I recently had a cowrite with Carl Cartee, an award winning writer and worship leader. During our conversation, he shared with me about going to hear an artist from his church speak. This artist sells his paintings for thousands of dollars each. Every piece is valuable. Carl asked him a question that many of us as writers can relate to. “Do you ever paint a bad one?” The artist explained that since this is his only means of living, he can’t paint bad ones. He has to rework and rework, until it is a good one.
How would it feel to apply this to writing songs? Most ideas are good ones, although sometimes the song still may land in our “practice” pile or the “just for me” pile. I encourage you to dig through your songs, and see if there are some gems that you need to rewrite. The name of the game in writing is rewriting. There is a certain demand for perseverance that comes with the territory.
1 Corinthians 9:24 says this: “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.” I quote this not to push our focus to winning any earthly awards with our writing, but rather to be good stewards of every song. Give each song all you got!
I can’t help but think back to a song I wrote in the past that took a couple of years. I just knew this song had to be finished, and of all the songs I was working on, this was the one driving me crazy! I couldn’t come up with the right chorus. In fact, I brought this song to 3 different people to cowrite, and there were a total of 4 choruses written for this song. Yet the fourth one, it blew me away! It was the one I was waiting for.
Sometimes the songs come easy. Sometimes you have to fight for them. Either way, finish them strong!