Encouragement Inspiration for Writers

One Gear—Forward!

Dianne Barker here spreading encouragement. A television documentary on ship building surprised me with inspiration. The narrator said that massive vessel under construction had only one gear—forward.

I know nothing about mechanics, but the statement excited me. Forward!

The writing life at times seems stalled—even slipping backward. We’re waiting. For a book proposal to wow an editor. For a publishing contract to reward our diligence. That best-seller years ago is old success. No one seems impressed.

When you feel stalled or slipping backward, remember Caleb. He was forty when Moses sent him and Joshua and ten other spies to explore Canaan. Caleb’s conclusion: “…We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it” (Numbers 13:30). Joshua agreed.

They saw possibility while others saw giants. Although voted down, Caleb received a promise from the Lord that gave him a forward focus, even through the wilderness delay.

“But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it” (Numbers 14:24). At eighty-five he claimed his inheritance (Joshua 14:6-15).

Caleb had one gear…forward!

Although he did a lot of waiting, he never lost sight of where he was going and he never stopped believing he would get there.

He had faith and he had vision. He believed God would keep his word and bring the Israelites into the land of promise, and he looked forward to the day he’d receive his inheritance.

I love the word vision, probably because I’ve always been a big dreamer. To have a vision is to have a dream, plan, or goal…a mental picture of something in the future…the ability to see beyond today.

Even knowing events may take an unexpected turn, I’ll keep on dreaming. Without a vision, life is dull…humdrum…lifeless. Vision adds sparkle to our days.

Don’t be afraid to dream. Don’t hesitate to ask God to do the impossible. He’s very good at that, you know.

Do you have a vision for the year? A plan for next month? A goal for today?

Vision is all about seeking God’s will, aligning our will with his, and trusting him to bring the vision to reality. We can wait patiently, knowing he has a purpose even in delay.

When the vision starts to fade and we feel stalled, even slipping backward, we live by decision.

“But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).

It’s time to get in gear. Forward!

 Dianne Barker is a speaker, radio host, and author of 11 books, including the best-selling Twice Pardoned. She’s a member of Christian Authors Network, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and Christian Women in Media Association. Visit

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