedback. I could have never imagined the words that would come from the professor’s mouth next. The professor said and I quote, “Nothing you have written here is unique and you will probably never write anything that others will want to read.” That was it. That was the extent of the feedback I received. The professor handed me my papers and spun back around in their chair.
My heart sank. I was left without words. I was devastated. I remember walking back to my dorm room in the early evening, I felt my mood sink with the setting sun.
After the devastating moment settled, I was bound and determined to use it as motivation rather than accepting the news as a final statement on my life.
I have literally thought about this moment every year of my life since. I was bound and determined to prove this professor wrong. I had even thought about writing a thank you letter in my first published work to stick it to this professor, but over time my feelings of revenge have faded over time.
One important truth that I have learned through this experience is that God is the author of your story, and you should not let others have a final say over what God is writing in your life. He and He alone will write the opening chapter, final chapter, and all the chapters of your life between.
I am happy to report that the professor was wrong. God was shaping my gifting. He was developing within me a spirit of creativity that would be a blessing to many. Concerning my writing since 2018 alone…
I don’t write these things to pat myself on the back. I write these things to show you that there is hope for you even in some of the most devasting moments of your life. Also, note that it takes time. This devasting blow the professor delivered to me happened 29 years ago. All of my published writing examples from above are from 2018. There is a gap of nearly 23 years. Never let the hands of time add to the crushing blow of devasting moments. Good things, and sometimes God things, take time to develop.
So next time you encounter a devasting moment ask yourself does God have a greater purpose for this moment? It is often in the lowest points of your life that you find God and the firm foundation to build for lasting success.
Other people do not have the final word in your life. God and God alone does.