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.
10 responses to “Why I Write”
Very awesome post. Look forward to reading more.
Thanks for stopping by!
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.)
I volunteer with an inner city youth ministry in Charlotte called one7. http://www.one7.org. It’s been two years and the stories of these kids have broken me and caused me to seek God more than ever. Jesus wants us to get out of our comfort zone and die to ourselves daily. It is so much easier said than done. 🙂
I feel the same things. And dream the same things. And I’m pretty comfortable, too. I just feel so squeamish when I can’t respond because I don’t know what to say about Jesus. I know he is your Savior. And I so respect that. I believe your gift is from G-d. So you can use it to write about anything and everything. And you should.
I miss you, Jess.
Was Clay our glue? I hope not. Maybe we need some WWF. 😉
Feel free to crush me.
Never. You’ll always be my favorite RASJ. Clay isn’t the glue. I hear he eats glue though. No, that’s not true.
Well, I miss you just the same! But I bet he might eat paste. 😉
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.
“I write for me but then I share it so my joy will be made complete.”