Fizzle or Fortitude

Mar 22, 2010

One man had enthusiasm for 30 minutes, another for 30 days,
but it is the man who has it for 30 years who makes a success of his life.
~ Edward B. Butler

I love the adrenaline rush that comes with a new idea.

“This is IT! The idea the world has been waiting for! The story of all stories! I’m brilliant!!!”

Okay, so maybe I’m not brilliant. But creative inspiration ignites my confidence and enthusiasm like little else.

But then time passes. A day. A week. A month. A year. And the idea I once declared “Brilliant!” is now just another on a pile unfinished beginnings. Maybe the idea fizzled because one person said it wouldn’t work. Or maybe I relegated it to the “maybe later” pile when I saw the effort it required to implement. Sometimes—okay, MANY times—my “brilliance” disappears in the fog of my own self-doubt. “What was I thinking? I can’t do this. I’m not qualified. I’m not good enough yet. I’m not …”

Galatians 6:9 became my mantra through high school. Little did I know at the time that my future life involved writing (as well as other tortuous endeavors like, um, let’s see, parenting!), and little did I know I’d need the fortitude of this mantra through my post-high-school years:

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. ~ Galatians 6:9

It is true that some ideas turn out to be less brilliant than we originally thought. That’s part of the process of our trial-and-error writing and living. But too often we receive ideas drowning in Divine brilliance, and although we initially embrace it with enthusiasm, we allow the day-to-day struggle of living and writing to erode the passion of what once was.

Your struggle as a writer (or just about anything else) isn’t going to be so much about coming up with a brilliant idea, but knowing how to forge ahead as long as necessary once God gives you one.

(photo courtesy of clix, stock.xchng)


  1. celeste

    This is much needed for me today..thank you. As we are on our 3rd week of Spring Break, I guess mentally I have taken many 'breaks' . One in which is writing. I get ideas and jot them down quickly and then move on with my day. I need to learn the art of consistency. Thank you again, I must go and forge ahead now! Bless you!

    • Michele Cushatt

      I understand too well! It's okay to enjoy breaks with your kids. The time will be gone too quickly and then you'll wish you had a few more moments. 🙂 Don't be too hard on yourself. Though consistency is important as a writer, quality time together is important as a mother.


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