Friday, February 25, 2022

How to Banish Writing Fears: The Cure for What If Disease

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

I’ve recently had the thrill of celebrating with several author friends. After years of working hard, improving their craft, networking, and building their platform, they’ve finally received a coveted book contract. Without exception, as soon as the confetti settled, each has been seized by a fearful case of What If.

  • What if I can’t make my deadline?
  • What if I run out of ideas before I finish the book?
  • What if I’m not ________ (fill in the blank—organized, smart, creative, inspired) enough to pull this off?
  • What if my platform isn’t big enough to sell books?

I know the What If disease well because I’ve succumbed to it almost every time I’ve signed my name to a contract. 

Only recently have I found a way to fight back. 

Exodus 31 holds the key. 

God had given detailed blueprints for the tabernacle and its furnishings. He described the elaborate curtains, the ark of the covenant, the table of showbread, the golden lampstand, and the exquisite priestly garments. He had a plan for every aspect of the structure, and He entrusted his plan to his faithful servant, Moses. 

I wonder how Moses felt as he considered the enormity and complexity of the project. Would he succumb to the What If disease?

Perhaps this is why God inserted the words of chapter 31:1-6 into the storyline:

Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts. Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you.

Do you see the cure?

“I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you.”

Whether we live in Canaan or Cincinnati, God has a plan to glorify Himself. He’s creating a kingdom that will stand as a testimony to the world and draw people to salvation. In every generation, He reveals His plan to His people. Then He equips and prepares them (us) to join Him in the work. As we walk in the calling He places on our lives, we experience the joy of sharing in what He is doing.

While we have a responsibility to work hard, we can do so with confidence. If God has called us to be part of His work, He’s also given us everything we need to succeed—for our good and His glory.

What if we walk in this truth the next time an opportunity comes our way? 


Lori Hatcher is an author, blogger, writing instructor, women’s ministry speaker, and career dental hygienist. She writes for Our Daily Bread, Guideposts, Revive Our Hearts, and Lori’s latest devotional, Refresh Your Prayers, Uncommon Devotions to Restore Power and Praise, releases March 1 with Our Daily Bread Publishing. Connect with her at or on Facebook, Twitter (@lorihatcher2) or Pinterest (Hungry for God).

Featured Image: Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash


  1. As a writer I haven't yet succumbed to the "what if" disease, but I hope to someday. A book might be in my future. Thanks for this timely word.

  2. Amen Ms. Lori. When we're walking in God's will and His plan for our lives, He equips us to get the job done. Great reminder ma'am.

  3. Lori, thank you for reminding us of God’s planning ability which is so unlike ours. I’m thankful for His call and His equipping.

  4. Thank you, Lori, for this insight and help. "What ifs" are stinkers!

  5. I have periods of the "What if?" disease, too, Lori. I'm sure we all do in times of doubt and fear. Thanks for sharing this reassuring and comforting message.