Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thursday Review—Undaunted

A Review by Lynn H Blackburn

Every now and then I come to a place where I need to step away from books about writing and spend some time with books about living.

The crazy thing is once I owned up to the fact that “I AM A WRITER” I found that just about everything I read has a writing application. Sometimes a big one.

This happened last week when I inhaled Undaunted by Christine Caine. If you aren’t familiar with her, Christine Caine is the founder of The A21 Campaign which stands for Abolishing Injustice in the 21st Century and works to save people from human trafficking.

I picked up Undaunted because it came recommended by people I admire, some of whom you might have heard of like Ann Voskamp and Max Lucado. Those are strong endorsers, but it was the subtitle—Daring To Do What God Calls You to Do—that really got my attention . . . because no one has ever referred to me as daring.

Despite having a million other things to do, I had a hard time putting Undaunted down. I’d already highlighted half the book when I read these words in Chapter 10…“the greatest giants we face are spiritual ones: Difficulty, Discouragement. Detours caused by a lack of confidence or pride or fear.”

Talk about a punch to the gut.

Right now, I’m sitting on 1500 strong words. I need to enter them into a contest, and I need to finish the book that they’re the beginning of. What’s holding me back? Sure, I’ve got a few good reasons, but the main reasons are a lack of confidence, pride, and fear. I’m absolutely terrified that I won’t be able to finish the story. Or that I’ll finish it and it will stink.

We writers struggle with these issues. What if people don’t like our story? What if we spend all this time on our memoir, Bible study, nonfiction, poetry, short story—you fill in the blank—and no one will publish it? Besides, it’s just a devotion or just a novel—it’s not a global ministry to combat human trafficking we’re talking about. It’s a magazine article or a blog post. It’s not earth-shattering.

Really? How do we know?

Maybe we should take a lesson from the boy with the five loaves and the two fish. As Christine Caine says, it is easy for us to “be so convinced that our contribution will be so small, insignificant, even inconsequential, that we decide to do nothing.” But, she goes on to say, “when we give what we have, and don’t over think it, God—the God of hope—delivers all the rest.”

Undaunted isn’t about writing, but it could have a profound impact on every aspect of your writing going forward.

Read it. And write undaunted!

Lynn Huggins Blackburn has been telling herself stories since she was five and finally started writing them down. She blogs about faith, family, and her writing journey on her blog Out of the Boat. Lynn is a member of the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild and the Word Weavers, Greenville. She lives in South Carolina where she hangs out with three lively children, one fabulous man, and a cast of imaginary characters who find their way onto the pages of her still unpublished novels. She drinks a lot of coffee.


  1. Sounds like a great book. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Edie and Lynn,

    WOW! Again, the LORD of Heaven and Earth speaks to my heart with another blog entry from a vessel like you gals! And this is POWERFUL!
    I cannot begin to tell you how revolutionary this stage in my life has been. Just owning the fact that I'm a writer, born and called to be one, has been the scariest and most liberating experience ever, apart from my salvation.

    Ultimately, I hold on to God's Word and to the fact that He is faithful and true. GOD WILL DECIDE whether THAT story you and me write wins a contest, whether THAT novel we so painstakingly write will be published, of if we'll need to self-publish or post on the Internet for all who are thirsty to drink freely, and just how many people we'll be able to influence with our testimony.

    What really matters... stay faithful in the little things. Ask God to send the Holy Spirit to anoint your message and INSPIRE His message and His words. We are weak... but His grace is more than sufficient for us! The Spirit's groanings help in our weakness... Not only inspiring prayer, but showing eternal truths through little people like us!

  3. You hit me right where I am these days. With the words, "it's just a devotion" and "it's just a blog post." I live in that trap and it keeps me from writing anything. I wholeheartedly agree with Carina. Our job is to stay faithful in the little things and leave the rest up to God.

  4. This is an inspiring book. The subtitle stays in my mind and moves me forward in this journey of writing my testimony...Daring To Do What God Calls You to Do!

  5. Undaunted is a great book. I volunteer for The A21 Campaign and I can tell you, Christine Caine is not only a great writer, but a powerful speaker. So inspiring.

  6. I'd like to check it out. You made it sound worth it.