Don’t Grow Jaded in Doing Good

By Trillia Newbell

A Letter to my writer friends or any Christian feeling a bit jaded in their work.

There have been many debates between bloggers this year. I won’t list them all here, it doesn’t seem helpful or useful; but it got me wondering if there are some writers who have come to the end of the year and are simply exhausted. You are tired of writing, thinking, arguing, grappling with theology, trying to understand grace, defending, and encouraging. I think some may even be jaded.

Jaded: fatigued by overwork or exhaustion or made dull, apathetic, or cynical by experience or by surfeit (excess).

If you are jaded you may be thinking about giving up writing next year. If you are jaded you could have seen your writing turn cynical or maybe even your heart. Perhaps you are “over it.” I imagine there are a few of you out there.

I want to encourage you to not grow jaded in doing good.

A little hope

I am a fairly new blogger. I have been blogging now consistently for a little over a year. (And consistently for me is once a week, we can’t all be Tim Challies.) Beyond blogging, I have been writing in various forms for three years. Perhaps my infancy has helped me end the year jaded-free, but I think there’s more. I tend to be hopeful, and so I want to spread it out a bit and hopefully give you a dose of hope to.

Hope: to cherish a desire with anticipation, to trust, to desire with expectation of obtainment, to expect with confidence.

I have a few goals this year. I need to finish my book and begin the second one, I have other writing projects due, and I’d like to keep my site up and running. I’m going into next year quite expectant. Expectant doesn’t mean that I won’t fail and it doesn’t mean a year that will be without bumps and bruises. I don’t go into the next year expectant because I’m skillful (boy, would that be nice), and I don’t go expectant because I have contracts.

I go expectant because my hope, our hope, is in God and He is always faithful. God will be faithful to give me words. God will be faithful, as I practice writing, to help me learn the difference between Chicago Style and AP (what I tend to write in since I’m a freelance journalist). God will be faithful to bring the readers who need to read my work. God will be faithful to reveal to me arrogance and pride when I write something that is overly critical. God will be faithful to humble me when I have to say “no” to a project that I really want to do because I am limited. God will be faithful to teach me His word. God will surprise me with His faithfulness in ways only He knows.

I am hopeful because I have a God who is faithful to me. He has called me to writing and so I can trust Him to provide all my needs for it. He is faithful to you, too.

So, if you find yourself at the end of this year feeling a bit jaded, the answer might be to hope. Hope not in this fallen world or in your imperfect skill, don’t hope in the next theological discussion or the chance to write a book. Don’t hope in your sitemeter numbers or your “likes” (that will surely make you a bit jaded). Hope in Jesus; the author and perfecter of our faith!

And we know that our hope, our only hope, is that we have been bought with a price, and it is Jesus’ sacrifice and our union with Christ that brings us ultimate hope.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13).

 

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8 Comments to “Don’t Grow Jaded in Doing Good”

  1. Hazel says:

    Hi Trillia,
    Thank you so much for such an encouraging article, it has done my heart good!

  2. admin says:

    You are welcome! Thanks for reading!

  3. Oh Trillia, this resonates. My waking thoughts pertaining the ole’ blog are “should I just flick it over? Knock it over? Give it a full on push over?”

    Between trying to give voice to theology and the beauty of the gospel, while at the same time reaching an audience who seems to have little tolerance for anything gospel-centered (the phrase itself makes them run the other direction shouting “Injustice!”), I’m spent. Tension is good and I believe that Christ lived a life of tension, so that comforts, but sometimes writing feels like a perpetual plod toward final glory—with none of the reward along the way.

  4. admin says:

    Oh Lore, if you were with me I’d hug you, look you in the eye and say, “Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us”(Romans 5:3-5 ESV).

    Sounds a little like you’ve received push back or even slight persecution for Christ. Keep going! I’ll pray that God would give you strength and endurance to write. And know that hope does not put us to shame.

    Bless you!

    Trill.

  5. admin says:

    Also, I have experienced this as well. I wrote a piece for Desiring God about rejoicing in trials and received a note that I was foolish for trusting God. I also received one giving me details for why God is not who He says he is or there wouldn’t be suffering. God surely can’t be sovereign, good, and allow suffering. I love these notes because 1) It gives me an opportunity to remember why I believe what I believe 2) It gives me an opportunity to truly love others 3) It gives me an opportunity to share the gospel. Thanks again for writing! -Triil

  6. This is how I view all the pushback. It really is fine—I can handle the pushback, I even anticipate it much of the time! I think the more difficult thing is just feeling like, is this making any difference? I get tons of emails from readers to whom it *does* make a difference, but I just long to see the tide turn particularly in the gender wars in evangelicalism.

    Thanks for your encouragement, truly. I always appreciate your words!

  7. admin says:

    I’m sure you do! Glad it encouraged you. Blessings on your writings, Lore!

  8. a says:

    thanks, i do get real cynical at times, so this really spoke to me, its like forget it im not going to try anymore because i always get messed up so ill sit here until Jesus comes. But i am honestly a little scared to hope again because sometimes it ends up not happening so id rather hope in those things that are real definate and never change then those they may disappear or may never really happen.