Why I Write

I asked this question on the Twitter a little while back, and the response was overwhelming. Even folks who don’t necessarily consider themselves writers replied with the same idea that boiled down to, “Because I have to.” I get it. I totally do.

I love to write. I love it. A lot. If I don’t take the time to write, I get grumpy. I yell at my kids. I tell my husband to do his own dang laundry. I don’t bring my reusable grocery bags in to Kroger. I know, I KNOW. I’m basically the mom version of Bane when I don’t write.

I write because I have to, because God not only gave me the gift but the need to write. So I do.

I write about my kids because they inspire me and consume me and twenty-four hours with them isn’t nearly enough to satisfy me until they are another twenty-four hours older. So I am desperate to capture the awe, to communicate it to them in ways more timeless than infinite kisses and picnic lunches.

I write about my faith, because sometimes I invite God in and He overtakes me. Sometimes I let Him fill me and His fullness cannot be contained. Sometimes I listen when He reminds me how He not just loves me perfectly, but likes me personally.

I write about the bizarre things I think about, because I love to laugh, even at myself. I am convinced everyone thinks the same way I do, they’re just better at hiding their inner weirdo.

But lately I’ve been asking myself why I write in the context of sharing what I write. And I’m not sure I really know the answer yet. I don’t know why not writing makes me cranky, why I feel satisfied after writing something good, why — just recently — I actually want you to read what I’m writing.

But I do know I want my words to resonate. I want to draw you in. I want you to leave with the same feeling of satisfaction, a sense of something — Someone — out there, the feeling that something grand is at work. I want to make you laugh, because laughter makes things a little friendlier.

If I cannot — or do not — make things better through writing, then why write? If I cannot make God more present for those who doubt, why write? If I cannot insist that God is the prize, and everything else is just excess, just His generosity, if I cannot bring Heaven a little nearer, if I cannot woo you to the Jesus I know, then why write?

It is a question I am still asking.

And in the meantime, I’ll write about it.

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10 Comments

Filed under Writing

10 responses to “Why I Write

  1. Very awesome post. Look forward to reading more.

    Chris

  2. I’m going to be honest.

    You are a great mother, wife, sister and writer.

    But I’m not looking for Jesus.

    If you read the post from The Kir Corner today, it might help you understand where a lot of people are.

    It’s been hard to comment lately because I don’t feel a way in.

    If you feel like it is your sole (soul) mission to write about faith, specifically Jesus, you are going to have a small crowd.

    Because we aren’t all looking to be saved, Jess.

    I am not trying to hurt you. Maybe the question is: Do you believe in Jesus do much thst you don’t have to talk about Him all the time? Isn’t G-d is in everything you write? If your answer is yes, then isn’t that enough? Why do you have to mission with your blog?

    • Oh, friend, I get it. And I don’t mean to sound like I’m out to convert.

      I’m at a place where there is so much else out there, things I am completely unfamiliar with – things of heartache and injustice.

      This is where I am right now: I sit in my cozy house with my healthy family and excess, and I have the audacity to also dream of a writing career. It feels selfish. It feels selfish to want to write for people in the same place as me: people who don’t worry about meals and healthcare and security, people who have taken the fun of entertainment and turned it into their need, or their right.

      I guess I just want more purpose for this gift.

      (But I’m sure my burst of worldly compassion or whatever will die out soon.)

  3. I write because I have to but also because I want to commemorate lessons learned. I want to invite others into asking the questions and then celebrate fleeting success. I write to know I’m not alone. I write for me but then I share it so my joy will be made complete.

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