Thursday, July 4, 2024

As a Writer, I Can Trust

by Lynn H. Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

Hudson Taylor served as a missionary in China in the mid-late 1800s. There’s a quote attributed to him that I love.

When I cannot read,
When I cannot think,
When I cannot even pray
I can trust. 


Do you ever feel this way? Like there’s so much life coming at you that you don’t have time to do anything? That you can’t even think, much less read or pray? 

I do. 

Sometimes, I go through my entire day or week or month, and I have no idea how I got through it. I’m bouncing around from one thing to the next, moving so fast that the only thing I’m certain of is that I’m not in control. 

And as backward as this is going to sound, it’s knowing that I’m not in control that keeps me from losing it. 

Let me explain…

My family has so much going on that very often, I don’t have the bandwidth to do anything more than trust God. When I’m too tired to think and too confused to know how to pray, I’ve found extraordinary peace, security, and stability in simply staying close to God with a posture of trust.

It isn’t elegant. It’s messy, and sometimes it’s confusing. But here’s the thing…this messy, confusing, chaotic life? It’s the one He has given me. As such, I’ve found that my only hope is to stand before him with open hands and a heart willing to say yes when He says yes and no when He says no, even if I don’t understand His decision. 

You may wonder what any of this has to do with the writing life. Fair enough. Here’s my answer: 

My life would be much easier if I didn’t write. There. I said it. It’s true. But, my writing career is something He gave me, that He sustains, and that He has, so far, refused to let me quit. (And yes, for the record, I want to quit every time I’m on a deadline!) 

Early in my career, I thought I had to say yes to every opportunity that came my way. In hindsight, it’s safe to say that I said yes to more than I should have because I was afraid to say no. 

These days? I say no more than I say yes. Sometimes I say no to things that are so good and wonderful that I almost can’t believe I’m saying no. 

When an opportunity comes my way, I pray about it, but to be clear, I’m not spending hours and hours on it. (Again…busy life…overwhelmed…hanging on by a thread here…) It’s more like, “God, what do you think?” And then I go on, doing what He’s asked me to do, and I trust Him to either throw the door wide or close it. 

And He does. 

I could list five things in the past year alone that He has given me a strong sense of “yes, do this” or “no, don’t go there” that I couldn’t explain at the time. But in three cases, I now know exactly why He made the decision He made. He had information I didn’t have at the time. He could see what was coming, and He protected me from myself.

Which leads us back to our quote.

If you’re serious about pursuing publication, I can guarantee you that you will find yourself in situations where you can’t think, read, or pray. 

But friends…you can always, always trust. He sees the chaos. He understands the overwhelm. He knows your heart. And He will not let you down. 

Trust Him. 

Grace and peace,


Lynn H. Blackburn is the award-winning author of Unknown Threat, Malicious Intent, and Under Fire, as well as the Dive Team Investigations series. She loves writing swoon-worthy southern suspense because her childhood fantasy was to become a spy, but her grown-up reality is that she's a huge chicken and would have been caught on her first mission. She prefers to live vicariously through her characters by putting them into terrifying situations while she's sitting at home in her pajamas! She lives in Simpsonville, South Carolina, with her true love, Brian, and their three children. Learn more at

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Lynn, for reminding us/me of a truth that is the foundation for my life. Trust Him. He has a plan and He wants to do it and He can do it through us. Even me.

    Tim Suddeth