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Difficult Things

Writing is difficult, and even though I love to write, there are some days when it feels pretty impossible.


I was reminded the other day of some writers who’ve had it way harder than I have and probably ever will. Through their individual circumstances and struggles, God used them in some pretty amazing ways. I was really encouraged, so I thought I’d share.

John Bunyan

John Bunyan started writing The Pilgrim’s Progress when he was thrown into Bedford jail for sharing his faith. He was imprisoned there for twelve years. When I write I like to have my comfy chair, my coffee, and my music. John Bunyan had a prison cell.

“As I walk’d through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place, where was a Denn; And I laid me down in that place to sleep: And as I slept I dreamed a Dream.” ― John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress

“My name is now Christian, but my name used to be Graceless.”― John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress: From This World to That Which Is to Come

“Now may this little Book a blessing be
To those that love this little Book, and me:
And may its Buyer have no cause to say,
His money is but lost, or thrown away.” ― John Bunyan, Christiana’s Journey Or The Pilgrim’s Progress, The Second Part

Elisabeth Elliot

Elisabeth Elliot wrote Passion and Purity, the story of how her and her husband met and got married, sometime after her husband was martyred in the mission field. After his death she ministered to the same people who had killed her husband, and many of them came to know the Lord. Her strong faith and obedience in the face of suffering came out in everything she wrote. Her example has had such an impact on my own life and in the lives of so many others.

“I realized that the deepest spiritual lessons are not learned by His letting us have our way in the end, but by His making us wait, bearing with us in love and patience until we are able to honestly to pray what He taught His disciples to pray: Thy will be done.” ― Elisabeth Elliot, Passion and Purity

“Does it make sense to pray for guidance about the future if we are not obeying in the thing that lies before us today? How many momentous events in Scripture depended on one person’s seemingly small act of obedience! Rest assured: Do what God tells you to do now, and, depend upon it, you will be shown what to do next.” ― Elisabeth Elliot, Quest for Love: True Stories of Passion and Purity

“God is God. Because he is God, He is worthy of my trust and obedience. I will find rest nowhere but in His holy will that is unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what he is up to.”

― Elisabeth Elliot

George Matheson

George Matheson penned the famous hymn “O Love That Will Not Let Me Go” on the night of his sister’s wedding. Several years before  George had been abandoned by his fiance after they discovered he was going blind. His sister had become his caretaker after that. He wrote the hymn in five minutes.

1. O Love that will not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in thee;
I give thee back the life I owe,
That in thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.

2. O light that followest all my way,
I yield my flickering torch to thee;
My heart restores its borrowed ray,
That in thy sunshine’s blaze its day
May brighter, fairer be.

3. O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be.

4. O Cross that liftest up my head,
I dare not ask to fly from thee;
I lay in dust life’s glory dead,
And from the ground there blossoms red
Life that shall endless be.

Even if we can’t see it clearly right now, some of our greatest struggles and trials can be used in ways we can’t even begin to imagine. So, let’s press on!

Hope you guys are having a great week!

About Britta Valentine

saved by grace, writer of young adult fiction, and drinker of copious amounts of coffee

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